I was watching a Tedx Talks given by Brenee Brown on vulnerability.
She calls herself a researcher and storyteller who collected data on vulnerability for 6 years before writing a book.
Her message is simple:
Vulnerability is synonymous with weakness, being exposed, shame, fear and feeling unworthy.
No one wants to feel these emotions and so our natural response is to block them or numb them. The problem, she says, is vulnerability is also the gateway to joy, love, and self acceptance. When you numb vulnerability, you also numb these other wonderful emotions.
I know I struggle with being vulnerable. I am one of those people who cuts myself off when I’m in pain instead of appearing vulnerable to family, friends and loved ones. I’m learning though you have to be willing to stop controlling these situations. If you let down your guard, expose yourself and share your vulnerability, this is the only way to experience the positive emotions you search for in life.
Sometimes you must be willing to do something, to put yourself out there, with no guarantees.
This works in the many cubby holes of our lives– our careers, romantic relationships and more.
And, I realized how it even applies to the way we interact with fitness and diet. If we walk into the gym every day and do the same exercises then our bodies adapt and we reach a plateau. If we workout to the point of exhaustion every day, but we are unwilling to modify our diets, we might stop seeing significant changes in our bodies.
Being successful, going beyond “the norm” requires us to be open to change, open to possibility … vulnerable to what we do not know but open to it nonetheless.