Miss seven approached me a few days ago gently enquiring if I was ok. My reply:
Of course Honey. I’m great….just busy. I love you – now go back and play with your sister *accompanied by a mindless pat on the head*.
Only I wasn’t ok. I was mulling over a minor disagreement that had taken place earlier, something that I was still carrying round.
With the RUOK initiative taking place last week and promoting the importance of allowing yourself to be more open….lets just say that the irony was not lost.
It also appears that my daughters’ BS radar is pencil sharp. She soon returned, gave me a look, a hug and said
I know what’s wrong. You’re sad because of what __ said
The power of vulnerability
Why do we do fake it?
So often we hide our authentic selves. We learn how to put on a face. Encase our vulnerability with a defended heart.
Sometimes it’s just easier to protect the feelings of another. To ‘suck it up’, move on and pretend. But when and where do we draw the line?
I often find myself treading that fine groove between transparency and authenticity.
How much do I share? What if I can’t find the right words? What if they don’t like me, judge me or laugh behind my back?
When was the last time you were truly vulnerable? Completely honest with yourself and those around you.
Maybe it has been so long that you have trouble showing others who you really are from who you represent yourself as being?
It’s not much of a surprise really. If you consider how often, when we ask someone how it’s going, we get told about their latest job opportunity, best new restaurant or the kick-ass holiday they just returned from.
No mention of the financial challenges endured in the past year, the anxiety that creeps into bedrooms at night or the beloved grandmother who is about to be placed in aged care.
We offer a précis of the highlights, all the while internally encumbered by the darker struggles we keep hidden.
Why do we do that?
Being Authentic and keeping it real.
Nobody has it easy all the time. Life is fraught with rejection, challenges and loneliness.
How often do we skim over the truth or fail to share our true selves with others because we think they don’t want to hear the less than lovely details?
And what about those people who only share the good stuff all the time? How much do you trust them? How close are you really?
Why do we insist on keeping up the facade with one another and with ourselves, even when we know it’s not real?
Vulnerability leads to connection.
Think about the one person or few people in your life that you truly open up to. How did you get to that place?
You got there because there was one moment on one day where you decided to open up to them or they decided to open up to you. You let them in on the rough and the smooth.
Sure you can surround yourself solely with fun-time friends but doesn’t that wear a bit thin after a while?
Arent we wired for those real, deep connections that make us feel a sense of belonging. Those that remind us that we are enough exactly as we are?
I’m not saying you have to bleed all over your blog or cry on a strangers shoulder (unless you want to). Just be honest and real.
People want to know who you really are. They want to hear about your struggles and your fears because we all have them don’t we? We can all identify with hard times as well as good times.
Unless we are showing up in the world as who we truly are and not the polished, show case version, how can we really be there for one another?
This post was inspired by Brene Brown, TED Talk: The Power of Vulnerability. It’s 20 minutes of your life well spent. Check it out today!