One of my favorite TED talks is by Brené Brown on the Power of Vulnerability. The premise is that connection is why we’re here, and in order for connection to happen, we have to allow ourselves to be seen.
She encourages us to take off our masks, to have the courage to be imperfect, the strength to love ourselves first, and the guts to let go of who we think we should be to become who we really are.
Inspired by her incredible talk, here are five ways to experience the power of vulnerability so you come alive to your most authentic self:
1. Be real. If you’re scared, say you’re scared. If you don’t know, say you don’t know. If you made a mistake, say you made a mistake. If you feel hurt, say you’re hurt. If you’re in love, say you’re in love.
2. Act with no guarantees. Ideas are safe. The idea of true love, the vision of a better world, the image of your perfect lifestyle. We can sit safely in our imaginations all day or we can fully commit to taking action, embracing the notion that we might fail or get hurt.
3. Ask for help. By admitting your weaknesses, you make room for other people’s gifts.
4. Get rejected. No makes room for the right Yes.
5. Embrace negative emotions. When we numb sadness and pain, we numb joy and happiness. Feeling the depths of our lows enables us to fully feel the depths of our highs. It’s all connected.
To be vulnerable is to be deeply seen. It’s to love with your whole heart and to put yourself out there. To feel vulnerable is to be alive—to exist as your most beautiful self.