Audacity.

Sometimes, just being yourself, in this world, is an act of revolt.

Recently, I found myself in group therapy, getting choked up, as we read a list about boundaries. To me, it read like a list of rights, freedoms that were being granted to me and acknowledged in that moment. It was overwhelming.

One of the things I’m working on is the amount of guilt and shame I feel, when I can logically say that I shouldn’t. It’s what I know in my heart and mind, but my spirit has been worn down by experience. I can believe in all my power, but unless I feel it, it’s difficult to act on.

When I do act like myself, and share things with others, that I truly feel, an opinion, belief, or fact that I know when they may not, I often experience guilt and shame for speaking up. Who am I to do or say something? Who am I to have an opinion? Who am I to be an authority on a subject? (EVEN WHEN I TRULY AM) How dare I have the audacity?!

The conditions are unacceptable, and I don’t like myself much when I accept them.

Why should I feel guilty for existing and breathing and having experiences and opinions? Others may not agree with me, but it doesn’t mean that I’m wrong – that something is inherently wrong with me.

IT’S A DIFFICULT MESSAGE TO UNLEARN.

And it’s not a coincidence that SO MANY WOMEN are out there talking about worth right now…


Here’s the list:

A boundary is the:

– Emotional and physical space between you and another person

– Demarcation of where you end and another begins and where you begin and another ends.

– Limit or line over which you will not allow anyone to cross because of the negative impact of its being crossed in the past.

– Established set of limits over your physical and emotional well-being which you expect others to respect in their relationship with you.

– Emotional and physical space you need in order to be the real you without the pressure from others to be something that you are not.

– Emotional and/or physical perimeter of your life which is or has been violated when you were emotionally, verbally, physically and/or sexually abused.

– Healthy emotional and physical distance you can maintain between you and another so that you do not become overly enmeshed and/or dependent.

– Appropriate amount of emotional and physical closeness you need to maintain so that you and another do not become too detached and/or overly independent.

– Balanced emotional and physical limits set on interacting with another so that you can achieve an interdependent relationship of independent beings who do not lose their personal identity, uniqueness and autonomy in the process.

– Clearly defined limits within which you are free to be yourself with no restrictions placed on you by others as how to think, feel or act.

– Set of parameters which make you a unique, autonomous and free individual who has the freedom to be a creative, original, idiosyncratic problem solver.


How does this read for you? Do you ever feel audacious just for being yourself?