They say that after the storm, comes the beauty of the rainbow. The storm representing the big black hole you were in and the rainbow representing the overflow of joy and happiness that will follow. I say, that after the storm, comes the real work. The realization and the acceptance that we may not be able to control everything but, there are many things that we can. You see, if we can do this, there is relief in unstitching the seams of feeling not good enough, embarrassed, fearful, and a bunch of other “what if” thoughts. However, this isn’t as easy as it seems.
Vulnerability is like the rainbow you have to slide down to reach your pot of gold. It’s a process. It takes time to get there and the journey is filled with different layers of colors, each representing an emotion. Red can be love or frustration. Purple can be strength or disappointment. Blue can be confidence or sadness. It’s whatever emotion you assign it to, because you are in control here.
How many times have you gone into a relationship with your guard all the way up, or held yourself back from being in one? Or more so, seamed another layer of skin that you stitched over your already existing one. I mean, who wants to be seen as anything other than “thick skinned”, right? God forbid someone sees that you are truly not okay. Most people think that strength is portraying the conditioned “ideal” version of that to the world but, that’s not true. When you choose to be vulnerable, you are choosing to expose the REAL you. You are choosing to spew out all of those colors and emotions fully knowing that you are letting down your “perfect” exterior.
In a world filled with inauthenticity because of the fear of being vulnerable (amongst many other things), what shows more strength and beauty than being your authentic self? Ever wonder why people are more fascinated and intrigued by the abstract pieces of art in a gallery, more so than the perfectly carved ones? Because there is beauty in the seemingly imperfectness. It is different, and different is exciting. It’s fresh.
Quite frankly, it’s exhausting putting on a perfect facade all of the time. When you do so, you are only harboring those feelings you want to release, inside of you. This will literally drain you. You’re not healing them. They will continue to stay stuck inside of you and they will continue to grow. What do we get from putting up this guard? It protects us. It’s something we humans have done since the beginning of our evolution. It has always been “survival of the fittest”. Sure, times have changed. Our environment, our clothing, our technological advances but, has our way of thinking really changed? We fear showing any type of emotion that may be used to “attack” us in a sense. In reality, all you are doing, is attacking yourself.
You ever notice how you feel this ball of energy in different parts of your body when you feel an unwanted emotion? It could be in the pit of your stomach, in your head, or right there in your heart. Or when you crave something, such as intimacy, or when we want to just express how we feel, we tend to shy away from it. We shove it deeper down inside of us, in fear of what others may think. Or the fear of being rejected and coming off as weak. Or just the fear of feeling it. Your body is literally responding to you, telling you that you need to express these emotions.
So how is being vulnerable a work of art? Because each time you release another color, onto the canvas of your life, you are actually leading towards the opposite of that unwanted emotion. When you show your sadness, you are actually leading to confidence. When you show your frustration, you are actually leading to love. When you show your disappointment, you are actually leading to strength. How? Because as you slide down each color, you are getting closer and closer to being able to truly feel what it is you truly want, without feeling shackled. You are getting closer and closer to expressing yourself and therefore staying in the moment, rather than seeking to mask it. Yes, you may get hurt, or rejected or just misunderstood. That is why this is a process. It’s a process of realization and acceptance.
What’s the pot of gold then? Freedom.