I loved it so much, I had to share it here.
Brene has researched why there are those that have a deep sense of belonging & a strong sense of feeling worthy to connect with others, and why there are those that don't. As you can imagine, I LOVE THIS TOPIC :)
Brene calls the people who believed they were worthy, the "wholehearted". She found that they had something in common........
They all had COURAGE to tell their story with their "whole hearts". They had the courage to be imperfect & to be vulnerable with others! They fully embraced VULNERABILITY and believed that it made them more beautiful. As a result of this authenticity, they were able to CONNECT more fully with other people. She says you cannot connect with others unless you let go of who you think you should be & embrace who you actually are!
I love this. I believe it to be true (I see that Cup of Jo is discussing authenticity, too!)
I've seen a strong connection between vulnerability and worthiness firsthand in my own life. I remember the days when I did not know my own worth. You can bet that I was not about to expose myself for the world to see. I already disapproved of who I was (mostly because at the time my husband disapproved of me as well & I had not yet learned how to separate myself from that), and frankly the thought of being vulnerable and risking being disapproved of by even one more person was too much to bear. At the time, my good friend put together an awesome website showing before & after pics from renovations. He wanted to highlight my newly renovated Brooklyn apartment. After all his hard work + a few weeks of having the photos of my home online, I requested to have them taken down. There may have been a negative comment from one of his readers about "all those white walls & cabinets" - I can't remember, exactly, but what I do distinctly remember feeling was that I couldn't take one more OUNCE of disapproval. The criticism I was already experiencing consumed my every breath. My life was all about guarding & protecting myself from even the tiniest additional smidget of disapproval...I literally couldn't take one drop more. This meant protecting myself from friends. It meant sitting in church in silence, not offering a WORD of participation or commenting during a class. It meant looking at others and feeling like they were living. I was just hiding - - connected very little to no one.
But, as you may know from a former post.......I finally figured out my worth. This was the most amazing thing that ever happened to me. And with that, came COURAGE & VULNERABILITY...almost automatically! I distinctly remember being at church on the last Sunday before my husband left the country and never returned. I was with the group of amazing women in Brooklyn. There was an opportunity for people to stand and share their thoughts - their stories - their truth. I stood. I bawled. I shared. No one knew that my husband had a ticket to leave. But it didn't matter. They knew my truth that day. It was the first time I'd ever voiced it publicly. And those that heard it say they will never forget it. To this day I feel greatly connected to all those women who heard my courage that day...and to everyone who has heard it since, including my dear Danny. [You may have noticed that our love letters were a complete offering of vulnerability to each other! :) - we gave everything that we had to give & celebrated it, whether or not it was to be received.] There is power in being vulnerable. There is power in sharing our truth, even when we feel imperfect. I like to call it LOVE. :)
I know this now. And that is why I freely open my heart and soul to you all. Love is the most powerful force in our lives. It's what we all want to have more of. It's what we want to be able to offer others. And I know that to have love & connection, we have to be willing to be vulnerable...we have to be willing to be who we are and to offer that to others.
Thank you for letting me share my truth with you daily on this blog.
Thank you for sharing your truth with me.
I'm thankful for this life where we can do this.....where we can learn over time to become more vulnerable both as we are seeking truth and also as we are sharing our truth with others. It doesn't matter what stage we're in......it connects us just the same.
Love to all,
P.S. I am now not sensitive about what someone might say about my minimalist white walls! haha. Sheesh. Seems so silly now.
P.P.S. In your own life, have you noticed a correlation between vulnerability/authenticity & feeling a deep connection with others? All comments welcome!
And how about we all commit to having COURAGE this week. Let's tell our story with our whole hearts; let's have the courage to be imperfect; let's believe that vulnerability is what connects us to others! :)