Updated: Aug 20
Vulnerability is beautiful and honest, they said. It's being strong, some said. I am, a walking open wound, my ego said. I am..., my soul said. I’ll keep you safe, the divine said.
Vulnus in Latin means wound. Vulnerare is the verb, meaning to wound. Vulnerability is the susceptibility to be wounded.
Vulnerability takes great courage because it comes from the heart space. It is the most honest we can be, which is why it carries great risk. Dr. Brené Brown is the ultimate researcher of our time on this topic. After listening to Dr. Brown, I was perplexed by the number of people shying away from vulnerability. I spent my life carrying my vulnerabilities on my forehead. It was as though I was flaunting my wounds. When people took advantage of that, as they often did, it did not deter me. I thought I was being kind and courageous. In truth, I was subconsciously looking for connection, not realizing I was inviting psychopaths and narcissists into my life. After a while, it took a serious toll. There is so much heartbreak we can endure before we collapse. I would not recommend being recklessly vulnerable. As Dr. Brown reminded us, “Not everyone has earned the right to hear our story.”
What is more important than being vulnerable is understanding how sacred it is. Exposing your wounds to those, who did not earn the trust to see them is an act of self-destruction. Dr. Brown also pointed out that JOY is the most terrifying emotion. This hit close to home. My motto for many years was, “I don’t want to have anything to lose.” Joy was something to be feared. It was usually followed by a divine balancing act and attracted potent envy that would knock the best of us off our high horse.