I used to believe that vulnerability reflected a sense of weakness, fragility, delicacy, powerlessness, incompetence, incapability and inadequacy ..
… but HOW did I come to hold this belief ? ? ?
As a child I was raised to believe that the world was not a safe place for the vulnerable
As a young woman I was taught that I needed to show strength in order to protect myself
As a mother I nurture, protect and defend my children during their vulnerable years
As a woman I’ve experienced hurt when I’ve exposed my vulnerabilities to men I trusted
As a nurse I’ve seen how the aged experience vulnerability ..
So … no surprise WHY it’s a state of being that I’ve tried my best to avoid
But I’m starting to think and feel a little differently about vulnerability. Although I still find it to be an uncomfortable place to sit, especially when I express parts of myself that I’ve usually kept hidden .. its a place I want to sit or stand more often
How DISGRACEFULLY wonderful (wink) hahahaha … Something I love most about myself is how my external experiences often reflect my internal processes … just as my personal experiences often reflect my professional developments … because there’s an openness and honesty about how and why I do what I do
TO BE vulnerable is to be able to stand in and express our truth
TO BE vulnerable is to have the courage to expose who we really are
TO BE vulnerable is being susceptible to harm, hurt, attack, judgment and criticism
TO BE vulnerable takes courage .. but to gain courage we must first be willing to be vulnerable ..
Brene Brown has a lot to say about vulnerability in her book, “Daring Greatly: How the courage to be vulnerable transforms the way we live, love, parent and lead” … I havent read it yet myself, but its on my list of TO DOs
Sitting with our vulnerabilities can be a wonderful source of healing, but its company can be a little uncomfortable and unsettling. I think its fair to say that we tend to feel most vulnerable during times of loss, when our hearts have been broken. Our hurts often causing us to close up, shut down or turn off, to protect ourselves …
… but what if we did the opposite ? ? ?
What IF … when our hearts have been broken wide open we kept them open ?
What if we flowed with the experience and used it as a rich source of healing & growth ?
What if we privileged our heart breaks the same as we do our heart joys ?
What if we felt safe enough to allow ourselves to feel & flow through the hurt ?
What if we shared our deepest thoughts and feelings with others ?
The less fearful I feel about sitting with and exposing my vulnerabilities, the more my thoughts and feelings change about matters of the heart … I now believe that the purpose of our heartaches are not to hurt us, but to remind us about our ability to love … I now believe that our hearts break when we become attached to an expected outcome, that conflicts with our own and someone elses needs and wants … I now believe that the purpose of heart-break is not to disappoint or punish us, but to break our hearts open and teach us about the importance of self-love … I still believe that our biggest motivator is love, but we tend to focus that love towards others instead of ourselves … I still believe that learning to love without attachment is a difficult concept to grasp, but appreciate how it can better serve us … I still believe that although our happiness can be influenced by another, it should never be dependant upon someone other than yourself
VULNERABILITY … is about standing up and being seen