Vulnerability – The V Word
My least favorite emotion for many years would have been the V word = vulnerability. Just ick. Vulnerability loves to hang out with helplessness. The debilitating duo. Double ick.
When I misunderstood how life works, I believed circumstances created these emotions. Past, present, and future circumstances. With this innocent assumption, of course, I habitually tried to manipulate my environment, eliminate the culprits that were causing my misery. Faulty logic, no matter how well meaning, can’t create lasting results.
In an attempt to create more confidence, what I saw as the opposite of vulnerability, I attempted to generate it with positive thoughts and reframing.
I am strong! I can accomplish my goals!
It felt a lot better, but it required vigilance. With this method, vulnerability kept its bad rap. I was just trying to avoid it, keep it in the “feeling’s prison.”
When I learned that we are always feeling our thinking in the moment, not our circumstances, I started being curious about vulnerability. I had the same thoughts about it over and over, but it was still thought in the moment. This really showed me it had nothing to do with my history or flaws, but my habits. We have thought habits just like any other habits. I have the frustrating habit of misplacing my keys and the habit of thinking I couldn’t feel vulnerability. Both aggravating, but easily remedied when I find my keys or remember how I only feel thought in the moment.
A lot of our thoughts are created then programmed in at a young age. Our brains take in information, give it meaning, then innocently mistake it for who we are and how life is. It is like we are wearing “our personal thought” glasses, but don’t realize we have them on. It’s like driving around with dirty windows, not realizing what a beautiful day it is.
All feelings move. Emotion=energy and motion. When we resist emotion, we innocently give it more energy. Since the brain is wired for survival, not joy and happiness, anything that is getting resistance energy is going to alert the troops to a possible vulnerability attack.
And we are so much more than the thought-factory of our brains. We are innately well and wired for wisdom. We have the ability to recognize and see past our brain’s habitual output. Most children know this. They are happy, sad, mad, and vulnerable all within an hour and never resist any of it.
Getting curious about your least favored emotions is a huge first step to seeing something new. I would love to talk to you further about this.