Recently the conversations I have had dance and twirl and spin around the topic of vulnerability. I am not referring to taking up a magnifying glass to inspect the actual definition of the word, but rather a whole hearted attempt at being open, honest, real. Why am I bothering with being vulnerable?
Well, I’ve listened to and have been inspired by a TED talk by Brene Brown recently called, “The Power of Vulnerability,” and in her talk she articulates the desire for connectivity and the shame (fear of disconnection) that prevents the very thing we want. (The link is in the previous post). This awareness of vulnerability coupled with my nearly obsessive habit of capturing my life with words makes me ask myself hard questions! In writing I am able to process my days by actually quantifying the things that happen in my life. I like to be able to look back, see what happened according to me, and evaluate. Recently, I was examining the friendships I made this last year.
This is what I found: 100% of the people that I felt the closest to were the people that I risked sharing REALLY intimate things. I also found that the opposite was not necessarily true for me. What I mean is that if someone shared something profoundly personal with me, the same connection was not necessarily formed unless I also shared. Being known and knowing others is an important part of life, connection and relationship. I’m learning how to be more vulnerable mostly through trial and error really.
Here are some questions I’m asking myself…
Does the movement towards becoming vulnerable count even if steps are nearly imperceivable to an outsider’s eye?
Does vulnerability EVER become easier?
Will my capacity to be vulnerable grow with use, like a muscle?
Can acts of courageous vulnerability only translate into either great disaster or phenomenal gain?
Sure it is easier to not share, confess or speak out whatever is actually going on in our very human hearts. And let’s not be dumb, we MUST be discerning because not everyone DESERVES the RIGHT to hear those things close to your heart.
In my life I want to take steps that maybe only I will notice towards being vulnerable. I have no intention of ridiculously exposing myself to anyone I meet, or obsessively sharing with everyone I walk along side. I want to admit when I’m wrong and apologize. I want to tell someone I love them when I do. I want to continue forgiving my real dad for not being the father I thought he was supposed to be. I want to tell someone when I think they are great, or wrong, or being a jerk. I don’t want to miss out on the treasure found only in people’s hearts or sharing with others what is in mine. I believe God is the one that helps us do that. He is good. All the time God is good.