you are the power you don’t give away



Personal boundaries are the place where I AM transforms into I AM NOT.

People can knock on your doors all they want; you are under no obligation to let them in.

Your invitations are sacred.

If you never invite anyone inside your walls, you will die of loneliness. If you invite everyone, you will also die of loneliness – or exhaustion, or disease, or violence.

So there needs to be a velvet rope and a guest list.

The enemy will smash your art and rewrite your manifesto. They will hollow you out into a puppet who might wear cool outfits, but gets no respect.

A soul is not a static thing – it grows if you nurture it, and withers if you don’t. It glows with magic or disappears beneath layers of muck and graffiti and crusted blood. You can save your soul – but you must kick out the enemy. You must mark out a safety zone, so you can tend to the wounded, give your dead a proper burial, and rebirth your sense of self.

The stronger and more powerful your I AM becomes, the lower the walls need to be.

Yes is an invitation to merge. No is a declaration of self.

You are the power you don’t give away.

Aug 25, 2015

14 comments · Add Yours

Oh my god! I usually lurk and never comment but I just have to say that this is so true. This is so right on! particularly for women who are often trained to not have boundaries or told that we don’t have the right to our boundaries. For the past few years, I’ve struggled with this issue and I’m still getting to grips with it. This posting is a thought provoking addition to the process.


I agree with the principal, but I do have some reservations. Sometimes there are some connections out there that are gems. If the walls are too high, then these are missed. Quite often the “gems” are not the ones beating on the doors. Their knocks are more of a gentle knock and I would say …. could be easily missed. Is there a way to protect oneself and quietly observe who wants in?


@Kat Secord It’s not the height of the walls. Unhealthy boundaries have holes that leak out your energy and other resources and leave you vulnerable to manipulation and abuse. The other extreme (equally unhealthy) would be boundaries with *no* doors, so that you remain forever isolated even when, technically, you are in relationship.

People with healthy boundaries have plenty of doors and windows that they open to others in order to get to know them…and then, maybe, invite them inside those boundaries and more deeply into the I AM space, which is where love + intimacy live.

We inherit our sense of boundaries from our parents (which is why abuse creates such a deadly legacy that moves down through generations). One thing that really fascinates me is how we form relationships with people who are on the same level of psychological health as we are. We gravitate to people with the neuroses that fit neatly into our own neuroses, who are unconsciously playing out dramas from their past that mesh with our own personal dramas. So instead of actual relationship we engage in a folie a deux, a dance of madness, going for intensity and mistaking it for intimacy. As someone who has been there, I can say that it is compelling as hell.

Which — finally — brings me to my point. If you are missing out on the ‘gems’, chances are it’s not because they’re knocking too quietly. It’s that you have not yet developed the ability to hear them. In other words, they are not neurotic enough for you. :)


@Kemi Thank you! That means a lot, and I’m so glad you stepped out of the shadows to say. :)


This is a great on Justine! SO true! e


Justine, this may be way out in left field, but have you ever thought of connecting with a horse? Not riding a horse, or going to a stable, etc.. But a free horse, out on plenty of pasture. You have no halter, no rope, nothing. You go out into the field and maybe you sit down (or stand if sitting doesn’t feel safe to you). And you meditate. You seek only to sink yourself into the earth. And hear the birds around you. Because this is not about the horse. It is only about you. And the horse will facilitate your connection to your I AM in a most expansive way. The horse may never even come near you. S/he doesn’t have to. But I think you will find some magic there. xo


There is a blow-your-hair-back velocity to this post that really arrests me. Other posts I scanned were similarly ferocious. New reader… Thank you.


Another gem from Justine, brilliant!


@justine musk

Oh my, every word reads so beautifully (really…like no other!)
Spot on, refreshing. Your personal effect speaks to the core:)


Beautifully succinct, lyrically told.
Absolutely bolstered me.
Thanks, Ms. Musk.


Glad I found this article. Establishing boundaries has been so transformative in my life and reading this reminds me of the power that is cultivated when I do! Thanks!


I couldn’t have said it as beautifully, artistically and organically myself. Thank you for being an example of courage: to live vulnerably, authentically YOU. It helps a soul in recovery like me understand the life-or-death importance of boundaries and infuses me with what a life of freedom once those boundaries are established and maintained could bring.


Thank you


Add your comment