How To Cope With A Vulnerability Hangover

March 23, 2017

We’ve all felt it right? You’ve just shared you heart. Maybe with one person, maybe many. It seemed right at the time but now you have this ache in your gut. Did you share too much? You begin to feel exposed. That nagging feeling of doubt gnaws away at you. You can’t take it back, though you wish you could.

Last week my husband shared part of his story in church. It was truly courageous. One of his many traits that I love is his willingness to be brave to encourage people. This particular talk was raw, open and filled with love for others. Everything that makes me so proud to be his wife. When he spoke, he was overcome with emotion, tears welled up and it was difficult for him to go on, but he did. He did the hard stuff. He was willing to go deep in the hope that it might help someone else. He knew that it wasn’t just about him anymore. His story now belonged to others too.

It’s not easy to bare your soul in front of a group of people, and sometimes it’s not easy to share with just one.

Anytime you put yourself out there, whether in public or with a friend at your local coffee shop, you open yourself up to that dreaded vulnerability hangover. You know, the regret, the cringe factor, the awkwardness. It’s not comfortable, the self-doubt that follows tends to play with your mind.

It seems such a tough price to pay for something that took so much courage. But what we need to remember is that when we share our heart, we give others permission to share their heart too. We let them know its okay to stop hiding what is broken and bring it out into the light.

And in the light, we get to embrace our story.

So when you are struck with that cringe worthy, over share, ‘find me a place to hide’ feeling. Remember…

Something inside of you knew that you had to share – you knew in that moment that it was right. You need to trust that. Remember that. Fight off the doubt. That doubt will close you off from a world that needs you.

Know the impact you are having – Our stories tend to take on another chapter when they are shared. They start to weave their way in the hearts of others, speaking truth into their own journey. Your words will continue bring comfort, long after they have been spoken.

And be encouraged. You have given someone else permission to be vulnerable too. You have opened up place where they can share their soul when ready.

Freedom comes when we take what is hidden in darkness and expose it to the light. That begins with our own bravery and our willingness to be vulnerable and share our hearts.

“Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.” Brené Brown


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