Brené Brown’s TEDx Talk on The Power of Vulnerability explains the difference between people who have a sense of love and belonging and those who don’t: Those who have it believe that they are worthy of it. It’s that simple. One thing that keeps us out of connection with loved ones is our fear that we aren’t worthy of that connection.
Brown conducted a great deal of research about people who live “wholeheartedly” and studied what they have in common. She found they have:
- The courage to be imperfect.
- The compassion to be kind to themselves and to others.
- Connection as a result of authenticity—in other words, they were true to themselves.
- They fully embraced vulnerability, and they believed that which made them vulnerable also made them beautiful.
Of course, many of us know what a challenge it is to be vulnerable. There are no guarantees that when we put ourselves “out there”, we will be loved in return. Brown herself struggled tremendously in her effort to be vulnerable, preferring to be in control at all times.
She also suggests we often numb ourselves from life—with credit cards, medication, drugs or alcohol. But then we numb the good AND bad parts of our lives. “We numb joy, gratitude and happiness. We try to perfect ourselves, our lives and our children,” she says. “Instead, we need to affirm ourselves and others as imperfect but worthy of love and belonging.”
To be vulnerable, we have to love with our whole hearts, knowing there is no guarantee, but believing that we are enough, Brown says. “Practice gratitude, and lean into joy.”
I agree with Brown that showing our deepest, truest selves can be difficult, even downright scary at times. We wonder if we open ourselves up with such honesty and vulnerability if we will be seen as worthy of love. It’s a leap of faith that, according to Brown’s research, is essential to make. Check out Brown’s full talk. It’s entertaining and well worth your time.
Do you believe you are worthy of love and belonging? Do you communicate that kind of loving message to your spouse, especially when he or she opens up to you? Do you struggle with vulnerability, or do you embrace the concept?
Links to Enjoy:
10 Truths about Happy Marriages—Read these helpful tips!
50 Ways to Show Your Husband You Love Him by Busy Bliss blog—You don’t have to do all of them, but pick one or two today as a way to communicate your love.
Lori Lowe is a marriage blogger at MarriageGems.com. Her book First Kiss to Lasting Bliss: Hope & Inspiration for Your Marriage is now available on Amazon.com and in all e-book formats at www.LoriDLowe.com. Lori and her husband of 16 years live in Indianapolis with their two children.
Photo by graur razvan ionut courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net.