This post comes from our blog intern, Aubrie!
It’s amazing how some people are gifted with the ability to change the way we look at things. Life’s many happenings sometimes seem so incomprehensible that it is remarkable when one individual can make sense of the complex human psyche. It’s interesting to take a step back from life and contemplate both the simple and intricate events that take place at every second in time: Why we act the way we do, why we feel the way we do… what differentiates people from each other. I’ve always been intrigued by this sort of psychology, but after I watched Brené Brown’s captivating lecture, The Power of Vulnerability, I gained a whole new perspective. Through her extensive research and fieldwork Brené begins to explain the unexplained and passes on her knowledge in order to expand listener’s perceptions.
First of all, most of us can agree that connection is the reason why we’re here, right? Everyone thrives off of feeling connected to one another. Whether it be to family, a lover, or even coworkers, we want to feel like we are in it together. But there is something else that everyone experiences that gets in the way of connection… shame. Shame causes us to feel vulnerable and unworthy. When we are shameful and vulnerable we question if we’re ever good enough. Shame and fear are the root of anxiety, self-doubt, and depression. However, the remarkable part about vulnerability is that it is the very same emotion that births creativity, joy and love. When we are vulnerable but also courageous we are capable of feeling authentic and worthy of this connection.
Think back to a time where you felt ashamed. Let’s say the man you thought you would live happily ever after with suddenly broke your heart. You felt down, broken, and defeated. What did you do with that overwhelming feeling of vulnerability? We always have two options. One, we can let it consume us; we can continue to feel defeated and question if we will ever fall in love again, we can question if everything happened as a result of our own failures. Or two, we can use that vulnerability to empower ourselves. We can think, he may have broke my heart but at least I was able to feel what love was. We can have the courage to trust that the uneasy feelings will pass as long as we commit ourselves to happiness.
Brené Brown calls those who choose the second path to be the wholehearted. These are the people that say “I’m just so grateful, because to feel this vulnerable means I’m alive.” By consciously deciding to live wholeheartedly we must believe that we are truly worthy rather than unworthy. Once you decide that that you wish you take the path of courage rather than shame, you must practice positive affirmation each and every day to deal with the lifelong struggle of vulnerability.
Let Yourself Be Seen
Have the courage to be vulnerable to those around you. There is no need to hide your true self. Connection only comes as a result of authenticity.
Love With Your Whole Heart
Love is one of the most beautiful emotions that we are capable of, yet you can’t have love without vulnerability. You have to trust in love. Fear will only hinder your ability to show emotion.
Practice Gratitude and Joy
Taking the time to be grateful allows us to not only connect with ourselves but to feel pure joy in life. It’s the few minutes when we rise out of bed and greet the new day, or when we are alone waiting for the train, to just say “I am thankful”.
I Am Enough
Be kind to yourself. Listen to your body, mind, and soul and believe that you are deserving of happiness.
Get the look: Wrapback Buttondown
+ I highly recommend this acclaimed lecture that will broaden your perception of the world around us. Let me know in the comments what you gained from the talk!
More inspiration from the BLDG 25 Blog.