A comedy skit I remember from a long time ago opened up by showing a man walking out his front door. He goes to lock the gate to the fence surrounding his yard.
Apparently, he’s very serious about no one entering his yard, because the gate is covered with multiple locks. He spends about 30 seconds latching deadbolts, turning keys, and securing padlocked chains.
As he walks away, the camera reveals that, despite his zealous concern for locking his gate, the fence to his yard is only about 2 feet high with huge gaps in it.
It made me laugh.
But how many of us do the same with our time? And how does that affect our relationships?
I draw up boundaries around myself, and I’ll admit – I hate getting interrupted during those times.
When I’m reading, I want to focus. If my family interrupts me, sometimes I get angry.
Or perhaps it’s my day off. Or times I want to rest. Or those few days when I indulge in a restful sleeping-in.
It irks me when people or situations invade MY space and MY time.
Policing the Border
But am I as equally vigilant with how I treat my time? Do I draw up borders for myself and respect them? Am I eager to impose boundaries on other people only to turn right around and waste time endlessly surfing the internet instead of working?
How much time do I lose to distraction? To consuming more and more and more information?
Rather than reacting to people crossing over my borders, what if I sought to control myself first? I can sigh when someone invades my reading time – or I can focus more during my daily work and free up more time to read.
It’s important for us to set up boundaries, and I hope to write more about that in the future. But I think I first need to examine my own heart before adding another padlock to my front gate.
Photo Credit: Wetsun (Creative Commons)
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