Vulnerability, Self & Renewal


There has been a lot of talk about vulnerability lately.

Vulnerability seems to be the topic du jour on any given blog/Facebook post/op-ed…you name it. Thank you, Dr. Brené Brown… That woman has even been on Oprah! She gotta be on to something.

Opening up more to let more in. Sounds easy. Obvious, even. Courageous. But the reality of that opening is that when you really OPEN, you are letting it all in.

And here comes the scary part: when you open up like that, you are swinging wide the floodgates of potential heartache. Hurt. People do shitty things — knowingly or unknowingly — leaving you a pile of mess on the floor to sift through like your dirty laundry on a Sunday morning. Sometimes this is what opening up entails and who wants that?

Most of us (finger turned in direction of self) avoid that like the PLAGUE.

But here is the thing: what we are avoiding most isn’t necessarily the hurt, but rather the shame associated with that rejection.

What is it about shame that feels so terrible? Dirty, even. So horribly, painfully awful, as if our entire identity and belief in self could be completely compromised over one discord. Nothing in nature works perfectly all the time. Earthquakes rumble, fires burn, hurricanes flood… Shit happens. And we allow it and accept it because it is how we see things…  That it is the “season.” That they are a part of the whole. And we pick up the pieces with courage and move forward in life.

Renewal is nature’s constant theme.  — Elizabeth Kubler Ross

How many times have I heard that (out of my own mouth, even), but WHY is it that I only make connections with people around me right when it is time to move to another city? Could it be that when it is time to move we take more risk in letting others in because we fear rejection less (i.e., I am leaving anyway, so who cares if they don’t like me?)

One thing is for damned sure. Sharing oneself is a step in the direction of being vulnerable. And by far, this is the fastest way to growth, wellness, and happiness.

So go on. Put yourself out there.

Share your story. You never know what will connect with others, what will resonate in their hearts and make them want to share more with you. Because that joy, that union, that joining of two forces, that two-peas-in-a-podness, that LOVE, is most certainly the spice of life, is it not?