Contributed by Noreen Sumpter, The Self-Esteem & Confidence Coach


When you get hired to do a job or work for a corporation, they’ve hired you because you are the right person for the job.  You fit their needs and you have the desired skill-set.  In turn, you’re excited about being the one chosen.  You fought the good fight and won.  Whoo hoo.

You’re excited about your job description.  You fit their budget; you’re fine with the prescribed salary and if you’re not they’ve hooked you with some sort of promise of a  bonus or perk.  The day that you joined the company of your dreams, you received a large binder with all you need to know about the company.  If you’re anything like me, you’ll skim through it and you’re golden.  The binder is filled with the dos and don’ts and the musts and must nots. It’s clear that these are the company’s boundaries and rules for being an employee of the company.  In essence these are the rules of their game.

Skip ahead a few months, the novelty of being the new person has worn off now. You now fit snuggly into your position and pretty much have a general lay of the land.  Now it’s time to focus on doing what it takes to be happy and fulfilled on a day to day basis on the job. Knowing your boundaries (what you will and will not tolerate, what works and doesn’t work for you) enables you to organize yourself in a way so you won’t compromise what is important to you and negatively affect your mental, physical and emotional well-being. Ultimately knowing your boundaries  makes life at work comfortable for you and can greatly contribute to being happy at work.

Here are some questions you can ask yourself:

  • Do you have clear, precise boundaries that you operate best within?  If so, can they be laid out clearly to your bosses and co-workers, or are they boundaries that only you know about and everyone else has to read your mind to understand?
  • Do you have boundaries for your performance on the job? Is it important for you to have timelines for your work?  Is it important that you take breaks for effective productivity throughout the day?
  • How important is it for your co-workers to respect your space and the work that you do?
  • Do you welcome positive criticism or do you see criticism as a put down?
  • How important is it for you to take vacation or well-being days within the confines of your allowable time off?
  • Are you comfortable stating these needs in a confident way?

As a coach, I encourage people to know thyself! Practicing truth with yourself gives you clarity and peace of mind and in this state you are more likely to interact with others from a healthy place rather than from a personal or defensive place. In the workplace, when you have a handle on your boundaries, you will be clear about who you are being or your attitude on the job, you will know what your responsibilities are and you will be better able to get along with others. Then you stand the best chance of being fulfilled and happy at work.


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Noreen Sumpter, Personal Life Coach: works with High Achievers who feel trapped in their private life. They lack personal confidence and self-esteem. By helping them clear mental clutter and dissolve limiting beliefs, they can take deliberate steps, own their voice, speak their truth and have the freedom to live life their way. “Live Life Your Way”

“Live Life Your Way”

Call 718-834-9450 or e-mail

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