Nancy Levin

Setting Boundaries Will Set You Free – The Ultimate Guide to Telling the Truth, Creating Connection, and Finding Freedom



by Nina from MindGourmet

Our boundaries are always an inside job

Nancy defines a boundary as “a limit that we set around what we will or will not do, will or will not accept, will or will not tolerate.”

Our boundaries are personal to us. They essentially say what’s okay or not okay for us – and there are many ways for us to set and cross boundaries.

The biggest myth about boundaries, says Nancy, is that someone else is crossing our boundaries. The truth is, if our boundaries are crossed, we are the ones crossing them. “It’s always our job to honor, respect, and maintain the boundaries that we set.”

Knowing that our boundaries are always an inside job moves us out of blame and victimhood into responsibility and empowerment. We have a choice, and we can meet our own needs.


Boundaries are not about someone else changing

“Boundaries are not about someone else changing their behavior. Boundaries are about what is okay or not okay with us and what we’re going to do to take care of ourselves.”

To be able to do this, we need to know and name our own needs and be willing to take care of them without being concerned about what others might think of us.

If we have allowed others to decide for us for too long, we might not even know what our needs are anymore. Creating and growing a Desire List can be helpful, says Nancy, to get familiar with our ability to desire and want again.

Nancy so powerfully says: “Boundaries are the way that we carefully choose and consciously curate what we want to bring in.”


Cozying up to conflict

So many of us are so in fear of conflict. We tend to catastrophize, and the stories in our heads are far scarier than what happens in real life. There’s this idea that the goal of relationships is harmony at all costs.

“Harmony at all costs comes at a very high cost,” says Nancy. We’re in this loop of thinking how we need to be or what we need to say to make this be okay. This means we’re nowhere near the present moment, we’re out of alignment with our truth, out of integrity, and out of authenticity. “We’re trying to manipulate the situation, which means we’ve crossed another boundary.”

When we say yes when we want to say no, we’re doing the relationship a disservice because we’re not telling the truth. We can say no with grace and gratitude, not with guilt and excuses.

Nancy encourages us to discern what is a genuine yes and what is a true no and to cozy up to conflict.


Nancy and I talked about so much more! Enjoy!


  • Nancy shares about how her personal journey with boundaries led her to writing Setting Boundaries Will Set You Free (02:00)

  • Nancy’s definition of boundaries (3:58)

  • Why sometimes it feels easier to have our boundaries crossed rather than standing up for ourselves (5:55)

  • Boundary blindness (6:45)

  • Knowing our needs and wants is so important! (9:45)

  • Different types of boundaries (12:40)

  • Setting boundaries with ourselves and holding ourselves accountable (14:05)

  • Boundaries not only need to be set but also maintained (16:55)

  • Cozying up to conflict (18:30)

  • Knee-jerk Yes’s and graceful No’s (22:05)

  • Is it selfish to take care of our own needs? (25:40)

  • Nancy’s 10-step process for learning how to set boundaries (29:50)

  • Maintaining boundaries (33:45)

  • How you can find out more about Nancy and engage more with her (44:30)

  • Nancy reads the poem The Anatomy of a Boundary from her book (45:15)


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Published April 12th, 2020