I imagine that if a group of people who know me were asked to describe me that one of the things that most of them would say is that: I am a private person. True. Yet, paradoxically I write a blog and it’s out there in cyberspace for anyone to read. Also true. But when I write a post I try not to mention anything I wouldn’t be happy to chat about with, say, a random stranger on a train.

So, why then, in the name of all the pigeons in the sky, would I now admit on the blog that lately I have been feeling vulnerable. The answer is: partly because it’s merely a mention not an exploration, and partly because I believe that feeling vulnerable is part of ‘la condition humaine’ and therefore everyone can identify, but mostly because I recently came across this TED video (TED is a platform for ideas worth spreading) where Brené Brown (research professor, author, and public speaker) talks about the power of vulnerability.

Brené Brown’s talk on the power of vulnerability has been around since 2010, so you may have seen it already: with close to fourteen million views it’s one of TED’s most watched videos. I think it’s excellent and I have watched it three times, each time I took something else away, the phrase that’s ringing in my ears from my most recent viewing is: you cannot selectively numb emotion.

I hope that from now on I can regard feelings of vulnerability in a positive light.

Note: you can find more TED talks here.


Filed under Musings

18 responses to “Vulnerability

  1. I had to watch the video, it really is pretty amazing. I will have to watch it again to really get more out of it. It’s really a contradiction right, being very private but having a blog that is out there for all. You do manage to make it personal without divulging to much, you do it well.

    • Thank you for what you say about making the blog personal without divulging too much – it’s a puzzle which I am still trying to figure out.
      I was very taken by the video and her delivery style makes it easy to listen to.

      I hope you finger is getting better. 😉

  2. I can complete relate to you as I’m a very private person as well! One of the most challenging things is finding the right balance between personal and private when blogging. I’m always trying to find new ways to open up and be vulnerable with my readers! I love TED talks and will definitely have to check this one out. Thank you for sharing!

    • I agree wholeheartedly that it is a huge challenge to find the balance between the personal and the private when blogging especially when you are a private person. I also think like you that opening up to readers from time to time, at whatever level one feels comfortable with, is a good idea, if not always easy to do. 😉

  3. Surreycousin

    I agree that understanding your own vulnerability can be very positive. And remember that there is nobody as vulnerable as the man with the delusion that he is invincible.

  4. I’ve never taken time to watch these long videos, until now. Great choice! I’m hooked.

  5. Brene Brown’s work is powerful. Becoming vulnerable opens us to becoming courageous, compassionate and connecting from the heart. Thank you for revealing your vulnerability! x

  6. I have seen Brown’s video and was also impressed. It’s odd, isn’t it, that private people (and I include myself) enjoy blogging. I guess it’s a kind of selective privacy. 🙂

    • I thought the video was very impressive – aside from the message I love the way she crafted her speech and delivered it with panache.

      Yes, it is odd that that private people are drawn to such a public forum. Selective privacy – I agree … Also I wonder if there is a certain sense that talking into the ether sometimes feels like you are not taking (typing!) to anyone at all. 😉

  7. I don’t think that being private and having a blog is a contradiction. Quite the opposite. A blog is your creature and you have total control over it. If you feel like sharing something, you write a post about it explaining your point of view on your own terms. If you don’t feel like it, you just stay quite.
    I think every human being is vulnerable in one way or another and there is nothing wrong about admitting it.
    Wishing you a very relaxing weekend, my dear B.

    • Dear Francesca,

      I am sorry for the delayed reply to your comment.

      I agree with you that every human being is vulnerable, it is I think part of what makes us able to identify and sympathise with others sorrows. You are right there is nothing wrong about admitting it just felt a little strange saying it on the blog! But hey that’s me!

      Hope you have a good week. Bx


  8. Welcome, indeed, to ‘la condition humaine’, my friend. The only people I know who are perpetually unable to reveal any vulnerability are those who need to most. Life is strange that way. What rather surprises me is how oddly *freeing* it is to admit to my fears and flaws; every time, I find there is a sympathetic ear (or ten) among friends I’d never previously suspected capable of experiencing similar things. The fact that they’re able to appear so much stronger and braver and all of that means they can teach me things, each of them, about how to become a little stronger and braver and all of that myself. It’s undoubtedly a lifelong process, but I can safely say I’m worlds away from where I once was, and on a road to ever-happier comfort. Which sometimes still means I find my comfort in hiding and retreating, but oftener than before can also mean finding my safety in numbers. Who knew. Either way, you are a person I delight in having become acquainted with in the last year or two, and I assure you that you are in admiring and friendly company here when you wish it.
    Best to you!

  9. I am pleased to hear that you are now on the road to ever-happier comfort, sometimes these journeys are very hard and I hope yours was not too difficult. I too, as an introvert, find comfort in retreating but I try hard to balance that with an awareness that I also need connections with my friends. Thank you for the nice things you say they are much appreciated.

    All the best to you too Kathryn


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