If we can share our story
with someone who responds with
empathy and understanding,
shame can't survive.
As vulnerability floats around in my thoughts these days, I began asking myself what is the difference between vulnerability and powerlessness. What came to me is that vulnerability is a choice; powerlessness is not.
Recently, I have felt powerless over the barrage of sadness that is permeating my psyche. Last night in a phone conversation with a friend whom I do not usually go to that vulnerable place of allowing for emotional expression, I consciously chose to go there. The tears came and I noticed the sense of powerlessness lifted and I felt more than ever connected to this person. Who also was able to allow himself to be vulnerable and hold space for me without needing to go into his comfort zone of having to fix it.
When I reflect on this situation, I recognize what would have held me back from allowing for vulnerability would have been a need to maintain a facade of confidence and power, fear of what my friend might think, feelings of not being good enough – all shame-based emotions.
As I close this blog, I encourage each of us to allow our vulnerability to grow and blossom. For me, improv was the seed. Keep in mind, it doesn't need to be big. It can be ever so simple. If you've always had the same hairstyle – try something different. If you love someone and have never told him/her -– tell him/her today. Vulnerability leads the way to connection and the fullness of Being.
*Brené Brown: Listening to shame | TED Talk | TED.com
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