If a puppy were to come up to you, with it’s tail wagging, would you bend down and stroke it? If it then rolled over and showed you it’s belly would you gently tickle it?
If you are a dog lover chances are, not only would you tickle its belly you would talk to it and really connect with this cute, adorable and vulnerable puppy.
When a puppy presents its belly to you it is submitting to you, it is being very vulnerable in your presence and as such you feel a deep connection towards the puppy. Why then as adults do we so often see vulnerability as some kind of weakness and not as a strength? Why do we present a guarded version of ourselves when we meet new people?
Well, it could be pride, it could also be fear. If we are slow to trust others this too will prevent us being vulnerable. All traits which can undermine a friendship let alone a relationship. A key component to a deep connection with someone is showing your vulnerability, and here’s why.
It takes courage to be vulnerable, it says you are in touch with your self and your feelings and are not afraid to show them. Self love and vulnerability grow together, each compliments the other.
It’s difficult to dislike a puppy that’s just rolled over on its back, likewise it’s difficult not to like someone who is not only comfortable in their own skin but open to being honest in their struggles. When you ‘open up’ you subconsciously give your listener to signals and the space to do the same. The conversation takes on a new depth, and as such a closer more meaningful connection can begin.
In the Bible the apostle James suggests we “Confess our faults to one another” – James 5v16.
Why? Why would James even suggest this? Because when we ‘let down our guard’ we become open, willing and vulnerable enough to allow change within us to take place. We are in a way saying, “Look, I’m aware I need to change and I’m willing to try, please be gentle, and don’t judge me, instead help me to love and accept myself”.
Now, whether we do this to a trusted friend, a counsellor or a confession coach makes little difference. It’s the act of becoming vulnerable that will, in time increase your self awareness and your self love. Once you have a healthy respect of you, your strengths and your weaknesses, you will also be quicker to forgive others. Your vulnerability will have given birth to a stronger more compassionate you.
So go on, give it a try… Take your relationships with yourself and others to deeper levels of open honesty.
Let go of the old you, and welcome in the new.
Wayne, The Confession Coach