“What we know matters, but who we are matters more” – Brene Brown.
I celebrate the usual highs and lows that is the variety of my life. I would go from being a Clown Doctor one day, to Keynote Speaker the next, to Class Parent Supervisor organising the ‘Greek Olympics’ at my son’s school, I have worn many hats and switched hats’ left right and centre!
Amidst these roles there has been the usual and consistent roles of Wife, Mother, Daughter, Sister, Counsellor, Chef, Taxi Driver, Housekeeper, Rat Wrangler – (ugh, don’t ask!) When I first heard about the book called ‘Daring Greatly’ by Brene Brown, (her Ted talk is quite famous) my ears pricked up and I instantly downloaded it began reading (she is a woman after my own heart). She writes that
“We’re hardwired for connection – it’s what gives purpose and meaning to our lives. The absence of love, belonging, and connection always leads to suffering” (and this was just in the intro!) She went on to say that “Vulnerability is the core, the heart, the centre, of meaningful human experiences”.
When I first joined Clown Doctors I was told by the Founder and Creative Director Jean Paul Bell that my ‘vulnerability would be my strength’. I don’t think I quite knew what he meant at the time; after all I was trying to appear confident in my audition process, not vulnerable! It’s funny how we associate weakness with vulnerability. So often I have felt that to show my feelings was unacceptable, that it put me at risk of being judged somehow as ‘less then’ - yet I have found it takes great courage to be vulnerable.
I often feel vulnerable every time I walk out the door! Whether I was being Dr Haveachat, or speaking or being a class supervisor, I would feel vulnerable. What I found however as I spoke to a fabulous group of people earlier this year at a Conference, is that it is my vulnerability that others connect to, it’s my vulnerability and courage to risk being ‘real out there’ that others are inspired by. This left me feeling very humbled, and very grateful of the reminder that my journey through life has value, in fact I have value. This has been a big deal to admit, and once again I feel vulnerable even as I admit this (especially in a newsletter to several hundred people!) but I would like to encourage you to ‘Dare Greatly’, to allow your vulnerability to be the catalyst for courage, compassion, and connection.
Love to hear your thoughts,