Wednesday, July 7

The Art of Vulnerability: Do It Afraid

I’m not gonna lie, I watch a lot of reality TV, typically the creative competitions. HGTV Design Star, American Idol, Work of Art, So You Think You Can Dance, Project Runway and the list goes on. I watch these shows because they glorify creativity and talent, what’s not to love about that?

Week after week, these shows require contestants to perform their talent followed by an evaluation from industry professionals, you know the drill. Then miraculously after hours and hours of nonsense and drama I can still find some life-changing meaning to it all. Lately I have noticed many of the most talented contestants are criticized for not being vulnerable enough. So even if you’re the best artist/singer/dancer/designer it doesn’t even matter if you aren’t exposing some inner deep part of yourself.

Being vulnerable is hard for everyone. We all live in a society that leaves many of us feeling inadequate at the end of the day. The beautiful and the rich are constantly in front of our faces waving their flag of success. We live in fear … of everything. So for a person to completely bare their soul and influence their work based on who they are is an amazing accomplishment. It really hit me when I heard this similar critique from different judges on multiple shows. Is vulnerability the secret weapon of success?

As soon as things get uncomfortable or scary our first reaction is to run away. Could we be running away from what we’re supposed to be running towards? Overcoming fear takes courage and all courage means is to do it afraid. I heard that for the first time a year ago and that’s when I started doing everything afraid. It changed my life. For the first time ever I was working towards goals and my fears stopped controlling my decisions. I felt it, disregarded it and moved on. It took practice and became a learned habit. I still get butterflies when I’m about to sing in front of a group or show my artwork, but doing it afraid is better than not doing it at all. Be confident, be vulnerable and you'll impact many more people that way.

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