There is NO way I would have been in a place to meet & marry Danny after my divorce if I had been crippled by fear. There is no way we would have connected as we did if either of us had been holding back.
This post is about the second step I could identify in my own journey of becoming more vulnerable - more willing to share, connect, be comfortable with myself regardless of my circumstances, etc.
I know many of us will have different journeys, and none of them will be exactly the same. But many people wanted a more nitty gritty picture of how I went from feeling zero vulnerability to being feeling it ALL THE TIME.....I'm doing my best here to explain it, in case it's helpful to anyone.
See my STEP 2 here.......
STEP 2: LET GO OF FEAR. (In case you missed my STEP ONE, read that here :)
Fear held me back from really living. Despite having very loving parents who raised me to have confidence & worth & love - - - I found myself in a 7 year marriage where I no longer felt those things. I guess I hadn't fully learned to OWN my own worth yet, so I was prone to wrongfully thinking that my circumstances or how others treated me determined my worth. THAT LED TO GREAT FEAR!
-Fear that I wasn't really loved.
-Fear that I couldn't look a certain way or act a certain way because that might compromise how my spouse felt about me.
-Fear of the sadness I would feel if he did in fact leave me & publicly reject me & divorce me.
-Fear of how I would face a single life in the state I was in.
-Fear that I could never heal from the hurt & the sadness that I felt.
-Fear that others probably didn't see my worth, either, since he didn't.
-Fear that I would never be loved by someone who did actually love me.
-Fear that I would never have a family.
As you can see, in those sad days, every move was driven by FEAR...because it felt as if my worth was on the line.
BUT....THOSE FEARS CAME TO AN END. :) :) :)
And it wasn't because of a divorce (that came a year later). It wasn't because my ex-husband started loving me. This is key: My circumstances didn't change. His behavior didn't change.
My fears came to an end because I discovered my worth.
You see - for me, the greatest result of knowing deeply that I was truly worth something was that......I knew I would *STILL* be worth something...
EVEN IF unfortunate things happened to me...
EVEN IF my husband left me (which he did)
EVEN IF I never had kids (which I have not been able to)
EVEN IF I did something embarrassing (which I do all the time, including on this blog. ha! :)
EVEN IF my voice shook or the perfect words did not come out of my mouth (daily)
EVEN IF someone disapproved of me (it happens)
EVEN IF I made a fool of myself (yep)
EVEN IF my worst nightmares came true (yep)
Having deep, deep worth means that your performance doesn't matter. Others' behavior towards you doesn't matter. Outcomes don't matter. You know that you have worth no matter what happens - just as you are! Right now! With all your flaws! No matter what others say or do!
With this perspective, I hope you can see that THERE IS NO LONGER A NEED OR A PLACE FOR FEAR!!! :) :)
In fact, as you start to follow STEP ONE and tap into your self-worth, there's a chance that letting go of fear will not be that difficult. It may actually just start to melt away on it's own. And, WELCOME TO THE WORLD OF VULNERABILITY....with a sense of worth & without crippling fear, vulnerability will just be a part of who you are. You'll soon be connecting with whoever the heck you want. And it will be meaningful. Or not. And you'll feel your worth just the same.
[And I'll admit, believing that God smiles upon each & every one of us has helped me leaps & bounds to feel my worth. I hope you can tap into that, too, or find a constant stream of love & approval from whatever your great spiritual influence is in your life.]
And now, for the fun stuff....
What can you do to practice being vulnerable in your new fearless skin??
-Be comfortable & happy with who you are.
-Share a joke and not care if anybody laughs.
-Open your mouth & share something when you have something to say.
-Reach out to people you don't know.
-Dance crazy in the kitchen.
-Walk down the beach and feel beautiful.
-Tell someone you love them.
-Do something bold and scary.
-Speak your "truth" or your story in public.
-Raise your hand in a class & share an experience or your perspective.
-Act fun & sexy (or just goofy) around your lover.
Note: If you are still feeling like it's hard to let go of the fear, that could be a sign to go back to STEP ONE & work on developing your worthiness some more (fear is a great little reminder to us! So if it happens, embrace it for that reason :). And by the way, tapping into your worth really isn't a one shot deal :) It's something I think we'll likely need to revisit over & over & over (I definitely do!)....and holy crap, there are some pretty heavy duty fears in this world. But the process of going back to step 1, then step 2, will become easier & easier & quicker & quicker the more you do it. And even for the really, really difficult things, even if it's harder to be free, even if it involves our deepest loved ones....you will still know the process....you will still know what you need to do to turn things around & to free yourself of fear. And it's worth doing, for all of us....because fear does not stop death, it stops life.
I would LOVE to hear how this goes for you. I hope so much that you'll find a way to start your own journey. I am rooting for you all so much, you can't imagine.
And to get you envisioning the possibilities, what is a fear you'd like to do without? :) :)
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