I can feel quite uneasy when feeling vulnerable. I feel naked, as if everyone can see who I am and what is going on inside of me. Let alone, showing vulnerability! This can make me feel more anxious, as then it gives others the opportunity to have an opinion about it, an opinion about me…
A few years ago I shared a personal story about my own divorce with a group of people I did not know. To make things even more scary, a journalist who would write an article about it was also present. I was very nervous and I felt I had told my story in an unstructured and insecure way. But, when inspiring conversations followed, I felt energized, even more than usual! And there was more to come: Inspirational conversations with colleagues and friends, more interviews, a successful and growing company as a coach and trainer, and moreover my personal development and self-worth that strengthened! It makes me feel alive!
A former colleague, very dear to me, Jacqui Brassey, launched her first book this Summer. Following on sharing of her personal story in a TedTalk, a new world opened up with, among other things, a book: “Advancing Authentic Confidence through Emotional Flexibility”.
And last month, an interview for Intermediair (a well-known online work-life platform) with a former client and myself was published. In the interview she shares her story of her struggles with balancing work and life (during and after her separation), showing vulnerability and being open about her wellbeing during this time in her life. Looking at the responses, a true inspiration for others.
If I were to tell you to just be vulnerable, you would look at me like I’d be crazy. It is not something that is easily done, it takes a lot to do so. To be able to show your vulnerability, it is important you know for yourself what vulnerabilities you have. Awareness is key in this. Becoming aware of why you do things, discovering patterns and how they came about, makes you able to distance yourself from it. And when you take a distance you will feel that you are no longer what you do, feel and think, but then you know that you have a choice in your thinking, doing and feeling at any time.
So how do you get to this consciousness? It will require you from stepping out of the daily rush, stopping and reflecting on what you feel, what you think and how you behave. Ofcourse it must be safe enough for you to actually go to that space or talk to someone about it. But trust yourself, you will succeed, you can! If I can do it, you can do it!
And when you stand still, and you start to feel how you actually feel, then see if you can hold it, put your arm around it, and ask what it means, and what it wants from you, what it wants to tell you.
Then ask yourself how you would express that need, in your own deeds, and in your behaviour towards others.
So take some time out, and answer the following questions:
What vulnerabilities do I have?
How do I deal with them?
Do I dare to show them?
If you want, you can share them. I wish you many beautiful moments.