Tuesday, April 1, 2014

The Power of Vulnerability

Vulnerability is absolutely necessary if you would like to have a close connection with others.
THE expert on vulnerability, Brené Brown says:"We cultivate love when we allow our most vulnerable and powerful selves to be deeply seen and known, and when we honor the spiritual connection that grows from that offering with trust, respect, kindness and affection. Love is not something we give or get; it is something that we nurture and grow, a connection that can only be cultivated between two people when it exists within each one of them - we can only love others as much as we love ourselves. Shame, blame, disrespect, betrayal and the withholding of affection damage the roots from which love grows. Love can only survive these injuries if they are acknowledged, healed and rare."

The part of that first sentence that says "we allow our most vulnerable and powerful selves to be deeply seen and known", really gets to the heart of the matter. Our vulnerability is our power because it's the exposure of our deepest truth. This truth includes the whole picture, the good, the bad and the ugly. 
I love when Brené says that vulnerable people are courageous. She says this is different from being brave: “Courage is a heart word. The root of the word courage is cor - the Latin word for heart. In one of its earliest forms, the word courage meant "To speak one's mind by telling all one's heart." Over time, this definition has changed, and today, we typically associate courage with heroic and brave deeds. But in my opinion, this definition fails to recognize the inner strength and level of commitment required for us to actually speak honestly and openly about who we are and about our experiences -good and bad. Speaking from our hearts is what I think of as "ordinary courage.” 
― Brené Brown

Do you speak your truth with all your heart? 
Vulnerable acts are acts that take courage. You don't try to hide your pain, your fear, your failures, your emotions or anything else about yourself. Exposing your true self can be terrifying, but it's the key to intimacy. 
You simply cannot have intimacy if you are don't allow yourself to be vulnerable. I would say that when you are truly completely vulnerable, you are centered and strong because you know that you are worthy of love no matter how imperfect you are. You rely on your strong core (root word of courageous) which is your faith in your inherent value. It takes more strength to share the true story of you than to hide it.
Don't let another's reaction, or your fear of their reaction stop you from turning yourself inside out. Just as important, reserve your judgment and allow others to be completely vulnerable with you. This is scary, but I promise you that you won't die. Instead, you will start the process of deep connection. 
Deep, true friendship is built on the sharing of truths, imperfections and secrets. At some point in getting to know someone, you had to take a leap of faith and share these things. 
This isn't about trust, this is about knowing that who you are is no less valuable or worthy than anyone else, no matter what your story is.  This is the only way that anyone will ever truly know and love you for who you truly are. No one can know you if you don't share the truth of who you are and no one can love you for who you are if they don't know you. 
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