So, here is something I think about frequently.
Vulnerability. Being vulnerable.
1. capable of or susceptible to being wounded or hurt
2. open to moral attack, criticism, temptation, etc.
3. (of a place) open to assault; difficult to defend.
I think it is human nature to resist being vulnerable. (Thank you, Captain Obvious). As obvious as the reasons seem, I’m still gonna go ahead and say them. (Well, what IMHO I believe the obvious reasons are).
1. We are afraid of being hurt emotionally.
2. We are afraid of being judged.
3. We are afraid of being considered weak.
4. We are afraid of being taken advantage of.
5. Super obvious one- mostly no one likes to be physically wounded or assaulted. Except maybe UFC guys, they seem to be okay with that. I’m sure there are some others that are also ok with this. But I digress, as I’m not really here to talk about the physical wounding and assault possibilities of being vulnerable.
6. Overall, we are afraid of a variety of bad and painful things happening to us if we show our vulnerability, and we will be weakened, or viewed as weakend.
However, again IMHO, I personally believe the opposite. I view the ability to be vulnerable as strength, and as a chance for beautiful opportunities between human beings, and in life, that may otherwise be missed.
I struggle with myself on if I am good at allowing myself to be vulnerable or not. I think in many ways I am. I think I’m not afraid to put myself out there emotionally for others. I’m not afraid to let people in, or to dig right in with them. I’m not afraid to be me. I think I’m not afraid to take risks that might end up leading me to some pain or trouble, but most often lead me to some beautiful opportunities and people. I know I have a hard time opening up about my struggles. I hesitate to reach out to people sometimes when I really need to. I struggle to admit that sometimes I am not ok.
I have always considered vulnerability to be a strength. But over the past few months I’ve been debating with myself about that. A few years ago, I got these tattoos to remind myself to always be willing to take those risks, and to always wear my heart on my sleeve, no matter how difficult that gets.
I’ve questioned that over the past few months (not getting the tattoos, but if I still was able to fully believe in the reasons I picked them). And I think that is part of what has contributed to me feeling a little lost. Questioning myself and something that has always been an important view and value to me. So, as I am trying to recover myself, I am writing this to remind and reinforce how important it is to me personally. I am going to continue to believe, and improve my ability to be a bit more vulnerable (In the right ways. Remember I’m not talking about being vulnerable to assault or physical wounding. So don’t punch me in the nose to help my quest).
And the beautiful thing is, its working! As I have opened up and put my struggles out there, many incredible people have reached out to me and made a huge difference in ways I never could have imagined. Which only further solidifies my belief for me, because it is being reinforced by the one thing I feel is important in this world – human interactions and relationships.
On a related and ending note, I think that’s why I love to cuddle up and sleep with my babies (ok, and my cats). We lay there together in our most vulnerable physical state, and it creates nothing but physical and emotional closeness and bonding. Well, honestly, there is also some physical wounding there, because they can sometimes kick like machines in the night. Anyways, it’s comforting to me. The relaxed state of being close and vulnerable together.