Exploring the Advantages of Vulnerability
Vulnerability - the act of intentionally sharing your emotions, shameful experiences, deepest feelings, and thoughts with others - can lead to a deep sense of anxiety, worry, and stress. Whether you are expressing your true feelings of love or sharing a traumatic event that happened to you, you are opening yourself up to the potential of judgment, shame, and/or emotional harm from the person you are seeking to connect to.
You never know how people will respond to your transparency.
You never know if they’re going to honor your vulnerability with love or pain.
When you allow the fear of what may happen when you are vulnerable overtake your ability to open up and express, you are limiting your ability to potentially receive responses of love and support.
Living a vulnerable life comes with its risks - but the benefits it provides to your self-love journey and social relationships, outweighs the fears that attempt to keep you bottled up inside. Vulnerability is a way to connect with those you desire to experience an authentic relationship with.
❓But what if I opened up to others before and been hurt?
🧩 Cry. Feel it. Give yourself the permission to release the hurt and the pain associated with the experience. One person's inability to honor the safety you felt to confide in them provides the clarity you need to no longer pursue a deep connection, but it should never change your ability to be who you are. Understand that your ability to trust and express yourself, is where your power lies…and not everyone is worthy of experiencing you in that way. Those who have earned your trust, don’t deserve to be robbed of getting to know the beauty of who you are as a result of the ugliness of others you encountered.
Don’t close up. Don't hide your uniqueness.
❓Should I forgive those who took advantage of my vulnerability?
🧩 Forgiveness is an act of self-love that should be performed to help your healing journey. Whether you receive an apology or not, you must forgive. It’s important to know that when people hurt you, it’s because they're hurting. Somewhere along their journey, they most likely encountered someone who took advantage of their vulnerability….and instead of choosing to cry, feel, and give themselves the permission to heal, they carried it with them; choosing to close up, become hard, and allow the pain to permeate through their decisions. If you choose not to forgive and release these feelings, you only contribute to the cycle of pain that leads to more heartbreak, shattered souls, and untethered hearts. As you strive to become the best version of yourself, remember; the word of God reminds us to “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as Christ God forgave you.” - Ephesians 4:31-32 NIV
Forgiveness is an act of grace; recognizing that none of us are perfect and we all make mistakes. What if God chose to hold a grudge towards you for your shortcomings, sins, and iniquities?
We all have been hurt. When you choose to forgive, it’s an act of love….for yourself. Forgiveness doesn’t necessarily mean to re-connect; allow that choice to be made wisely, considering the acts that led to the breaking of trust. This is a decision that only you can make. If you choose to reconnect, it’s important to have a vulnerable conversation; share how that made you feel and the expectations you have as you move towards rebuilding the connection.
Loving ourselves through the process of owning our story
is the bravest thing we will ever do. - Brene Brown
Here are 4 Benefits to Emotional Vulnerability
1. Reduces Stress - When you choose to express yourself, you give the thoughts and feelings embedded inside of you a voice. Failure to do so can increase overthinking, anxiety, and fear of judgment; which all have the power to induce stress-based thoughts, feelings, and actions. Vulnerability - although you never know how you may be perceived - keeps your mental health aligned with an optimistic view point. By sharing and expressing yourself, your goal is not to be judged, shamed, or ridiculed; it’s to be seen, loved, and connected. If you lead with that intention, you more times than not, end up being a recipient of love, connection, and support.
2. Improves Confidence - Vulnerability improves your confidence. It shows that you are whole within and any outside commentary, allowed in by you, simply adds to your wholeness and well-being. How you choose to respond to negative responses, experiences, and thoughts of others - says a lot about you. When you smile through it and remain yourself, despite their attempts to hurt you, you are developing the inner confidence to stand in the face of challenges and adversity; fully aware of and in love with yourself. That’s attractive!! It takes practice to get there but the only way you arrive is by experiencing the ridicule and choosing to remain you.
3. Identifies Your Soul Family -
Your people can only find you if you're brave enough to be yourself.
There are parts of you that you have yet to discover.
There is a greater love that you have yet to find.
There are experiences that are far beyond your imagination…and it’s all waiting for you.
Life is waiting for you.
When you are brave enough to be yourself, you are sending out a signal that allows those who are meant to be in your life….to find you. This takes vulnerability.
4. Builds Trust and Intimacy - This goes without saying. When you open up and feel safe to do so, you are showing the person that you trust them and want to develop a deep relationship. When your expression is taken in, they are mutually showing the desire to do the same. Vulnerability is how you develop trust. It’s how you grow to share intimate thoughts, feelings, and emotions with the person you are connecting to.
Vulnerability - the act of intentionally sharing your emotions, shameful experiences, deepest feelings, and thoughts with others - can lead to a deep sense of anxiety, worry, and stress..but it doesn’t have to. Living a vulnerable life comes with its risks - but the benefits it provides to your self-love journey and social relationships, outweighs the fears that attempt to keep you bottled up inside.