Updated: Jul 15, 2020
Have you ever stepped into a pool of cold water?
The journey and deep work in each of us is a never ending one. What I’ve learned about the journey is next step seems to always be at the edge of our comfort zone. That’s where growth happens after all, right? Have you ever stepped into a pool of cold water? When you put your feet in, you take in the status of the water temperature and begin to mentally prepare yourself for what you’re in for. As the water level hits your knees, it’s not so bad. But when it hits your stomach...brrrr! That skin is sensitive and the shock can nearly take your breath away. As you step deeper and deeper, the dry areas that have been unexposed to the water are immersed in the cold temperatures and it’s uncomfortable!
The next level I’m stepping into currently is authenticity, and with this has come vulnerability-new levels and uncomfortable layers of it! As I’ve taken steps out of my comfort zone in the past, I’ve noticed that I have a choice in how I go through the process: I can can resist it, hem haw about how scary it is, try to talk myself out of it, dip a toe in and make a big deal about how cold it is, or I can just jump in, cannonball style! For me, in this season, I’m choosing to cannonball.
Why is vulnerability so scary?
It’s currently my birthday month and I’ve decided to do 31 things that scare me (including starting this blog!) in the way of vulnerability. Why is vulnerability so scary? Honestly…it feels like I’m getting naked. I’m showing my true, authentic self, and there’s no place to hide. I’m stripping down to my birthday suit and letting others see it all! And just like jumping in the cold water cannonball style, the initial feeling is shocking. It takes my breath away. But once I’ve jumped in…it’s not so bad. After all, it is what it is. It’s truth. The raw truth. I am who I am and what you see is what you get. You get me, the real me. Me in all my glory.
And so the journey begins
When you’re standing there naked giving all of you, the real you, for all to see and someone rejects you, judges you, essentially pokes you with a stick, or worse, cuts you with a knife, it’s easy to think “Wow! Maybe I should put some clothes on, or better yet, let’s put an armor on.” And let’s be honest, the more layers you put on, the less it hurts. And so the journey begins. The journey of boundaries. The journey of what clothes to wear, when, and with who.
You are a gift and you choose who's worthy of that gift
Each of us gets to decide how much of ourselves we give and who we give ourselves to. Some people get to see us naked. They understand the sacredness of the gift and are worthy of it. Some people get to see us in our bathing suits. Others get to see our summer clothes, fall clothes, and still others get us in our winter parka. The important note is that WE choose, and layers of clothes can come on and off from time to time, season to season.
Who's clothes are you wearing?
Another question to consider is what clothes are you choosing to wear? Are you wearing something you picked out because YOU like it or are you wearing something because you know OTHERS will like it? In other words, are you acting, saying, and doing things in a way to be liked or because it’s an expression of you?
Although we are talking about other people, someone else to consider letting in on your gift is yourself. Are you allowing yourself in on your deepest self? Are you treating it as sacred and being compassionate or are you poking it with sticks?