It does take courage to be the one who exposes themselves to others

It’s always fear in opening up to one another that holds us back and stops us from getting the support, help, love, encouragement and understanding we need in life. Dawn Barclay

Let’s face it, if we open ourselves up and feel more vulnerable in the act of trying, why would we even go there? I’m not going to say ‘just reach out’, ‘ask for help’, or ‘let people in’, because it is hard. I know that. Everyone’s content is different, complex and unique. And, sometimes, well, sometimes the shame we feel about our own story is such a heavy weight, we think we have to hold it alone because we feel 'it's all our fault'.

We’re afraid that by standing emotionally naked before others dressed in our struggles and fears they will judge us, misunderstand us, or push us away. That if we expose our words and feelings we will be shown up as the ones who aren’t coping, or aren’t enough, never mind good enough.

We don’t want to be vulnerable.

We don’t want others to see how much we are hurting. We don’t want to be the ones who are less than (what?), we don’t others to see that we haven't got it all figured out and are the ones who lose control at times.

We’re so scared that if we remove the mask, release the guard and let the brave face fall others will notice that we haven’t got our life neatly packaged up, that we’ve failed or falling. Heck, we don’t want to be the one who risks standing alone and appears to have lost our way and may not make it.

It does take courage to be the one who stands, shares and exposes themselves to others. It’s risky, make no doubt.

It may not be well received, or our words may be used against us or thrown back down at our feet at a later date when the meaning of what we said today has changed, may have expired or no longer holds true for us.

Yes, we may expose our private world to another and – through no blame – we assume they have understood our workings when they have merely run it through their own experience and filtered into a box called ‘What I think you mean’.

With all that above, why would we share? Why would we risk it? Even if we know and understand that we all carry our own struggles and suffering – that we aren’t alone - why allow others in our world if we run the risk of leaving ourselves wide open?

You can choose to run the risk, or not. Fear will always hold you hostage to the belief that nobody else is suffering the way you are. Fear won’t let you hear the words, ‘You’re not alone’, no, it would prefer you didn’t notice them. Fear will always ask you to pop on your bravery mask and your suit of armour and 'deal with it', it will keep hidden from you the others wearing theirs. You get to choose, but fear doesn’t always have your best interests in mind.


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