Here is a talk that was recommended to me about a researcher in social services about Vulnerability. I've never been one to like to dive into the psychologies but this one was quite interesting to me and I realized that I'm starting to feel like a researcher. Here's the link and the highlights:
The Power of Vulnerability
It “changed the way I live and love and work and parent.”
“If you can’t measure it, it does not exist.”
“Life’s messy, clean it up, organize it and put it into a bento box.”
“Lean into the discomfort of the work” is a motto in social work.
“I am interested in some messy topics, but I want to make them not messy. I want to understand them. To hack into these things that I know are important and lay the code out for everyone to see.”
“Connection is why we’re here. It’s what gives purpose and meaning to our lives.”
When you ask people about love, they tell you about heartbreak. When you ask people about belonging, they’ll tell you their most excruciating experiences of exclusion, and when you ask people about connection, the stories they tell you are about disconnection.
Shame is the fear of disconnection. Is there something about me that if other people know it or see it, that I won’t be worthy of connection? It’s universal. We all have it. No one wants to talk about and and the less you talk about it, the more you have it.
We all have that feeling. I’m not _______ enough.
Vulnerability…In order for connection to happen, we have to be seen. Really seen.
This is my chance to beat it back with my measuring stick. I’m going in. I’m gonna figure this stuff out.
The one factor from the thousands of data and stories is that A sense of worthiness. They have a strong sense of love and belonging.
There was only one variable with people who had a believe they are worthy of love and belonging. That’s it. They believe they’re worthy.
The one thing that keeps us out of connection is the fear that we aren’t worthy of connection.
What they had in common was a sense of courage.
Courage, the original defiintion was to tell the story of who you are with your whole heart.
From her research all the people had:
The courage to be imperfect
The compassion to be kind to yourself first, and then to others. We can’t practice compassion with others if we can’t treat ourselves kindly.
They had connection, as a result of authenticity. They were willing to let go of who they thought they should be in order to be who they were. You have to absolutely do that for connection.
They fully embraced vulnerability. What made them vulnerable made them beautiful. They didn’t talk about it being comfortable, nor was it excruciating, they just talked it being necessary.
The willingness to say I love you first. The willing to do something where there are no guarantees. The willingness to invest in a relationship that might not work out.
I couldn’t believe that I had pledged allegiance to research where I couldn’t control and predict.
Research is “to control and predict”
Vulnerability is the core of shame and fear and our struggle for worthiness but it appears also as the birthplace of joy, of creativity, of belonging, of love…
Why do we struggle with vulnerability so much?
We numb vulnerability.
We are the most in debt, obese, addicted, and medicated adult cohort in US History. You can’t selectively numb emotion. Here’s the bad stuff, here’s grief, here’s shame, here’s disappointment. I don’t want to feel these.
You can’t numb those hard feelings, without numbing the affective.
When we numb those, we numb joy, we numb gratitude, we numb happiness, and then we are miserable and we are looking for purpose and meaning
We need to think about why and how we numb.
We make everything that is uncertain to certain.
Blame is “a way to discharge pain and discomfort”
We perfect most dangerously our children.
Children are hardwired for struggle when they get here.
When you hold those perfect little babies, our job is not to say look at her she’s perfect. My job is just to keep her perfect. Our job is to look and say, You are imperfect and your wired for struggle but you are worthy for love and belonging.
To let ourselves be seen, deeply seen, vulnerably seen
To love with our whole hearts even when there’s no guarantee
To practice gratitude with love and joy
For us to say,
I am enough