Activity 18 – 30 days of vulnerability

We’re rapidly approaching the end of My Year of TED, with only four more activities to go. With that in mind, I decided that it was time to kick it up a notch and take on the big one. You all had to know that a dedicated vulnerability activity was on its way, time for me to really embrace the concept.

The talks
This activity is based on three talks, the first two being Brené Brown’s amazing talks on shame, vulnerability and courage – The power of vulnerability and Listening to shame. Brené’s talks inspired me so much I bought her book The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are to try to really get into it a little better and prepare me for the project as a whole. The third talk is Eve Ensler: happiness in body and soul which is a very inspirational talk about owning your truth and giving away what you want the most.

The challenge
I’ve mentioned a number of times that this entire project is an exercise in vulnerability. That means that I should probably have saved this to be the final activity of my Year of TED, but I think that it aligns so well with 30 days of being wrong that it is better placed now.

I’ve tried very hard to be painfully honest in this blog, and more open and vulnerable in the interactions with people in my life. There have been times where this has really become to much for me, and I have felt my natural impulse to withdraw and protect myself kick in. Sometimes I have pushed through this, other times I have let that impulse take over to censor posts or isolate me from others for short periods.

That means that part of the challenge for me in this activity is to focus on, in  Brené’s words, “excruciating vulnerability”. This not only means being courageous and embracing connectivity, but also being more compassionate to myself to others. This last thing is something I have improved upon, but mainly towards other people, I’m still way too judgemental of myself.

The second part of the challenge is about telling and owning my truth. I feel that I have done a lot of that in this blog, there are things I have said here that I have never really told anyone outside of a very select couple of people. Added to this, through some of these activities I have been more honest with the other people around me about things I could never share in this space. But there is more that I can do in this aspect of my life, and part of that is understanding what my truth really is.

There is another part to Eve’s talk which is about giving away what you really want as a way of healing yourself. I’ve thought quite a lot about what this would be and I have some ideas about it, but I’m not entirely sure how this might play out.

The activity
There are so many facets to this activity, so many ways that I can embrace vulnerability in the next 30 days. The main things that I think I need to focus on are:

  • continuing to push my courage by being more authentic, rather than being what people want or expect me to be
  • actively practising self-compassion and really trying to give that perfectionist trait a kick
  • trying to reconnect with a couple of people from my past who I have fallen out of touch with for a long time now, and in the process sharing things that they probably never knew
  • I also want to try to really understand what my truth is, so that I can ensure that I am telling and owning it.
The last part of this is to try to work out what I would want most in the world and whether there is some way of giving that away. I doubt that I will resolve that in the 30 days, but you never know.
A final note, I believe that I am prepared for this activity, given everything I have done in the project so far. But that does not mean that I am under any misconceptions about how difficult it will be.
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