When it comes to striving to live the best life I can live, and following my passion as a writer, I share a lot of things with you, my reader. I’ve recounted a number of stories about my life, and anecdotes from my experience.
One of the things I have learned in working to be a better writer is the need to connect. If you do not feel a connection with me, odds are I cannot and will not hold your attention. As such, the story will be ignored and any idea I want to share unseen.
For a large portion of my life, I was not good at letting people in. The primary reason was, this will likely not be a surprise, fear. The fear in question was threefold — fear of judgment, fear of rejection, and fear of abandonment.
While I am better at addressing my fear and sharing myself, I still hold back. Partially this is because I still struggle with these fears…and partially I am concerned about what happens if I let you in too deep. Not just you, but anyone, really.
This, too, is a fear. If I let someone in too deep will I give them the power to destroy me?
The folly of expectation
All of these fears are based on what I call the “what if?” principle of self-doubt. Simply put, asking yourself “what if?” about the outcome of any given topic paralyzes your from acting.
I refer to this as “what-iffing” yourself to death. In the past, I did this a lot, and in so doing stagnated for a long time.
Please note — I do not regret my past, but I acknowledge that my previous lack of professional accomplishment is a direct result of this. For example, I didn’t pursue a career as a radio DJ because of all the “what-ifs” regarding where I might land, what format of music they might be playing, leaving my friends behind, making or not making new friends, and so on.
The question of “What if?” can be useful when applied to debating a new situation initially. Asking it once is often a part of the decision-making process. But once you start asking it again and again and again, it becomes nothing but a tool for paralysis and indecision.
Thus we come to today. As I write more about mindfulness, conscious reality creation, and positivity, I find that sharing my experience can help you with seeing the benefits of these notions for yourself. It’s perfectly ok — until I start to question if I am oversharing and giving you too much information.
Does sharing too much of myself make me vulnerable? And if so, is that necessarily a bad thing?
Why fear vulnerability?
You and I live in a fear-based society. Emphasis is frequently placed on lack and scarcity, and being fearful of the unknown. Not to put too fine a point on it, but this has all been put in place to disempower people.
You are more powerful than you may realize. You have the ability to use mindfulness to know and be aware of what you are thinking and what and how you are feeling. That awareness lets you influence, alter, and even control your thoughts and feelings. From there, you can make the best choices for intentional actions to take.
What has vulnerability got to do with this? Part of our fear-based society tells you and me that the vulnerable make for easy prey. When you are vulnerable you open yourself up to predators, to vultures, to all kinds of bad people who will destroy you if you let them.
Is that true? For the most part, no. Sure, there ARE bad people in the world. But for the most part, like you and me, most people are just trying to live. Or at the very least, to survive.
Yet the message is clear that if you are vulnerable, you become easier to destroy.
But in truth, unless someone murders you and ends your life, you cannot be truly destroyed.
I know that the idea of rebuilding, starting over, reinventing yourself, and other follow-ups to being destroyed are daunting and even scary. But know this — you have done it before. You will do it again.
I am not who I was just yesterday. This is, however, far less dramatic than the difference between who I was over 24 hours ago versus who I was over 24 years ago.
Change means that what I share today may be insignificant tomorrow
Because of the inevitability of change, today’s big deal is tomorrow’s nothing.
Thus, whatever makes you vulnerable is subject to change.
The things I fear to share or overshare might seem like a big deal. This is not to invalidate them, however, it is important to see that anything that makes me vulnerable now may not impact me later.
When I am afraid that sharing something too personal about myself will cause you to judge me, reject me, or abandon me, it can help to be mindful of the impermanence of that. There is any number of people who were in my life and close to me years ago that are not anymore. Some just drifted away, but there were some who rejected me, judged me, and ultimately abandoned me. Yet as you can read — I am still here.
Even recognizing this, there are aspects of myself I do not need to share with you or anyone. Why? Because keeping some privacy is important. Too much exposition doesn’t just lessen any inherent mystery, it also may be unhelpful to a point I am trying to make.
Oversharing is like Grandpa on The Simpsons — he goes on and on to the point where everyone walks away before he even concludes his thought. If in sharing my stories and experiences I never get to the point, you will lose interest. Hell, I know I would.
As I grow more comfortable with sharing additional aspects of myself with you, my hope is that you see yourself in my trials, tribulations, mistakes, triumphs, and overall experiences. This could, in turn, help you to see that if I am worthy and deserving of good things, so are you.
Keep being the best you that you can be. Share as you feel appropriate and comfortable.
You are worthy and deserving of using your mindfulness to find and/or create the reality in which you desire to live. When all is said and done, you matter, whatever you share or not.