This chapter was so good that I had to break it into multiple parts to be able to most fully share all the good things.
But before we get started, I want to take a moment to be a little vulnerable with y’all.
So I get overwhelmed. I get overwhelmed real easy. I’m not always very good at trying new things, especially alone. I know, it’s funny, I’m an ER nurse and I get overwhelmed by life. I don’t usually get overwhelmed at work because it’s just getting tasks done, I just need to do my job. But when I started this new blog, I had talked to a few different people and been doing reading because I’d been told how you can make money from blogging and to take advantage of that. The kicker is you have to be super consistent. So I put a lot of pressure on myself to be SUPER consistent. I have my weekly Saturday posts and I wanted to do these posts every Wednesday. But this didn’t get posted Wednesday this week because I didn’t have the mental energy to write. Today, I had the mental energy to write, so I’m knocking out what I can. But I was also super overwhelmed. There were a few days in March was I was extremely anxious. I’m a Wellness Advocate with doTERRA and have been putting forth effort into this blog and working night shift full time. And I added a boyfriend into my life too. And all of these things kinda happened in the same week and a half. Talk about potential to get overwhelmed, especially when you have a tendency to get anxious and struggle with perfectionism.
Here’s to blogging when I have the mental energy to do so and not sacrificing my well being for the sake of these extra things that I’m doing. Because the other thing I realized is I enjoy doing these things, as a hobby. I love being a bedside nurse, and I don’t want to leave that world, not any time soon. But I also love blogging and essential oils and the opportunity to be a resource for people.
Now, onto Daring Greatly.
Myth #2 – “I don’t do vulnerability”
When we were children, we used to think that when we were grown up we would no longer be vulnerable. But to grow up is to accept vulnerability. To be alive is to be vulnerable.
I love this quote because it’s so true. If you can be vulnerable, you can have the support system you need to thrive in this life. In nursing school I learned about Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs, of course at the time I didn’t really see the point of this. Now, I see it and I live it. Your physiological needs must be met – food, water, sleep, bathroom. Then safety, if you don’t feel safe it impacts your ability to live your life. Next love and belonging, and this is really where vulnerability comes in. You have to choose to trust someone enough to let them in and grow to love them. Because love is a choice. It’s a choice to say I’m going to choose you, even when it’s hard. If you take the “I don’t do vulnerability” mentality you’re selling yourself short. Brown says “When we pretend that we can avoid vulnerability we engage in behaviors that are often inconsistent with who we want to be”
Let people in. Be picky about you let in, but let people in. The scariness is worth it because of the support that comes from being vulnerable.
Myth #3 – Vulnerability is letting it all hang out
I’ve been kind of alluding to this. Be vulnerable, but be particular who you are vulnerable with. Vulnerability isn’t sharing the depths of your heart with every single person. That does not give you the love and belonging we are designed for. I’ve done that, it leaves you drained, exhausted, anxious, and kinda hating people or at least dreading interacting with people.
The moments you choose to be vulnerable in and the people you choose to be vulnerable with can feel like a catch 22. Because these moments are moments where you’re trusting the person with deep secrets, with scary things. The people you’re sharing with have to have shown you that they are someone you can trust. The basis of vulnerability is trust.
So like I’ve mentioned before, dating someone is scary, it’s scary because you’re learning to trust this person. You’re learning to be vulnerable with them. And there is great risk in that. One of my favorite quotes is “to love at all is to be vulnerable”. You are risking your heart being broken when you’re vulnerable, but I’m telling you, it’s worth it.
“We need to feel trust to be vulnerable and we need to be vulnerable in order to trust”
Brown shares a story about her daughter who told her school friends something, where she was vulnerable with them and they made fun of her for it. Her daughter came home so upset, and didn’t want to be vulnerable with anyone anymore. Which I get. When you get hurt you go into “self protective” mode because you feel like you can’t trust these people to not hurt you again.
Brown then shares her marble jar analogy, which I found very relatable to this topic. The teacher had a marble jar for the class. When the class did good things, marbles got added. When the class made poor choices, marbles got removed. Brown told her daughter to think of her friends as marble jars. When your friends have moments that build trust (acts of kindness, support you, honor you, keep your secrets), add marbles, if they do things that hurt you (make fun of you, hurt you, lie to you, talk about you), they lose marbles. And remember, trust is built one marble at a time!
“Trust is a product of vulnerability that grows over time and requires work, attention, and full engagement. Trust isn’t a grand gesture – it’s growing a marble collection”
Myth #4 (the final one) – We can go it alone
In our culture, there’s very much a “one man for himself” mindset. There’s a mindset that we don’t need other people, or that we’re better off alone. These. Are. Lies.
When we try to go it alone we end up carrying the weight of the world on our shoulders as we build walls around our heart to shield us from the dark, scary world. And we end up falling apart. The shower becomes your favorite place to cry, and you cry in the shower every day. Sometimes you shower just so you can cry and hope to evade people asking questions, or blame the redness of your face on the heat of the shower. It results in you isolating yourself from the world. It results in you being incapable of functioning. It results in severe, unintentional weight loss from lack of appetite and inability to eat.
Refraining from vulnerability prevents you from knowing yourself and being known. It is a disservice to yourself to try and go it alone and avoid vulnerability. And it lands you in a dark scary place. Being vulnerable is scary, but in my experience, the result of not being vulnerable is more scary.
“I also learned that the people who really love me, the people I really depend on, were never the critics who were pointing at me while I stumbled. They weren’t in the bleachers at all. They were with me in the arena. Fighting for me and with me”