The woman who sold over five million copies of her book Simple Abundance recently returned to Oprah’s confessional chair for a conversation. At age 61 Sarah Ban Breathnach lost it all. With only a suitcase and a heart full of shame, she showed up at her sister’s door.
What happened? One mistake was hiding behind a mask of business competency that had kept her from connecting to people with financial expertise. Their advice might have helped her as she made important financial decisions.
As she spilled the story of her shame and vulnerability, I remembered researcher Brene Brown’s TED talk on vulnerability. She says that vulnerability is not weakness – it is a measure of our courage and how one handles feeling exposed.
According to Brene’s research when I don’t have self-acceptance I feel shame and think “I am not good enough”. Wholehearted people believe that they are “enough” and are worthy of belonging. They have the courage to be imperfect and the willingness to do something without any guarantees.
The Lesson: Face my vulnerability with courage. The unconditional acceptance of the real Martha will form a deeper bond with others.
Vulnerability is the core of shame and the birthplace of love and belonging. People who feel worthy have the courage to be imperfect. They connect to others from a place of authenticity. Brene Brown