For so many of us we suffer from the disease of fear. Fear is one emotion that we are innately born with and it is the silent killer that takes over every area of our lives, piece by piece, until it has devoured every part of our being. Unfortunately when fear begins to take over, we lose who we are in it. It builds a wall around our hearts and keeps us bound to abusive relationships, addictions and negative beliefs. Fear creates a mask for us to hide behind so we don’t connect with others. The truth is if we did, the fear of who we really are might come out and then what would they think of us or how would they look at me. Once we’ve gotten to that place shame helps to keep us going further and further away from vulnerability, connection and loving relationships. Fear tells us that being vulnerable is too painful and scares us into believing the lie that has been created. When we live the lie fear truly has a hold on us. It’s at that point that we just exist and we are only able to be as honest with others as we are with ourselves.
The Five A’s of Vulnerability
The fortunate part is when you decide you are tired of wearing this mask, you’re sick of feeling anger or pain, you no longer can remember all the lies you’ve believed or told yourself, you have a way out.
For me, I began with what I call the 5 A’s.
The first is to become Aware:
By becoming aware of what your fear is, is a big step. For so many we go into auto pilot and are never aware of how we really feel about ourselves or situations because we’ve been on cruise control for so long.
The second is to Acknowledge:
Once you’ve become aware of what your thinking and feeling, acknowledge it. Go into it and let yourself actually see it for what it truly is.
The third is Accept it:
Accept it as a part of who you are, who you’ve been, what’s been done and own it, get real with yourself. Be vulnerable with yourself, let your heart know you’re showing up for you. Like honesty if you can’t be vulnerable with yourself how can you be vulnerable with others.
The fourth is to Admit:
Admitting who you really are not only to yourself, but to others is that place in vulnerability that fear can stop us from achieving. Admitting who we are and how we feel can be scary, but the opposite emotion to fear is love and once we decide to start becoming vulnerable we begin to find love from within.
The fifth is to Allow:
Allow yourself the time it takes to be on this journey. Allow yourself to take the time necessary to heal. Allow yourself to be forgiven and go into the vulnerability in the healing process.
Finding Your Safe Place
I know that vulnerability sounds hard, but once you start on the path you are never the same and you don’t look back. I encourage you to find a safe place to open up, a safe person or group. I know that I have those safe people in my life that I can go to and be completely vulnerable with and I have The Vulnerability Challenge Tribes. We all need a place to have a voice that is safe and healthy because once you open yourself up, healing can begin.
“I am a licensed Professional Hair and Makeup Artist working in a small town in the Central Coast of California. I’ve been an Educator for an International Hair Care Company for 4 years and am working with a Non-Profit helping the developmentally disabled. I’ve been so fortunate to have been in this business for 27 years. The one thing that has been with me from the beginning, is a passion to help people feel better about themselves. With my career I’ve been able to meet and mentor young women of different ages and backgrounds. Mentoring has been a way to have a positive impact in the lives of the women I’m working with and a safe place for them to open up to be who they are without judgement or condemnation. My goal for my future right now is to live everyday to the fullest and to be open enough on this journey to share the wisdom I learn.”
Great article Colin. I agree with you, vulnerability is the gateway to authenticity.Comment by Norm D on February 5, 2017 at 1:06 am
Awesome first post Colin!Comment by Michelle Bloom on February 5, 2017 at 6:04 am
Truly inspiring Colin! Being vulnerable does create self acceptance. It takes the mask of perfection away, showing us how imperfect we are, just as we should be.Comment by Sherry L on February 5, 2017 at 6:41 am
There is so much beauty and self-compassion in this post!Comment by TJ Isherwood on February 5, 2017 at 9:27 pm
Loved it!!Comment by Stefania Acioli on February 6, 2017 at 3:18 am
Beautifully said Colin! Your word’s are very inspiring and touched my heart❤ Thank you for putting this together to learn more about how vulnerability is truly the gateway to being authentic and the freedom to remove or masks.Comment by Roni Thompson on February 6, 2017 at 5:29 am
Great blog. I also watched Brene Brown’s TED Talk on Vulnerability and I just gave it a shot! Even though the outcome was not as I hoped, I am still going to stay open and positive.
I think you are very brave. I look forward to more posts.Comment by Jen on February 7, 2017 at 6:20 am
I am so impressed with your open-ness and willingness to be authentic. I have a lot of self-judgment and self-criticism where I measure myself against those who seem to “have it all together”. Thanks so much for sharing and paving the way for others to start shedding those huge weights of shame we carry around. I look forward to unloading some of my self-criticism and replacing it with self-love.Comment by Susana I Michaelis on February 10, 2017 at 4:22 am
This is incredible! What a beautiful thing to open up too and share with the world. I believe you will help change lives for the better with this. Be proud! Thank you for sharing.Comment by Stephanie on February 14, 2017 at 7:06 am