“Staying vulnerable is the risk we have to take if we want to experience connection.” -Brene Brown

Last week as I prepared for my self-care talk, something felt off.  I kept practicing all the points I wanted to make, but it didn’t feel like ME.

I had been told that having a PowerPoint presentation along side my speech would be a nice touch.  So with the help of a friend (ahem, I ASKED for help!) we got the PowerPoint all set.  I wanted to add some credibility to who I was, so I had a lot of mental health jargon in there.  Then two nights before I was supposed to give it, I realized that the main reason the speech wasn’t coming together was because I wasn’t being authentic.  I was taking myself WAY too seriously and trying to convince others (and myself) that I was worthy of being up there.  And yes, this happened even after writing my last blog post about “deserving to take up space.”  Things don’t always sync in for me right off the bat.

So there I was stuck with this inauthentic presentation and suddenly I said, “Screw it, I’m just going to do what I do and stop acting so precious about.”  I was trying to be someone I’m not!  Truth is, I can talk about self-care for days.  Non-stop.  I’m that passionate about it.  Now, I may not have the mental health background or ever be named an “expert.”  But, I do know what has helped me!  I have personally fallen off the self-care wagon enough times to have many stories that may be helpful to others.  And so I went up on that stage as ME.

I’m happy to report it went great.  Many people responded well to my vulnerability.  At the end of the day I was reminded that Brene Browns’ quote is really true:

The two most powerful words when we’re in struggle: me too.

ESPECIALLY as caregivers, it’s vital we remember this.  “Me too” is an instant connector with others.  “Me too” can only work if someone takes the first step and shares their vulnerabilities.  Scary, yes!  But totally worth it.

And because there’s no such thing as too many Brene Brown quotes, I will add one more:

Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, accountability and authenticity.

Take heart my friends, you are not alone.  Me too.  Me too.  Me too.  Me too.

Take care of YOU.

 

 

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