The Power of Vulnerability

The Power of Vulnerability

The wound is the place where the Light enters you. ~ Rumi

Rumi’s quote reminds me that vulnerability is often a gateway for intimacy, both with myself and others. I was talking to a friend at Unity recently and she mentioned how much see enjoyed my post on Bitter Medicine. She appreciated my willingness to be open and vulnerable. I believe that as we more fully embrace our dark, ordinary and even wounded aspects, we also find more of the true beauty, light and depth that we yearn for.

I encourage you to be vulnerable with your self, your family, friends and co-workers. You might be surprised by what hidden gems you uncover.

photography, vulnerability

Here is more photography from Andrew Kilgore, whom I’ve mentioned before. Andrew’s photography really speaks to my heart, encouraging me to open myself to compassion for others. He has spent his photography career being a champion of the down trodden. Andrew helped pioneer advocacy art where art is used to help promote certain causes. His work aims to help us see and understand those we might tend to overlook in our culture. To connect with his photography, I have to be vulnerable like many of his subjects.

Photo by Andrew Kilgore from his Lens to the Soul documentary.

Brené Brown is another advocate of vulnerability. She makes a good case that vulnerability is the key ingredient to having a fulfilling life. According to Brené, it is only when we are willing to be vulnerable that we can find our true self. She also encourages us to face and heal our shame and difficult feelings. As Brené reminds us, we can either face our difficult feelings or numb them. Unfortunately, when we choose to numb them, we also numb the positive feelings. Willingness to be vulnerable is the doorway to creating better connections, intimacy, love and belonging.

Here is Brené’s TED Talk on vulnerability.

As I’ve faced my losses and painful feelings this year, I’ve grown in compassion, understanding and ultimately a growing sense of peace. I realize that no matter what, I will be OK. My essential self is not affected by the play of thoughts, feelings and circumstances through my life. Each new challenge is simply an opportunity for more love and understanding. A chance to dig deeper into the well of being, find my core aliveness and remember that at the level of soul, all is well.

I sincerely appreciate my friends and fellow bloggers who have shown me so much love and support this year as I journeyed into the pain. Thank You Lorrie, Trini, Frederic, Julie, Amanda, Angelina, Eric, Hariod, Shauna, Iana, Annette, Cynthia and many more. 

Blessings, Brad

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47 thoughts on “The Power of Vulnerability

  1. Thanks Denise. Vulnerability is a powerful door. Often when we dare to share our hurts and imperfections, we find our shared humanity, and underneath our true shining self! Thanks for being one of my early and continued supporters. I appreciate you and your courage in facing and sharing your challenges.
    blessings, Brad

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  2. Oh Brad…it has been a pleasure to see you break out of the cocoon…a metamorphosis. ..and now you fly so high and you have left “fear” behind as you explore the other possibilities! I am grateful for our connection and when you heal…you help everyone heal!! Much love ❤

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  3. I was really captivated with this talk by Brene Brown. It is such a wonderful melding of left brain analysis with right brain emotion. It just makes so much sense and it speaks to what I have always felt is most important in my own writing – authenticity and vulnerability. It’s amazing how we can speak of these things with such ease in certain domains and attempt to keep them in hiding in other areas. Case in point, I am truly vulnerable and authentic in my written word. I don’t always live up to those same principles in “real” life. And because of that, my authenticity and vulnerability in both areas suffer. I have actually heard this talk before, but it has struck a different chord for me this time around. I appreciate you sharing your own authentic thoughts and helping us all to truly appreciate the power of becoming and remaining vulnerable.

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    • Hi Dave, I’m delighted that my post and Brene’s talk inspired you to live with more vulnerability in your personal relationships. Your posts certainly embody the full range of emotions. I’ve heard her talk before too and get something new each time. 🙂 I’m happy to be a role model for vulnerability. And I very much appreciate you in my community. Thanks Dave!

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  4. It’s never easy being vulnerable. Or should I say “showing” ones vulnerability. I’ve seen/heard talks from Brene Brown before and I look forward to watching this one. Thanks Brad! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ah yes Brene Brown is amazing, isn’t she? She has a wonderful way of speaking just to ‘you’ and not looking down in any way as she speaks. I once thought vulnerability was a weakness but now I know it actually symbolizes quite the opposite… I really enjoyed this post from you, my new friend.

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  6. Wonderful post Brad, I am shoulders deep in my own darkness and could not have read this at a more opportune moment, currently curled up in a blanket, trying my best to just breathe. It is in this moment you feel like a little angel to me, letting me know I am not alone in facing my own vulnerability. For as Hariod so wisely counsels, believing we are invulnerable only feeds the flame. I am touched to know you are so loved by so many here, me included, in spite of my absence as of late.
    And may I just say, you have excellent taste in photography!
    Thank you so much for introducing me to Kilgore’s incredible work!
    Much love and hand holding from this side of the screen…
    Amanda

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  7. Wow, thanks for reading and sharing your vulnerability Amanda. I’m grateful that my, and Hariod’s, words might bring you some comfort and connection.
    Andrew has a knack for capturing the rawness of people and purposely does not try to get them to smile or put on a face. He inspires me to open more, and consider taking my photography in a new direction.

    Sending warm thoughts and cyber hugs!

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  8. “My essential self is not affected by the play of thoughts, feelings and circumstances through my life. Each new challenge is simply an opportunity for more love and understanding.”

    Inspirational, Brad, for the pain of the journey I know you’ve known this yr. We share in your rewards, the treasure you’ve found in the deep.

    Love,
    Diana

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  9. I appreciate your care and concern Diana. It’s been heartening to finally feel what I’ve read about for years. And I still get caught up in the human drama as most of us do, along with a few more moments of peace and grace. 🙂 Blessings, Brad

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  10. Brad this is one excellent post, Sometimes its not until we reach our own vulnerability and our own lowest ebb that we bring up the power of our strengths.. It often in acceptance of our weaknesses we grow, I know from my own personal perspective in my own low ebb moments and knowing how it feels to be on the ‘edge’ and going through my own Nervous Breakdown in the 90’s .. In hindsight it was the best possible experience I could have gone through.. Because it made me who I am today..

    Your words “Each new challenge is simply an opportunity for more love and understanding.”……….

    I So sooooooo Agree.. Many thanks for sharing your thoughts here Brad..
    Blessings
    Sue

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  11. Thanks Sue. It has been a hard year, but I’m beginning to see and feel the light. I’ve found that my being willing to be open and vulnerable is often what helps shift my perspective and/ or life. And learning to be more compassionate, open and loving are my main guides as I journey forward.

    Thanks for confirming that the challenges will bear fruit if I keep opening and loving! I appreciate your support and encouragement. 🙂

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  12. The topic of vulnerability always stops me in my tracks and the talk with Brené Brown has come across my path so many times from so many directions that it warms my heart to think of it. I love that Rumi quote so much I am going to turn it into one of my Happy Boxes; thank you for enlightening me with the magic of his words I had not heard before. Keep on rocking’ Brad, you are amazing.

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  13. Pingback: Falling Into Place | bloomlisa

  14. Hey Brad, I found your blog several days ago and I have appreciated the consciousness and love you brought here to share with people, it is truly a breath of fresh air, thank you.

    And wow, you really hit a vein of gold with this post! I am so glad and relieved that there are people out there talking about vulnerability and appreciate its power. I have noticed in observing others and also from my own experience, that vulnerability is a quality that everybody respects tremendously, but few people are actually willing to be it. I am still trying to figure out why this is so hard for us, but regardless of the reason for it, I believe that the fact that we all love vulnerability in others shows that everybody recognizes what really matters, because we all have the same heart and the same feeling about what is truly important and beautiful.

    I believe this is tremendously important because it’s very central to what I believe will save this humanity: our actual Humanity. Meaning our true, raw, beautiful feeling, passion, need and fragility, expressed and lived every day as much as possible. Rather than condemning it as unworthy and bad, as is usually the case.

    I found some really helpful stuff about vulnerability and other aspects of humanity in the Humanity card from a set of cards called Cards for Living. You might like to see it. Here’s a link: http://www.cardsforliving.com/html/card-pages/humanity.html

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    • Hey Dirk, I really appreciate your thoughtful reply. It’s very obvious that you care about humanity and vulnerability. It sounds as though you have found ways to embrace vulnerability. I truly believe it’s a precious gift when we can bear our souls and human frailties with others. You covered and expressed the topic quite well. Maybe there is a post in it for you too! Thank you for your kind words and welcome to the community. I look forward to connecting further. blessings, Brad

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