How can I protect my energy without closing my heart?

This is a journal prompt from The New Age Hipster, Vix Maxwell’s e-book, Lightworkers Gotta Lightwork.  If you’re interested in a copy, it’s available for free download from

I often find I can’t answer these questions ‘off the cuff’, so I drew a tarot card from the Bonefire Tarot (an amazing deck if you’re into tarot!).

I was presented with the Four of Wands. In the image, there are two apparently young people standing in front of a door, with burning flowers around them.  They each hold a single rose as well.

My initial thoughts around this were about boundaries.  Protecting what is incoming is important because what I have within is important to my work and my life. I shouldn’t be expected to take on other people’s shit for them, that’s not what my work is about.  It’s about working through issues, fears, anxieties and coming out the other side without having taken those things on board.

I was recently talking to a friend about vicarious trauma, and I do believe I suffer a little from this.  I don’t believe all the crap that I deal with on a daily basis is my own crap; on the contrary, I believe a lot of the stuff I deal with is inherited or passed along from others.  I don’t have a lot of drama going on in my personal life, but my life tends to lean towards the more dramatic side.

The two people in the card are standing guard to their door – the door is open, so anyone is free to come in and out, but they appear to be almost defending the fortress.  I feel like this means it’s okay for me to let stuff in, but to also let it out again, and to recognise when boundaries are being breached and in turn, take action to defend against my personally taking on thoughts, feelings, etc. that don’t benefit me or my life, or indeed don’t have anything to do with me or my life at all.