It’s Ok to be Vulnerable
Friends, as we close the year out, I’ve had some thoughts, inputs, and guidance from my heart to share a message with you about vulnerability. Collectively, it’s been a hard year for humans. Sure, there’s been some great moments but also some not so great moments that have turned into days, weeks, months, etc. But it’s what we do with those times that matter most. It’s what we do with those times that determines our future.
Seasons of change bring vulnerability
Yesterday morning, while sharing to my Instagram stories, I discussed how every era of life requires a different version of you. Sometimes that means a completely new version that you’ve never had to embrace before. I choose the word embrace purposely as it represents welcoming change.
Over the past year we’ve faced so much from COVID-19, loss of loved ones, politics, and a shifting economy that comes with massive layoffs and not a lot of space for business owners to generate their normal income. The world is collectively not only saying, “hey, we want a timeout” but “hey, we need a timeout.”
It’s ok to be vulnerable
You know what comes with a timeout? A lot of vulnerability, whether you allow it or not. It’s a space that begs for peace, forgiveness, and surrendering. It says “hold on while I catch my breath for a moment.”
Being vulnerable requires us to be brave in a different kind of way. It tells us to let our guard down and lighten up on the fighter mentality society has so fiercely shaped in us. Being vulnerable requires a bravery that allows us to see the depths of our soul that are so often covered by deadlines, noise, and go-mode.
Think about it, when was the last time you actually sat in complete silence and had a moment to reflect uninterrupted? When was the last time you actually allowed yourself to be vulnerable? We’ve somehow turned this concept into a negative existence in our world. We inadvertantly use it by saying things like “it’s ok, don’t cry” or “toughen up.”
Being vulnerable comes with breathing room
It’s ok to be vulnerable because it allows every part of our being to blow off some steam. It’s in the moments we are most vulnerable that we see the most growth. I get it, it can feel scary as hell or super uncomfortable but I promise you, it’s ok.
In fact, being vulnerable allows for establishing greater strength, stronger relationships, and better acceptance of ourselves. If those aren’t things to desire and go after, I don’t know what are! Who doesn’t want better relationships and self-love in their life?
It’s ok to be vulnerable with healthy boundaries
When I say it’s ok to be vulnerable, I’m not suggesting you swing the doors wide open with whomever is around. As with other things, moderation is key. In an article featured on Well and Good, Dr Manley discusses how there is a difference in being open versus vulnerable and when it’s appropriate to have boundaries.
“Here’s something interesting, though. If you’re able to be wide open and struggle with vulnerability, you actually want to dial back what and how you share parts of your life. ‘For those who want to be vulnerable—not just open—it’s important to learn how to create healthy boundaries,’ says Dr. Manly. ‘Much like locks on a front door, healthy boundaries help us differentiate between those who are safe and trustworthy and those who are not. As safe people earn our trust, we can then choose to be vulnerable with them by giving them the ‘keys’ to the door of our sacred inner spaces.'”
So, what does vulnerability look like?
Vulnerability can look a lot of different ways. It doesn’t have to show up the same way every time. It’s about having the willingness to express your inner thoughts and feelings when in the presence of others where it feels safe.
Here are a few examples of being vulnerable:
- Putting yourself out there even if it means being rejected
- Sharing some of your biggest fears
- Expressing feelings and/or pain you normally wouldn’t share
- Setting healthy boundaries with someone you sincerely care about
It’s ok to take it slow at first. Being vulnerable certainly doesn’t come easy for some, especially our most vulnerable moments are quieted or shunned by society. I look at vulnerability as a super power, one that puts you in the drivers seat of your life.
Summary – it’s ok to be vulnerable
As the year draws to a close this week, I challenge you to take some time and sit with your vulnerability. Maybe it doesn’t mean sharing it with someone you trust right away. Maybe it means sitting with it and allowing yourself to simply feel vulnerable. Whatever it means to you, welcome and embrace it.
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