Choosing the Courageous Path

It’s natural to move away from vulnerability. 

We often equate being vulnerable with being weak.

No one wants to feel or be perceived as weak.

The belief is being weak or perceived as weak means we are more likely to be hurt.

We have a natural instinct to do everything in our power to maintain a sense of safety, within ourselves and externally with things and people around us.

~We avoid big conversations. “I don’t want to rock the boat or upset someone.”

~We don’t follow our desires. “What if I fail?”

~We don’t speak up. “What if I’m rejected, judged, or dismissed?”

~We don’t share, or sometimes even acknowledge within ourselves, our dreams. “What if I’m not worthy of my dream?”

~We move through the world wearing masks (one of many, varying depending on circumstances). “What if she/he sees who I really am; what I really feel; what I really think; discovers what I’ve experienced?”

Avoiding all these experiences will help us feel safer. It may calm the nervous energy present when thinking about doing any of these things. It may even make us feel stronger or more empowered for escaping any of these outcomes or feeling vulnerable.

BUT…

Continuing to do things you think keeps you safe also keeps you from experiencing the full expression of who you are. Which means you hide (even if subconsciously) parts of yourself… your thoughts, feelings, desires, struggle.

When you hide part of who you are, when fear keeps you from your full expression, you reinforce the beliefs and fears which lead to shame.

Allowing ourselves to be vulnerable, while scary as hell, is the only path to releasing shame.

Choosing to be vulnerable… choosing to share, speak up, show up without the mask, is the embodiment of COURAGE.

Courage is on the opposite end of the spectrum of weakness. 

Walking through vulnerability is the path to living the healthy, happy, and whole life you deserve. <3

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2 comments on “Choosing the Courageous Path”

  1. Peggy,

    Thank you for this message of encouragement! I struggle, a lot, with worrying about being inappropriate! I am willing to be vulnerable with the people in my community, who I will be engaging with on a regular basis, e.g. church community, doctors, friends, etc. I want them to know “me” and attempt to share my thoughts and feelings. (I try to be sensitive, read their body language, be empathetic.) However, it becomes complicated because I am extremely, sensitive and emotional, and have been for quite awhile. I cry unpredictably which causes people to feel uncomfortable. I try to have a sense of humor about it! Then, embarrassment takes over and I find myself writing notes (to doctors especially) and attempt to explain, Then, I want, so badly, to get feed back from them to know that I didn’t hurt them or cause them discomfort. This is a constant struggle! (tears are coming as I write.) I feel that if I don’t keep trying the alternative is to just hide in my house...

    1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. A fear of doing something wrong or hurting someone is something a lot of survivors struggle with. Though very, very rarely something that actually happens. Keep being yourself. Honor how you feel and what you need. The tears are there for a reason and it's important to allow yourself to be held (literally or figuratively) when it happens. <3

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