The Wall

I was just watching a show and they said something really simple but really profound: “We have to live life the fullest, even if it means getting hurt.” This is something I’m not just not good at it, I’m awful at it. Like a lot of people, the idea of getting hurt absolutely terrifies me. To the point I have so many walls built up, I don’t even know how to begin to knock them down. How do you allow yourself to open up and live life to the fullest when you’re so afraid of the getting hurt part?

I understand the thought logically of course. It makes perfect sense in my head that we just have to let go and allow ourselves to feel things sometimes. We have to allow ourselves to care and to love another person, even if it means getting crushed in the process. But my heart and my emotions just don’t follow. I do everything I can to avoid feeling things for someone else. For allowing myself to feel things for someone else. I don’t want to let yet another person trample all over me so I end up running away or pushing away. I want to be able to love freely but then my head jumps in and says, “Nope, don’t do that. That person doesn’t deserve it. He’ll just hurt you like all the rest.” I’ve seen other people be able to do it, to be able to just love and feel with reckless abandon. Then I’ve watched them get hurt. Some of them have become jaded like I have but others never let it stop them from loving the next person just as much.

I’m so good at enjoying the little things in life…breathing and taking in everyday. But the vulnerability…the opening up…that part I’m not so good at (despite having read an entire book on the subject). It’s one of those things that unfortunately no amount of reading, no real amount of inspiration is going to help. I have to somehow look inside myself and be able to find ways to get out the jackhammer and start taking down those walls brick by brick. If anyone knows of a good hardware store, please let me know (and excuse the totally intentional Pink Floyd reference in my title) đŸ™‚

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4 thoughts on “The Wall

  1. Hi, Jackie.

    I was like you for a long time. I resisted getting hurt. I kept people at arm’s length, missed out on experiences and opportunities, and let that little voice of caution convince me there was a safer alternative. The truth is, we’re brought up believing that pain is a bad thing, that we can get through life unscathed if we just make all the right decisions–and it’s utter crap.

    BrenĂ© Brown said it best in her TedX speech about vulnerability. She said, “You are imperfect. You are wired for struggle, but you are worthy of love and belonging.” This is what we need to remember, what we need to teach our children, because we are wired for struggle.

    Sure, it hurts; sometimes devastatingly so. But we’re built for it. We’re built to fight for what we want, for struggle, for survival. I found the key was not to compare myself to others. Focus on yourself, on what you want in life, then go for it with complete abandon. Understand that you might get hurt in the process, but if you don’t take the risk, you’ll never reap the reward.

    All My Best,

    Liana

    P.S. If you’d like to watch BrenĂ©’s speech, you can find it here: http://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_on_vulnerability.html

    1. Hi Liana.

      Thank you so much for the fantastic comment. You made some great points. Logically I know if I don’t take the risk, I will never reap the reward. It’s just applying that in my life that seems to be the hard part. But I know I’ll figure it out. I also read Brene Brown’s book “Daring Greatly” (the book I mentioned reading in the post) which was based around her TedEx speech. I think it may be worth a reread for me though.

      Thank you again and wishing you a very merry holiday season!

      1. Hi Jackie,

        It’s my pleasure. Logic can be a tricky monster, can’t it? I found, when I started with something small, I could beat logic. Like someone who is just learning how to invest their money for the first time, start with something that has low risk and high return. Then, up your game. Keep that process going–brick by brick–and share your endeavors with those you trust so they understand what your intent is.

        Making your intentions known to those you trust does several things:

        1. It helps you remain accountable.
        2. It keeps you from backing down at the last second.
        3. They understand, because you tell them, that the support you need from them is not to discourage you from trying something because you might fail or get hurt, but to encourage you to keep trying even when you fail and get hurt.
        4. You help them grow in the process.

        As I stated on Twitter last week, anything is possible when you set your mind to it. You are more powerful than you think. The only person losing out when you let your fear (aka “logic”) take over is you. If you’d like to talk more in-depth privately, I’m happy to add myself to your cheering section.

        Happy Holidays!

        Warmly,

        Liana

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