Living within limits: Boundaries help to make decisions

What are our limits? How are we limited? What are the edges of what we can do? How do we find them? In some ways, in one way of looking at it, we could see ourselves as unlimited, because we don’t know where the borders are of what we could do.
Because we don’t know the future, in some way, we could become anything.
We could do things that are far beyond what we could possibly imagine.
And so in that sense, as far as we’re concerned, we could be effectively unlimited.
But on the other hand, it seems like it is useful to be aware of certain limits when it comes to practical matters.
Seeing the edges of what is, we could imagine, realistically possible, so that we can start to put some kind of bounds on our life: that, as much as it sounds kind of uninspiring, it seems like it can help to make decisions.
Because if we’re in this sort of open field of limitless possibility, with no possible limits, I find it hard to make any decisions, because any decision that we make is going to somehow cut down possibilities.
It’s somehow going to eliminate some of them.
Every time we decide to do something, make one choice, we’re saying yes to something, we’re saying no to other things.
So every time we make a decision, we are cutting down that limitless possibility.
So if we hold on to the idea of limitless possibility, then how do we ever make a decision? So I had this for many years, I really- and I still do love that feeling of great possibility, open, limitless potential, but seems like it can often lead to doing nothing, simply letting the potential exist.
Because potential might feel like it’s infinite, but what we’ve actually achieved, what’s in reality, is always only going to be somehow limited, somehow a partial picture.
So finding those limits, wherever they are, when we we feel the limits of our life, the limits of what we can do: as much as it’s maybe not particularly inspiring to think about how limited we are, it seems like that can help to make decisions.
If I’m already limited, I already know the edges of what’s possible, then it makes it easier for me to make further decisions to define my life.
Now, we also don’t want to go too far and just decide everything more than we need to.
If we just define everything away, and we have our exact course for life completely planned out, then we’re not open to the potential that’s out there.
And everything that I’m saying about being limited, it’s only- well, it itself is limited.
It’s only going so far.
I don’t think we should ever feel like we’re completely boxed in and completely cut off from possibilities so that we can kind of see everything, we know all our limits.
Because there’s so much unexpected that’s always going to happen.
So we can never perfectly know our limits, but we can maybe start to sort of map out some of the edges.
And in the most basic way, that is space and time, and especially time.
We’re not limited in any way more than we are in time.
So we have a limited amount of time, numbered in the thousands of days, perhaps, and that is the most basic limitation that we all have in our lives.
It maybe can be a bit sad to think about how short it is, but on the other hand, I find it helps to focus on what I actually want to do with those few thousand days that I have.
And then we’re limited in space the space that we can go.
We can’t visit every spot on the earth.
Even lifelong travelers, we’re still only going to see a very small slice of the earth.
So we’re limited in where we can go, and that also sets some kind of boundary around what’s possible.
So as much as it does not give a grand, inspiring feeling to think about how we’re limited, I find just feeling those parameters, feeling the limitation of time and feeling the limitation of space that I have available in my life, helps to kind of set the field.
It sets the stage, sets the environment, for me to then make decisions about what I’m going to do with this life that I have.
So I’d be curious to hear how you feel about this idea.
Do you also get this feeling that it’s helpful to look at these limits? Or is it better to keep more of that pure unlimited feeling?

#personallimits #findyourlimits #indecision

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