Occasionally I find myself needing to go into an area, as OSHA terms it, a ‘Confined Space.’ For a brief explanation of my particular area, it stats out about 5′ high by 1.5′ wide and over the course of 120′ to 150′ it tapers down to 0′ by 0′ (think of crawling inside a long culvert and doing work. OSHA has placed considerable
safety parameters on us when we enter this confine space and some companies, like my own, take those restrictions of OSHA to the next level of safety protection for added safety. Things like proper PPE (Personal Protective Equipment), forced ventilation, forced fresh air supplied within our facemasks, an attendant, continuous monitoring of hazardous gases, evacuation/rescue plans, etc. Those parameters or boundaries rather, though highly inconvenient, uncomfortable, and expensive to employ, make things relatively safe. Therefore when abiding by these safety practices and boundaries it is near impossible to be caught in a situation where my safety will be compromised unless of course I have an equipment failure (and even then I have backup protocols in place, if and when that happens).
Life is like this. We can choose to go through it ignorant and naive of the dangers or we can acknowledge the dangers and put proper protocols or boundaries in place with backup plans in the event of a failure so that we can avert harmful outcomes and consequences. For instance, I will NEVER allow another woman in my bed besides my wife. I don’t have to pray about it, I just won’t do it. Second, I will NEVER go into a bar without someone who will hold me accountable for my actions. No, I don’t have a drinking problem. For that matter, I don’t drink. Third, I will NEVER show up late to work … that has happened once in ten-plus years, and that ‘failure‘ has motivated me to put a backup plan in place. I now have a minimum of two alarm clocks in case there one poops out on me again. Fourth, I will NEVER hit a woman. For that matter, I don’t recall ever hitting anyone (man or woman). Not that I haven’t wanted too, but I just won’t.
Do you see how my safety protocols, my boundaries will protect me? With just these four boundaries, I have …
- Greatly reduced my chances of some STD (sexually transmitted disease).
- I’ve aided my chances for a strong marital relationship.
- Reduced the likelihood of causing a divorce.
- With my second rule, I’ve limited my exposure to breaking my first rule, which saves me from all the issues that precipitates from that.
- I’ve reduced my risk of break the third rule and reaping those consequences as well as
- I’ve narrowed my opportunity of breaking rule number four and the grief of that display of disrespect.
- In general, my second personal boundary helps me avoid doing something stupid I’d regret the next day (or the rest of my life).
- My third rule helps me keep a good job.
- It helps me establish a good name with my peers,
- In my company, showing up late for work will earn you demerits that limits your opportunity for advancement.
- All of these things helps ensure a stable and adequate lifestyle for my family and me.
- Number 4 boundary does more than one might expect. First, it keeps one from going to jail for domestic abuse.
- It protects my marital relationship.
- And most of all, it helps teach my sons how to treat a lady and my daughter how a gentleman should treat her …
- I’m setting them up for success in this manner for the rest of their lives
That’s 15 big things that these four simple boundaries can do for me, my wife, and our generations to follow.
That makes us humans unique, the ability to choose our own boundaries. I’ve never heard a dog say, “I think I’m going to stop peeing on bushes but continue peeing on trees.” No, they are creatures of instinct. Up pops the back leg and into the wind it flies. I’ve never heard a cat say, “I’m just not going to lick my paws.” We have the unique ability to make rationale choices (at least rationale to ourselves). The power to choose good from bad, right from wrong, this from that … was one of the first thing God said to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. No other creature gets to make choices as we do. No other critter that I know of can choose what provokes them and what doesn’t. So tell me, what boundaries have you found successful in your life? What boundaries have you had or not had as an example to your children?
Until later . . . Jonathan Watson
P.S. To see a little more about me, click here or about my overall blog, check this out. I love feedback (and work best with lots of it) so, please feel free to REPLY to anything I’ve written. Just scroll down to the “Leave a Reply” box and type away! Thanks!