Feeling Vulnerable Can Be Scary - But Will Create Deeper & Stronger Relationships With Loved Ones.
The term "vulnerable" means having the ability to show up and put yourself in situations that you would have never imagined doing in the first place. Being vulnerable allows for rejection and transparence of one’s self. It is never easy to accept the fact that you are giving up or giving into something that you may have walked into, leading to a different and unexpected path in life.
For me, being vulnerable is equivalent to the unknown. One never knows when someone won’t reciprocate their emotions of love, or get emotionally hurt from a lover’s betrayal. One never knows when someone will be hit by a sickness or mental health illness, but is unable to tell their family to receive messages of understanding. One never knows when a reaction to an action will be taken as regret or opposite, a sense of fulfillment.
In this article, we address how we all have the power to define vulnerability and choose how vulnerable we want to be with others in our lives.
The Fear Of Being Vulnerable Is Real
When we try to be vulnerable, we often face many fears, most notably the fears of being hurt or rejection. As human beings, we naturally tend to avoid situations and experiences that are likely to cause pain and discomfort from revealing to others too much of ourselves. No one wants to expose himself or herself to people that they don't fully trust. That is especially true when thinking about meeting with a therapist and going through the process of sharing our deepest thoughts and revealing out inner, authentic self.
Being vulnerable with even those closest to us, like partners, parents, siblings and children, can be similarly scary and stressful. What we may view as protecting ourselves from pain can often come off to other as being arrogant, closed-minded, cold and uncaring. The reality is far from the truth. Self-numbing behaviors can inhibit ourselves from feeling self-love. Once we begin the process of feeling more comfortable allowing ourselves to being vulnerable, the fear inevitably lessens and becomes a thing of the past.
Vulnerability Reduces The Feelings Of Fear & Increases Safety!
Fear Of Being Vulnerable Leads To Missed Opportunities To Connect
When a person is vulnerable, they are comfortable with the process of exploring their inner thoughts, feelings and emotions. When we aren't ready for that experience, we tend to exert more and more control over our lives and words. Ultimately, through effective and sensitive therapy, we learn that It's a false sense of power and safety, which distracts us from the hard truth that nothing can fully be controlled. Other than how we choose to react in any given moment, nothing else in life is guaranteed. Today's society has rebelled against that truth. Many of us have repressed our openness to experiencing vulnerability by labeling it as a bad or negative moment. Society and our cultural norms teach us to repress our fears, hide them in the "safe" caves of our heart, neatly tucked away from others and the risk of harm or self-exposure. Instead, many people turn towards other outlets, such as violence, video games and other use of external stimuli, to release those pent-up feelings and emotions. The irony is that by giving into the fear of being transparent and vulnerable with the ones we love or who love us the most, we actually prevent that love for growing and lasting long-term.
Therapy Creates Opportunities To Safely Be Vulnerable!
Vulnerability Can Be A Source Of Inner Strength
Kelly Clarkson said it best, “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, stand a little taller, doesn't mean I'm lonely when I'm alone what doesn't kill you makes a fighter, footsteps even lighter.” Through the therapy process, we help clients strengthen their inner-self and core beliefs to allow the experience of feeling and being vulnerable to be something that lets them flourish in their relationships.
We work with couples, men, women, teens and families to safely and sensitively explore vulnerability in their daily life to create deeper connections and more meaningful relationships.