Humans are incredibly resourceful; history can vouch for that. The success of our evolution has relied on our ability to avoid potential dangers, physically speaking, though we are far more complex than living as single-dimensional beings. Evolution had (and has) other plans. Individually, we live as different pieces to a new age puzzle, chasing job satisfaction, healthy relationships, and personal fulfilment like achieving success in reaching goals while pursuing joy and happiness. There is immense pressure on people to accomplish overall success in virtually every aspect of their lives. This level of stress affects people in various ways, and it is often the weight on our shoulders that quietly develops into unbearable loads as we progress, using the ‘one step forward, two steps back’ approach.
Instinctively, we are feeling beings. A large portion of our brain is dedicated to the control and processing of experienced emotions. These emotions are recalled through our past and present thoughts or the anticipation of the future. As we can appreciate that we’ve gone from being physical survivors to feeling (aka, emotional) survivors of our circumstances; where does such a revolutionised consciousness begin?
Children. Children are great teachers; they have an innate ability to speak their minds and shine their magnificence upon the world. Have you ever noticed that something occurs between the freedom of BEing themselves as young beings and growing into an adult? If you are an adult reading this, perhaps you could help fill in the blanks? What events and situations got in the way of BEing who you want to be? You know, those pieces that led you to believe that it’s not safe to ‘BE’ who you are?
One of my favourite cliché questions I ask people who work with me is; if nothing was in the way, what type of person would you be, and how would you live your life?
These questions often generate a cascade of feelings and thoughts, usually beginning with the familiar ‘what if’ and then the mind does the rest. The mind is wildly creative – a master problem-solver! However, the mind’s thought processes are not always helpful and have a habit of creating complicated narratives that exasperate problems rather than resolve them, further holding a person back from BEing their true self.
“You correct an error by bringing truth to it.” – Wayne W. Dyer
You have many experiences under your belt, and each of them came with lessons gained throughout your life, filtered by how certain people and situations left you feeling. As a result, these experiences left hidden imprints that constitute who you are. And this is okay. It is okay. Substantial transformation first comes with accepting what IS.
“In accepting (or trying to accept) what is, most people are left feeling a great amount of Emotional Vulnerability.”
Emotional Vulnerability can show up often (even daily) for many people. You may know it by other names such as anxiety, uncertainty, rejection, shame, and fear. Who willingly wants to feel these things, right? No one! People who haven’t mastered their emotional vulnerabilities manage by using coping mechanisms such as making themselves busy, saying ‘yes’ when they prefer to say ‘no’, and people-pleasing or behaving in protective patterns. Instead, these behavioural coping mechanisms disconnect people from things they enjoy and the people they love.
“Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.” ― Brené Brown
Being genuinely authentic without vulnerability can be challenging. Our vulnerability allows us to let go of the effort and energy we put into being guarded – to make room for something far more valuable: love, joy, peace, contentment, and stillness. Emotional vulnerability is a learned state of being, and it can take time to feel comfortable and joyous while simultaneously being vulnerable with the people and experiences in your life. However, through life’s challenges is where we discover the most rewarding experiences and personal growth, and it is the emotional vulnerability that serves as an absolute necessity to living an authentic life.
“Out of our vulnerabilities will come your strength.” – Sigmund Freud.