One little, teeny, tiny word

A few years ago, I found Ali Edwards One Little Word through Brené Brown’s blog. One little word – it sounded lovely, and a little suffocating. I like lots of words.

Not this year. This year I have one word. Vulnerable. And for whatever reason, typing it out, holding it as some sort of beacon, or maybe just a talisman, is comforting.

“I define vulnerability as uncertainty, risk and emotional exposure.” (Daring Greatly, Brené Brown)

I have been thinking about it a lot lately. Talking it over with Ben on a walk. Mulling it over while I basked in the last waning hours of the comfort of 2014. This year Ben and I are putting ourselves out there, collectively and individually, personally and professionally – because we were asked, because it was a desire on our hearts or because it was the opportunity that was there, again. And well, if you are mustering the courage for everything else, why not add this too?

The thing is, I like vulnerable. Then we started adding these things to 2015, and now I am staring down this year and it is terrifying. It is uncertain and risky and complete emotional exposure – it is the epitome of vulnerable. No part of success is guaranteed. Failure most definitely is an option. And there is a giant, flashing, gaudy marquis, “You are not enough” standing right in front of me.

But I am drawing on the quiet truth that it is wrong and moving forward. At least that is my plan. Because more than anything else, putting myself out there, this year of vulnerable, is freeing.

“…The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood…

…who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

Theodore Roosevelt’s speech Citizenship In A Republic, delivered at the Sorbonne (1910)

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