Is vulnerability a weakness or a myth?

When you think of the word vulnerability, what words come to mind?

  • Powerless?
  • Sensitive?
  • Tender?
  • Thin-skinned?
  • Soft?
  • Delicate?
  • Instability?
  • Easily hurt?

I’m a huge fan of Brené Brown and her book The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are.

Ms. Brown defines vulnerability as uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure. The willingness to step into a situation without 100% certainty that things will pan out the way you hoped in the end.  The willingness to let others see you in your most uncovered state.

Vulnerability is our most accurate measure of courage.  ~ Brené Brown

My most vulnerable moment in recent past happened three years ago next month. The evening when I danced in public to ♫ Moves Like Jagger ♪♫ in front of several hundred strangers at a Man Auction to raise money for charity. I was scared to death. As it turns out, being vulnerable was a life changing moment.

Jim Collins wrote in his book Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…And Other’s Don’t, that the most successful leaders are those who are vulnerable and humble. Leaders who are willing to say they don’t have all the answers. Leaders who don’t look for the accolades, instead, let their team bask in the spotlight  and take in the applause on center stage

Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less. ~ Rick Warren

What I found interesting in this video is when Ms. Brown shared that vulnerability is the first thing we want to see in others but it’s the last thing we want to show of ourselves. True that.

Think of a time when you were with a leader who was truly vulnerable. They showed their emotions. They let their hair hang down. There was no agenda. No pretense. In that moment, what were you thinking? For me I wished I could be more like them.

In the comments below, if you’re willing to be vulnerable, tell us your most vulnerable moment?

Kudos to Matt MacGillivray for the photo.

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