I recently had a discussion with some of my family about the boundaries I set for myself in terms of what I keep. I have one bookshelf in my living area and it is divided up into sections; organizing books, business books, social media books, travel books, hiking guides, and of course, fiction books to keep and some are in a “to read” section.
I’ve been reading a lot and while I borrow a lot of books from the library, it means that my book shelf recently runneth over. Instead of piling the books on top of other books, or getting another book shelf, I decided to take a look at what I had and if I really wanted everything on the shelves. I found two books I could get rid of and put them in my donation pile.
I didn’t feel constrained by my guidelines. I didn’t feel punished. I felt liberated. I knew that there were certainly books on the shelves that I hadn’t touched in a while. Or they weren’t as useful to me anymore. I will be able to give these books a new home and allow someone else to read them and enjoy them as I have done.
I have guidelines for myself in all areas of my home. If my closet gets too full, I know I can’t possibly wear it all and it is time to donate some. I know that too much stuff means I have to take time to care for it…dusting the books, washing the clothes, cleaning the decor items. It all takes time and let’s be honest, I’d rather be spending my time doing something else!
So boundaries aren’t about deprivation or punishment, they are about living your best life and giving yourself permission to do so.
It is the same as giving yourself dietary guidelines-you can indulge here and there, but it is all about moderation for a healthy, balanced life.