Opportunity for Growth…Be Vulnerable

Sometimes you just stumble onto greatness. Today’s lesson came wrapped up in a newsletter that I don’t often get to, but the tagline hit me:

Be Vulnerable

Hmm, how intriguing! As I sat to watch this, I fell more in love with Brene Brown’s words, as her research spoke to my rational brain and her honest delivery warmed my soul. I wholeheartedly encourage you give yourself 20 minutes of uninterrupted space to take this message in. However, I will also share my thoughts.

Brene Browns’s research first found that in order to connect to others, we have to be vulnerable. For someone who just loves feeling a sense of community, I understood her point. How often in dating advice columns or reruns of Sex and the City, do we hear that we need to open ourselves up, even if we get hurt? In theater, we talk about the need to break down walls. In the written word, we see Tennyson tells us that’s its better to have love and lost, then never to have loved at all. We know these words, but do we truly listen them?

Brown’s work also notes that we need to believe that we are worthy of love and belonging. What better motivation do you need? Kiss that child, call that friend, smile at that stranger, hug that colleague. Spread the belief that all are worthy. Everyone should be at home on this earth.

In order to belong as a group, I think we need to share. When I best connect with others in my life, I often find that the point in which I’m most alive is in sharing our personal stories. What better way is there to ‘meet’ someone, then for them to trust you with their hurt, their triumphs, their weaknesses? That’s why when Brown defined courage, it was such an awakening for me: telling the story of who you are with your whole heart. How much more vulnerable can one be?

As the presentation goes on, Brown becomes wittier, and my inner comedienne loves her for it. It is clear that even this talk is a journey of vulnerability, as she speaks about her struggle with her findings, her need for therapy, and need for order.  Brown’s violent fight in not wanting to be vulnerable reminds me of my battle with sleep and control. Here they are, and how I don’t want to believe that I must give up control. Again,  I am learning to say yes to the ‘bad‘, like Rumi, like improv, like this blog all remind me to do!

My journey with Brene Brown today was not only an affirmation of my personal struggles, but a master class in reminding me of what is important in my life. If I want to continue to grow into the greatest me… I best get comfy with the uncomfortable.

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