Being vulnerable is to be exposed to the possibility of being attacked physically or emotionally.
We are wired biologically to avoid vulnerability. Yet, humans are also social creatures that thrive on having people around us that we love. Loving takes trust and that means making ourselves vulnerable, to let people into our lives and be authentic. We do this in hope that the rewards would be worth the risks of vulnerability.
Many of us don’t realise that vulnerability is inevitable. No matter how we build emotional walls and psychological barriers, we still leave a door to let people in. The fact is, we are even more vulnerable without the social connections.
Stop trying to appear as though you aren’t vulnerable. No one is, and it is frustrating when you pretend to be. It shows that you are not trusting and it makes it hard for others to trust you, to be vulnerable with you.
Admitting your vulnerabilities can be very liberating. Admit that you don’t know something, or that you made a mistake, or simply apologising. You are being honest with yourself. Be vulnerable. You are… you. You show others that you are vulnerable and you create a safe environment where they can, too, drop their barriers and open up.
Some people might make fun of you when you let yourself be vulnerable. Take heart that they do so out of fear of their own vulnerability. More often than not, you’ll find the people around opening up as well.
“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.”Madeleine L’Engle
By being vulnerable, you are honest with yourself. Authenticity lets you better connect with who you are so you can identify where you need to improve. No one is perfect but not everyone is improving either. Those who are constantly becoming better will take steps closer towards perfection.
The more you are in touch with your vulnerability, the more you increase your resilience. Resilience lets you face and accept change. That’s a critical skill since change is the only constant in life.