We’ll go leaps and bounds to avoid vulnerability out of fear of facing undesirable situations enveloped with undesirable emotions.
// Vulnerability is the core of all emotions.
Out of fear of being judged, hurt or failing, we’ll make it our enemy. Because somewhere at some point in our lives, we were judged, hurt or faced failure. Heartbreaks, rejection, criticisms: they open the door to our fragile nature, making us more aware of ourselves in a way we’d never otherwise choose to open the door to. In turn, we consciously avoid the possibility of being vulnerable again by avoiding situations that could cause us the same pain, sense of rejection or embarrassment.
To be vulnerable is directly placing ourselves in a position that could potentially lead us to unwanted emotion and uncomfortable experiences. But vulnerability doesn’t have to be a negative like this. To be vulnerable is also directly placing ourselves in a position that could lead us to possibilities and opportunities — of chance, growth and betterment. Fear is temporary, formed by a negative association our minds have with the event or activity that once caused us pain. Fear stems from the inability to control the outcome of an undesirable situation to suit what we desire. To be vulnerable means we are — intentionally — exposing ourselves to that fear. In doing so, in leveraging our vulnerability, we’re taking ownership of that fear, allowing us to mold our reaction to the outcome, not the outcome itself, so it fits our needs.
It’s not a weakness, a passing reluctancy or something any of us should live without. To consider vulnerability a weakness is to consider feeling one’s emotions as so. It’s not a choice — it’ll remain to be the pure undertone of our natural being. The choice is how we respond when the shaky parts of vulnerability face us: risk, emotional exposure and doubt. If we choose to keep out what may cause us pain, we also prevent ourselves from feeling any sliver of happiness and good that will stem, that we’re worthy of. And we are worthy.
To shy away from vulnerability is to hide the authentic essence of our nature. The act of invulnerability is the vain attempt to become something we’re not, something we fabricate ourselves to be out of fear of revealing who we really are. It closes off our understanding of the inevitable lows and wonderful highs of others, while closing off our own lows and highs from others. In eliminating our vulnerability, we place a handicap on the guidance oftentimes needed at the wavering pivots of our existence. And we need guidance sometimes. Vulnerability helps us better connect with ourselves and those who we feel comfortable connecting with.
Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. To feel is to be vulnerable. To be vulnerable is to be fully immersed in our feelings. To share openly without judgement or fear. To feel comfortable feeling uncomfortable. To believe in the benefit of risk. To be the rawest, most open version of ourselves, completely and truthfully.