Just like all of you, my life doesn’t happen in a vacuum and often what you see printed in this column are events, feelings and reactions to the previous two weeks. During the last several years many of you have celebrated, mourned and lived with me.
Someone recently pointed out that I tend to share a lot of myself and my family. I didn’t think it was a criticism, but then my husband remarked that sometimes he reads my column just to see what I’m thinking.
I’m much better at writing than communicating directly with the person or even speaking to a group.
I realized this last week when was in a train-the-trainer event and receiving feedback. I also realized it when I was listening to a book in my commute to Lincoln for three days for the training.
It makes sense to me that God lays the subject of my writing on my heart, but it also makes sense that while I’m living, I’m writing about what is happening through my lens. I react to what I see and sometimes I’m putting myself and my family in a vulnerable situation.
I’m listening to Brene’ Brown’s book “The Power of Vulnerability."
As I was growing up, I think I was lead to believe that being vulnerable is being weak and who wants to be weak? No one, right? But this book has made a profound difference in my world.
Being vulnerable is hard stuff. It’s about being authentic and courageous. It’s about building connections and finding your people.
“But it’s also about an attitude of scarcity,” says Brown. “We are shamed into believing that we are not enough. Not smart enough, not thin enough, not whatever – you fill in the blanks.”
Brown explains “we as a culture are always striving to be enough. It’s a status symbol to be exhausted because you’re so busy.”
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Throughout the book there are several suggestions about changing that narrative, being vulnerable and being okay with the idea. One of the suggestions involved setting clear boundaries with family, friends and work.
This is not a new concept for me, but going through hard stuff allows you to find your voice sometimes. This was also included in my Faith Partners training last week.
Faith Partners is a model used in churches throughout the country that helps prepare team members to deal with the continuum of needs in regards to addictions of all kinds. From prevention to recovery, team members are taught how to advocate and walk beside those that are hurting and their families.
It’s a natural fit with what I already do in the coalition, but it’s a team approach.
That’s not so natural to me. My husband and family will tell you that I’ve tried to be everything to everyone for so long that I don’t know if I can do it any other way. They’re right.
People who are stressed will often overachiever or underachieve according to research from Brene’ Brown. I’ve always taken on the overachiever role.
How about you? Do you recognize it when you are about to go off the rails when you’re dealing with hard stuff? Do you have a team of people that support you?
About a year ago I found my people at church. Before that I had struggled with attending church. It was just tough after my dad died.
I also have four people that are my prayer shield. They are my support team and pray with me through the hard stuff.
I’ve learned that it’s okay to be vulnerable and I’m realizing that I’m enough.