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Everyone Is Afraid Of Showing Their Vulnerable Side, But That’s What Makes Us Stronger

Everyone Is Afraid Of Showing Their Vulnerable Side, But That’s What Makes Us Stronger

For most of us, being strong means having strong set of beliefs and principles that cannot be questioned and always keeping calm and unshaken, whatever the situation is. Yet, it seems that we had it wrong all along. Not recognizing one’s vulnerable side actually lessens their chance of personal growth, because they don’t allow a whole another side of their personality to be expressed, recognized and eventually improved.

In the words of Lao Tzu:

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“A man is born gentle and weak; at his death he is hard and stiff. All things, including the grass and trees, are soft and pliable in life; dry and brittle in death. Stiffness is thus a companion of death; flexibility a companion of life. An army that cannot yield will be defeated. A tree that cannot bend will crack in the wind. The hard and stiff will be broken; the soft and supple will prevail.”

If we want to live a fulfilled life of realized potential and personal growth, we need to give in to the vulnerability and allow ourselves to feel weak and fragile, since it is also part of our nature.

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More honest friendships

Our relationships with our loved ones will become more genuine and sincere, once we open up to them and show our “negative” sides we’ve been hiding from them. Being vulnerable with your friends makes your bond even stronger as they get to see that you go through the same difficulties. Sharing and helping each other grow makes you more empathetic, and your friendship much more honest.

Next time you are anxious, scared or insecure, instead of putting on a brave face, let your friends know what you are going through. You will both feel the relief for staying true to your feelings. Moreover, you will be surprised at how much more you have in common, and finally, you will get support and help, possibly for life.

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Getting to know your true self

We’ve been taught that being strong and confident is good while being fragile and insecure is not. It is no wonder that we’ve learned to hide our “faults” so well that we don’t know who we are any more. So many people today are suffering from social anxiety, a condition that can be easily treated and cured. Yet, many are left untreated because of their unwillingness and inability to acknowledge the issue as it would mean that they are exposed, vulnerable and weak.

We have programmed ourselves to deny our weaknesses so much so that we can’t tell the signs when they are right in front of us. Yet, if we really want to work on continuously improving our lives, first step we need to take is to get to know ourselves better by embracing our vulnerability as well.

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Getting out of your comfort zone for self-realization

There is no faster and better way to personal growth than accepting and embracing our insecurities. Think of all those moments when you felt scared and insecure and wanted to run and hide. Those moments were pushing you out of your comfort zone. Most people’s first response would be to stay in familiar territory and not risk being exposed to their insecurities even if this means not reaching their goals and potentials. However, the lessons we refuse to learn will keep on coming until we face them head on.

Breaking familiar patterns isn’t easy, so we need to take baby steps. We should set small, achievable goals first, before we can tackle the big issue. For example, people struggling with social anxiety should start by practicing speaking in front of familiar groups of friends, and then continue with smaller groups of strangers until they reach their goal of being comfortable at speaking in front of larger groups of unfamiliar people. Comfort zone may seem like a safe sanctuary, but they are in fact keeping us from making any personal progress. Embracing our discomfort will help us eliminate it eventually and achieve our greatest goals.

Featured photo credit: https://unsplash.com/ via images.unsplash.com

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Ana Erkic

Social Media Consultant, Online Marketing Strategist, Copywriter, CEO and Co-Founder of Growato

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Last Updated on January 18, 2019

7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

Some people will have a rain cloud hanging over them, no matter what the weather is outside. Their negative attitude is toxic to your own moods, and you probably feel like there is little you can do about it.

But that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

If you want to effectively deal with negative people and be a champion of positivity, then your best route is to take definite action through some of the steps below.

1. Limit the time you spend with them.

First, let’s get this out of the way. You can be more positive than a cartoon sponge, but even your enthusiasm has a chance of being afflicted by the constant negativity of a friend.

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In fact, negativity has been proven to damage your health physically, making you vulnerable to high levels of stress and even cardiac disease. There’s no reason to get hurt because of someone else’s bad mood.

Though this may be a little tricky depending on your situation, working to spend slightly less time around negative people will keep your own spirits from slipping as well.

2. Speak up for yourself.

Don’t just absorb the comments that you are being bombarded with, especially if they are about you. It’s wise to be quick to listen and slow to speak, but being too quiet can give the person the impression that you are accepting what’s being said.

3. Don’t pretend that their behavior is “OK.”

This is an easy trap to fall into. Point out to the person that their constant negativity isn’t a good thing. We don’t want to do this because it’s far easier to let someone sit in their woes, and we’d rather just stay out of it.

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But if you want the best for this person, avoid giving the false impression that their negativity is normal.

4. Don’t make their problems your problems.

Though I consider empathy a gift, it can be a dangerous thing. When we hear the complaints of a friend or family member, we typically start to take on their burdens with them.

This is a bad habit to get into, especially if this is a person who is almost exclusively negative. These types of people are prone to embellishing and altering a story in order to gain sympathy.

Why else would they be sharing this with you?

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5. Change the subject.

When you suspect that a conversation is starting to take a turn for the negative, be a champion of positivity by changing the subject. Of course, you have to do this without ignoring what the other person said.

Acknowledge their comment, but move the conversation forward before the euphoric pleasure gained from complaining takes hold of either of you.

6. Talk about solutions, not problems.

Sometimes, changing the subject isn’t an option if you want to deal with negative people, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still be positive.

I know that when someone begins dumping complaints on me, I have a hard time knowing exactly what to say. The key is to measure your responses as solution-based.

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You can do this by asking questions like, “Well, how could this be resolved?” or, “How do you think they feel about it?”

Use discernment to find an appropriate response that will help your friend manage their perspectives.

7. Leave them behind.

Sadly, there are times when we have to move on without these friends, especially if you have exhausted your best efforts toward building a positive relationship.

If this person is a family member, you can still have a functioning relationship with them, of course, but you may still have to limit the influence they have over your wellbeing.

That being said, what are some steps you’ve taken to deal with negative people? Let us know in the comments.

You may also want to read: How to Stop the Negative Spin of Thoughts, Emotions and Actions.

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