Vulnerability…

Roses in Victoria, BC
Roses in Victoria, BC
“I was shy of speaking. I was full of feelings and ideas I could not express to anyone.”– Anais Nin, The Novel of the Future

 

A week ago I had a eureka moment about vulnerability. I’d  been privy to quite an extraordinary experience, something I can’t really share as it’s not  my story to tell. However, it got me thinking about the benefits of vulnerability.

I’d never really thought of vulnerability as being beneficial before. In fact, I’d always viewed vulnerability as being a shortcoming. Nonetheless, during my moment of revelation, I suddenly realized that it takes a lot of strength to share a weakness, so the weakness becomes a strength. To me, that’s a mindblowing paradox.

When you make yourself vulnerable, you never know how it will be taken. We’ve probably all exposed ourselves to the wrong people. Exposing oneself is terrifying and takes a lot of courage. We all know the feeling of uncertainty we have at times. It’s not fun!

I made myself vulnerable online by sharing my writing and thoughts with people. Not a big deal for some but it definitely was for me. I’m also making myself vulnerable right now by sharing more personal thoughts, something outside my usual book reviews and social commentary. Again, not something I necessarily find it easy to do.

I realized that, although it often gets a bad rap, vulnerability is part of being human. How often are we really encouraged to be vulnerable and to share? How different would the world be if we were all a little more vulnerable? Cliche and trite as it sounds, I think vulnerability can be purifying and healing. It can also encourage sharing, and there is definitely strength in sharing.

What I witnessed the other day were displays of authenticity brought about by vulnerability. They made me question my standpoint.

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11 thoughts on “Vulnerability…

  1. “L’humain ne s’offre que dans une relation qui n’est pas de pouvoir”, wrote Lévinas. Vulnerability is a way of abolishing power wars, but it can also trigger them off, hélas.

  2. I love this post. I find myself moving back into the cave of trusting almost no on. Too many times of having something thrown in my face to hurt me during an argument. I wish I could be like this again.

  3. I saw this and thought of this post!
    It’s from this collection

    Vulnerable
    by Elma Mitchell

    Everything is vulnerable at sunrise.
    Houses are blurred at the edge by the creeping light.
    They are not yet upright, not yet property.

    Inside the houses
    Bodies and beds are still to be disentangled,
    Naked, bearded, sheeted, flowing, breathing,
    With no cosmetic except the morning’s colouring.

    No body has had time to put on its uniform
    To arm itself with the safe and usual phrases,
    To start counting, considering, feeling hungry,
    Being man or woman…

    They lie scattered, invisible, soft, lovable,
    Under the surreptitious hands of the sunrise,
    The touching light.

    They are not yet upright, not yet property.

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