Vulnerability makes you beautiful. Part 3 - Revealing one fear at a time
Just as one thinks I have now conquered my vulnerabilities and am out there naked yet shining, I realise there is more fear lurking in the background and inhibiting me. It’s a tough journey! In this blog I am sharing my recent trysts with vulnerability and the 4 steps that I am taking to remain true and vulnerable.
With the lockdown and COVID-19, I have had the perfect reason, excuse and NEED to go inward again. The challenges around me have been scary, from business, personal to natural disasters of experiencing my very first tornado, I must admit, it sent me into my shell... Especially because ALL these challenges are well out of my control. They have shown me the mirror, once again, of how human I am and the best I can actually do is LET GO!
We have all heard the term ‘let go’… But what does that really mean? How do you let go of a fear that grips you so completely. My fear that we may use up our savings this year due to COVID, the fear that I may not be able to travel and see my parents at the end of the year, the fear that my child is loosing a year, my fear that women are being abused during the lock down and I can't offer them any meaningful support, the fear that my son is asthmatic in a COVID era, the fear that as I reach out to people there will be judgment or worse apathy towards my reach, the fear that we will never overcome prejudices against people… the list is long. But the GOOD news is I haven’t lost my will to journey through and I continue to learn the art of LETTING GO... on fear at a time!
I have been working with this awesome group of women to be authentic and getting their respective niche’s to be courageous; courageous and power through this time and stay true to themselves. It is this courage that I have been around that has actually pulled me through… And to them I share my deepest gratitude. Gratitude for helping me stay on course, gratitude for helping me get closer to my purpose, and gratitude to keeping me grounded and present to the fact the WE all are in this together.
So what have we done as a group and individually to support each other and ourselves in letting go?
The Four Steps are:
1. Slow down.
Given the ever-changing landscape of life currently, the best plan I am learning is to plan for the NOW. I am doing that by being present and using my values to guide my decision making. I have identified what my limiting beliefs are and found a partner who can call me out when I am falling prey to my limiting beliefs.*
Besides the actual support from my cohort on this journey, mindfulness meditation and chanting has been an amazing practice to help me stay present and manage my limbic brain. Funny thing is, in the moment of being present, there is no need to let go of anything. The need to let go the fear we normally perceive, is one of a future state... and there is no future in the present! ?
2. Carving out my mission
It’s amazing what a sense of purpose can do for ones emotional, mental and physical health! Over the last 7 weeks I have been chipping away at my purpose and my mission. It was finalized 10 days ago, and I was scared to put it out. I had agreed with my coach to put it out to my network on LinkedIn but I didn’t. I was paralysed, and felt so vulnerable, what will all of you, who know me, the professional, successful entrepreneur, think of me when I post my mission - “to provide a safe and open environment for 1 million people to show up as their authentic self, and begin to enjoy deeper connections and relationships with ease. I do this by equipping them with empathy, offering guidance through the discovery process, helping them with accountability through progressive goal setting and inspiring them to be vulnerable.”
As you read my mission, I want to share my fears. They were "What makes me think I can do this?". The fear of "Am I capable of pulling this off?". The fear of "What if I fail?". The fear of "What is Triptta on about with relationships and fear, I am strong and I have a ‘real’ career with ‘real’ targets and challenges?". The fear of being judged as too soft and frivolous when I focus on relationships and vulnerabilities.
After 10 plus days of angst, irritability, stress, fast chanting, meditation, long walks, arguments with myself (and my husband) I finally updated my LinkedIn account. And the minute it was done, I felt the reward of being vulnerable – 4 messages from people sending me personalised messages on how awesome they thought my new journey is. 4 messages from people highlighting my courage. To them I say thank you for the PROMPT REINFORCEMENT... it was needed. And to my readers here I say “vulnerability is beautiful.”
Before I could articulate my mission, I carved out a mantra that I read every morning, and every moment I feel my vulnerabilities creeping up on me. My mantra picks me up, gives me the drive to live up to it. My mantra is
“I have the courage to show up as the kind loving person I am. I know that by being open to present my higher loving self to the world, I will be a role model for many who want to embody courage by living ‘Vulnerability is beautiful and makes the authentic you. I deeply believe, presenting our authentic selves to ourselves and the world is what will lead to love and harmony in this world today.”
My mantra is a careful formulation, considering my aspirations, my vulnerabilities, my values and my vision for a world I want my daughter to grow up in. The crafting of this mantra has also been an integral part of my journey. Letting go of the want to control has allowed empathy in my life.
4. Conscious Journaling
The process of uncovering my vulnerabilities and putting a name to my fears has been a long one. It started in 2009 with a blank stare in the mirror and a question, “What are my vulnerabilities? I control my environment so tightly that I am not exposed from any side! “
It took me a while to see a pattern in my journaling that I was constantly blocking out all sorts of fear. Fear of rejection, fear of judgement, fear of not being liked, fear of not being good enough, worthy but my biggest fear was and is the fear of not being valued.
I use the term conscious journaling , because it was never a ‘dear diary’ moment for me… I was making a conscious effort in getting to know me. My mindfulness practice was making me more and more aware of how I was showing up, it was making me more aware of feelings in my body. I would feel my pulse begin to pick up when unconsciously I was vulnerable. I learnt to hear my little voice… it is with this awareness that I started jotting down my inner thoughts and my physical manifestations of my vulnerabilities. And I still do this now.
I will close by saying , I hope my blogs and my journey of vulnerability helps you get closer to you and and your want to confront your fears and start your discovery process. There is a very different kind of joy that you will experience.. that I promise you.
Here for you!
*Fears & limiting beliefs, are built up over our lifetimes and stored in our emotional brain / limbic system. In times perceived as threatening by our limbic system, our emotional brain puts these beliefs and fears up as iron clad walls of ‘facts’ in front of us and stimulates a response to protect us , typically these responses are behaviors we have perfected over the years… the very ones that hide our vulnerability. These are our barriers to realizing our authentic self.