Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Do you have the courage it takes to be vulnerable?

Oprah Winfrey has spoken many times to huge audiences.  When one friend asked her what she thought the secret of her success was she said without hesitating, I have the courage to be vulnerable.  (The quote is paraphrased).

I recognize that sometimes in my blog posts I tell similar scenarios more than once.  I took a college class once that taught effective study.  They brought up the point that the human mind does not retain information for much longer than a week, unless the information is repeated multiple times.

Looking at the same concept from a different side, psychology teaches that it takes FOUR POSITIVE comments to erase the effects of ONE NEGATIVE comment.  I DO repeat myself in my posts concerning ideas that are important to me, and I hope important to others that read my posts.

One of my dear friends once paid me one of my favorite compliments of all times.  He said, "You are very open, and willing to be vulnerable.  That gives others permission to also be open and vulnerable."

I believe that we, as human beings, have a great many more things in common than things that divide us.  For example, most of us have two eyes, a nose, a mouth, and hair (well that differentiation just lowered the pool a great deal for over 50 men...lol). 

Now let's look  beyond the physical into the human psyche.  We all came to the world through procreation.  We all had parents (even if they were not good parents.)  We all have to eat to survive, drink to survive. 

We all NEED LOVE!  Many anecdotal experiences have been documented that show the negative effect of lack of love.  Babies, that are in the NICU and can't be held and touched much or at all show remarkable improvement just by human touch.  (When they can be held, touched, and loved).

This morning I woke up in a miserable place.  When I first awaken I hurt...everywhere.  Some mornings I am convinced that even my hair follicles hurt. (I have degenerative spinal disease, fibromyalgia, and arthritis.  I also have two terrible knees...so much damage from 10 car accidents, (I'm a great driver...I just made some very poor choices who I let drive.)    

To make things worse each and every morning I awaken to the knowledge that Nyle is dead.  My beloved, my sweetheart, my soulmate is gone.  The length of time before we are reunited feels as though it will last forever!

This morning I really, truly, wished to just turn over in bed and stay there.  There are times that staying in bed is a necessary decision for me due to physical health issues.  On the other hand if I can drag myself from bed, take my meds, eat, and exercise, I usually do oh so much better.  After all, medical science has proven that exercise stimulates Serotonin production in our brain.  We need that Serotonin to feel sated...at peace.

I do NOT share my infirmities as a means to gain pity, or to show that I'm just a little bit nobler than the rest of the human race (just nobler than MOST of the human race...hee hee hee).  I share my struggles in the hope that somebody will be enriched.  Somebody will think, "Hey if that red haired lady can fight this battle, and not surrender, so can I!"

A wonderful side effect of sharing my struggles is that in reaching out to others I can't help but lift myself as well.  You can't give without receiving in return...I'm NOT referring to receiving a return of a physical, material type of item.  I'm referring to a sense of satisfaction, a warmth that moves clear into your soul. 

The scripture, "It is more blessed to give than to receive," Is oh so true to me.  My greatest joys come from lifting and loving others with no thought about what I will receive in return!

So...I've cheered myself up.  How about all of you out there in Cyber Space.  Fighting with your spouse, divorcing, death of a loved one, mental health issues, physical health issues, financial woes...etc. etc.  Look around you.  There is ALWAYS somebody who needs support and love.  Take cookies to the red headed lady down the street who lost her husband.  Send a card to a dear friend or family member that has tough things going on in their life.

On the other hand do not try to "Fix" people.  Most people in need want someone to listen, REALLY listen to them.  They don't need platitudes, they simply need a hug, or to hear, "I love you." 

Don't say, "Let me know if I can do something."  Show up at their door with gloves on ready to work.  A house ALWAYS has need of cleaning.  Bring a meal that can be frozen if they don't need it right away. (AVOID taking tuna casserole...very few people in this world like tuna in a casserole...lol)

Or if your health limits you to your recliner sometimes, find other ways to serve...phone calls, emails, Facebook, all of these wonderful resources make it possible to serve in multiple ways.

Remember, you may only be one person, but you can be one POWERFUL person!  You have the ability to make your own space and place somewhere that people wish to be in.  Remember to focus on the infinite possibilities that all of us have, and not the limitations that all of us have.

Well, I feel better, I hope that you do too!

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