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Shame Keeps Us From Being Vulnerable

Shame Keeps Us From Being VulnerableWow, I just finished watching another video of a speaker at the TED conference by the name of Brene Brown. This topic was on shame and how it ties into vulnerability. Brene does such a great job of taking these concepts and bringing them into a conscious form that is easy to understand. I believe part of her success is that she allows the listener to see her as vulnerable. I am just blown away by how powerful this particular video was and am so thankful that it was passed on to me.

You see, I’m afraid to be vulnerable. Yet, I try to be vulnerable. She is exactly correct when she describes that for men, to be vulnerable generally means to be weak in our culture. I necessarily didn’t call it being vulnerable as much as I refer to it as being sensitive. I”m one of those off the chart sensitive people and that just doesn’t work for a male in today’s society. It is a difficult reconciliation for me because I can no longer deny how sensitive I am, but I feel afraid of being mocked by the world for it.

However, my vulnerability goes much deeper than my sensitivity. I see people making statements about unknown things in life as if it were fact. For me, I can not state that these things are fact, but the one thing I know which I can share with others is my experiences. It is my place of strength and certainty because as I have lived through the experiences I have and healed from them, I have found a source of knowledge and wisdom. Yet, for me to share these things, I must allow my vulnerability to be seen, felt, and touched. All too often, when I do this, the critics line up to let me know that what I am sharing, is utter BS!

Watching her video and listening to Brene Brown speak, I had tears in my eyes. I had never heard someone so eloquently speak about shame and how it keeps us from being vulnerable. I had never heard someone speak from the heart in a way that it truly resonated with me. It was the exact message I needed to hear at this moment in time.

I know I have a lot of shame and I could tick off many on my own bucket list. The thing is, I feel almost like I am carrying the shame of a million ancestors on my back and no longer do I wish to be their mule. Never did I stop and think that this shame I carry with me is what is holding me back in life. I didn’t even realize just how powerful it was until I heard Brene speak. It is easy for me to hide in my shell and in my four walls, but that is not what my life is meant to be.

Being vulnerable for me, is sitting there holding someone’s hand and walking through the fears and pain of their life’s experiences. Being vulnerable for me, is opening myself up to travel down the pathway of life doing all I can to use my experience in helping others. I know there is much more out there for me then I am currently doing at this moment, but I also know the shame acts as a thousand pound weight in the bottom of the ocean holding me back.

One of my favorite lines in the video was that vulnerability is the most accurate measurement of courage. Instead of seeing myself as weak, I can embrace my vulnerability as courage. I can lift myself up by seeing through my own eyes, I am not what others taught me to believe, but I am courage. I am not the shame that I have embraced all my life, but I am vulnerability and through my vulnerability, I can rise above the highest storm clouds in my life.

To view the video and believe me, it is a must see video, click this link.

Filed under: Emotions

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