Here is the second TVC Blog and the first one with a guest author. Michelle Bloom has been through a lot in her life, including being homeless. Now that she has found her way, she is sharing her wisdom to help others see the light.
Strength through vulnerability
When we hear the word “Vulnerable”, perhaps a few negative images come to mind. Many associate vulnerability with weakness or feelings of guilt and shame. What if I were to tell you something that might completely change the way you look at allowing yourself to be vulnerable? Not only can being more open about who you are change the way that others perceive you, it can also change the way that you view yourself. In my own experience, sharing my story has not only strengthened old relationships, it has also allowed me to form exciting new relationships. It was only through allowing myself to be vulnerable that these changes in my life were possible. You might be asking yourself “How can being more vulnerable be a positive in my life?” The simple answer is that when we are vulnerable, we are also more honest with ourselves and with others. It is with this self examination that personal growth begins.
Beginning the process of sharing
While the concept of sharing deeply personal details of our lives can seem daunting, it can also be an extremely freeing experience. When you share what makes you feel most vulnerable, it slowly begins to lose it’s power over you. It begins to feel more natural to express your feelings without any fear of shame. In my situation, others began sharing their own stories with me, because they related to my experiences. It was through this personal sharing process that deeper bonds were cemented. Not only were people encouraged by my ability and willingness to articulate my feelings, they were positively impacted by it! Those closest to me have also become more open and receptive to what I have to share with them. You begin to think of vulnerability as an art form. Honing your communication skills takes practice. The more frequently you use these skills the better equipped you become to use them.
Personal Growth and Connection
Sharing some of what made me feel most vulnerable has allowed me to heal old wounds. When I discussed my struggles openly, I became more aware of the areas in my life that I had grown. I became aware of those areas that required more attention in my life as well. I began to feel a sense of peace and purpose in my life that had previously eluded me. When we express ourselves more openly and honestly, others begin to see our true nature. The process of allowing ourselves to be vulnerable forges connections on a powerful new level. The artificial components in any of our relationships are suddenly nonexistent. When we are honest about what makes us feel vulnerable, our relationships become more meaningful. We begin to seek out others who want to connect with us on more than a surface level. Those things that once made us feel a sense of shame in our lives suddenly become something that empower us. I found a better version of myself after I began this process of being vulnerable. I found a person that others relate to, connect with and even admire. When I overcame my shame from past experiences, I also began to overcome my fear. I view vulnerability in terms of being a whole person. We are complete when we are willing to acknowlege all aspects of our true selves. We no longer allow shame to keep us silent. We begin to embrace who we are at our core, and begin to love ourselves. Our unique experience and perspective becomes something that we value in spite of our inner struggles. We take off the masks that we’ve worn perhaps our entire lives and we become real.
“I’m an aspiring writer who believes in making a contribution to my community. As I’ve gotten older, I have become more of an activist. I write about the homeless, domestic abuse survivors, and those who live in poverty. There’s not really anything particularly glamorous about my life, but I do like to believe that I have made a positive impact in the lives of others.”
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