Vulnerability in Business and Life
I am a huge believer in vulnerability practice in our daily lives. I have committed to practicing vulnerability through journaling, meditating, and being willing to learn - but we'll get to that later.
I'm also a very avid learner of all things business, and I try to incorporate my vulnerability practices into my real life every day. I know that they bleed into my business, but I can honestly say that I usually don't take inventory of where or how.
I want to tell you a story of how this actually did bleed into my business and I did take inventory!
I posted a question into a private Facebook group of about 3,000 people, and 40 people responded enthusiastically. We chatted offline, and it felt really productive! A couple of days later, I posted the exact same question, verbatim, into a different Facebook group that actually had more people in it… and zero people responded.
So, in one group, 40 people were really excited about what I had to say. And then in another group, no one felt compelled to reply, or even simply 'like' the question.
I felt perplexed! But I also felt hurt, and as I felt that emotion rising, I checked-in with myself.
What is this about? Why does that hurt my feelings?
The truth is that we're people first, and accepting that pain is part of the process of growing and succeeding. It's super powerful! Within a few seconds, I was into analysis mode and I decided to tweak a couple of things about the question and repost it again… it fell flat, so I moved on.
I knew that I had gotten this response in group one, and it probably helped my resolve. I also knew that it fell flat in the second group, for reasons I probably would never understand.
Maybe it was the Facebook algorithm…
Perhaps it was the wrong time of day…
Maybe it was just the wrong Facebook group to be posting it in altogether.
This was not about my own self-worth or about the worth of my business - I can tell you that with certainty. But, I did have to check in with myself because we are all human beings, so running from that is wasteful.
Something about that experience felt really big to me – that check-in moment with myself. I asked myself: If I had gotten the same response from the first group that I got from the second group (crickets!), would I have even posted it into the other group? I know that my answer would have been yes.
This is why I am successful - because I practice vulnerability and check-in with myself constantly:
Why does this feel scary?
Am I scared to look stupid?
Is this question actually valuable, will this help somebody else?
Is this in line with who I am as a person and my business?
It’s always going to be scary or feel weird when people don't respond. Putting yourself out there and hearing crickets in response happens to people every single day. Here is where practicing vulnerability gets really powerful.
Understand that putting yourself out there and stretching beyond your comfort zone is the only way to actually grow as a person and as a business. I am not saying this in a vacuum. As a coach, this is a huge part of what I do with my clients, and I feel the exact same fears: waiting until you have it perfect so you don't look stupid, that video that you haven't posted because you're afraid of what your coworkers are going to think - that's not vulnerability. That is hiding and cowering!
Brene Brown actually said, "Perfectionism is not self-improvement. It is, at its core, about trying to earn approval.” It's debilitating. And frankly, I struggle with it every single day.
You are not how many people respond to the post in the Facebook group. If you commit to practicing vulnerability, you will absolutely be better at business. It's not that you completely overcome your fears, but you are willing to face them faster and with resolve.
So, now it’s time to start developing your own vulnerability practice! You are welcome to grab mine by clicking here, and tweak and grow your own from there. I'm sharing this because I know that it will change your business and your life if you commit to it! I hope you find it helpful.