Brene Brown expertly addresses her lifetime of work researching shame, vulnerability, courage, connection, and empathy in her audio book, The Power of Vulnerability. Her words effortlessly transition between personal reflection and case studies. She revealed that our connection to others relies on one’s ability to become his or her authentic self.
As a counseling intern, I treasure this audiobook. As a human, I treasure her honesty and unguarded approach. In my opinion, she answers some of the more existential questions to our existence. Specifically, Dr. Brown says, “…connection is why we’re here. It’s what gives us purpose and meaning. This is what it is all about.”
Vulnerability is not a weakness.
As the title of the audiobook suggests, it is only when we allow ourselves to become vulnerable, that we truly find joy, happiness, and creativity. Vulnerable? Only weak people are vulnerable, right? In the immortal words of Lee Corso, “not so fast, my friend.” I wholeheartedly agree with Dr. Brown on this concept. We all struggle to be perfect; to do things just right; to say the right thing. We more often than not fail to take chances and grow. We live in fear of making mistakes. Sometimes, we even think, “If this person really knew me, they wouldn’t like me.” Unfortunately, this line of thinking is exactly what keeps us from connecting with others.
Vulnerability begins with self acceptance.
Of course, connecting is easier said than done. However, the real message in her book is that it takes infinitely more courage to be vulnerable than to keep a stiff upper lip and pretend to be someone other than ourselves. With time, the more we become and accept who we really are, the more peace, joy, and happiness we will find. Thus, the first step in our own personal change is knowing and accepting ourselves as we are.
Finally, it is important to know that this process of learning who we are is not a new concept.
“The hardest things for a human being to do is to know themselves and to change themselves.” –Alfred Adler
In summary, you are worthy of being accepted – just as you are.
If you have any questions about Amy Wine Counseling Center and our therapeutic services feel free to call us at 832-421-8714 or contact us here.