Guard Be Gone
We each have a past. Our past dips us in experiences and those experiences are probably all over the place with good, best, bad and even ugly at moments. Enter new person in your life. They don't know your complete past and you don't know theirs. How will it play out? Let's think of them as an M & M. Yes a little piece of candy-coated chocolate. In fact, some people you meet might be so wonderful, to you, they are like the whole bag, but let's just say for a moment they are just one piece of candy. (I've chosen candy because I am on a sugar detox now...) Candy. Yum. So to you, this person is a yummy piece of chocolate coated candy. You know, they could even be an ice cream cone dipped in a chocolate shell... The point is, this person, to you, is sugar coated to the core and wonderful, but when you get to their personality or being or aura, they dipped themselves in a shell and aren't going to let you in or might, but it will be crack by crack. In fact, they might even be wearing a very heavy suit or armor - so ready up your battle axe!! Still, to you it's a candy coated shell, but still a shell, and guess what, you aren't going to be able to crack it or eat the whole bag even. It's a shell and maybe even a wall of a shell and don't wage war on it. Accept it, but understand the person might be in a different place (and/or time). You may even be an egg that needs some cracking or meet one. Careful peeling and cracking it and by all means don't step in or be walking on them. Some people have a shell so thick it is like a Galapagos Turtle. Old, hardened, shell and not moving in any particular direction - mostly still and slow. Welcome to Guard Be Gone. Can you teach, train, help or even send enough love to remove the shell and allow vulnerability to flow? Can a person who has dipped themselves in a shell unlayer, unlearn, unburden and allow themselves to be vulnerable to you? Are you the one walking about with your sword ready for battle? Are you people slaying before they ever get close to you? People are all different and our shells and armor are too. What will happen to you if you allow yourself to be vulernable? Will you get hurt? Will you be in pain? Will you be in love? Will you have the time of your life? Will you be stuck in the mantras of protection? Are you stuck in your own? Here are 15 ways to help someone be just a little more vulnerable to you and you to them: 1. Be Open and Honest and Loving. 2. Share and be open emotionally. 3. Do not be scared of change and uncharted territory. Trust yourself to take that first step. 4. Open your heart to love. Tell people how much they matter to you. Try not to greet a new person thinking "How is this person going to hurt me?" Instead try changing up the tape playing in your head to something more positive like "What am I going to learn from this new person no matter what?" 5. Everyone has feelings, fears and worries. Try not to be afraid to show them and speak about them. We all have a lot of common ground in reality. 6. Understand your own insecurites and how they play out in your relationships with others. 7. Look at the situation differently. You can only control yourself, your responses, your behavior. 8. Don't mistake vulnerability for weakness. Often people who show softer sides are the strongest of the bunch. 9. Improve communication. Goes up there with #1 and #2. Take time for someone new in your life and allow them to get to know you and you to know them. 10. Lose the "It will take forever to get to know me because my history and past are so lengthy" approach. Take time with new people, whether 18 or 55 or 75. A new person in your life doesn't know you. 11. Don't carry your past into now with the new person. They haven't done anything to you and aren't the past people. If Tim, Sally and Sue hurt you before, well this is Jane, not Tim, Sally or Sue. Jane is just Jane. 12. Don't expect someone to Google you to know you. If you are out there and your bio is up, posted and for the world to see, error on the side of "they don't have you memorized". 13. You may be the greatest person in your own mind. Give someone else a chance to discover just how amazing you are. 14. Take risks and take that leap of faith. Have self-confidence. Risk rejection. You may feel some pain. Pain helps us grow. On the other hand, you may feel nothing but love and joy. You won't know until you risk it. Leap, look back, learn. 15. Know when not to be vulnerable. There are some cases where safety is more important. Being vulnerable is not a negative. When used properly, it helps us grow. It's that old "benefit of the doubt" saying in full motion.... leave the baggage behind. My Best, Elizabeth Hamilton-Guarino
About Elizabeth Hamilton-Guarino
Elizabeth is the Founder and CEO of The Best Ever You Network and author of Percolate - Let Your Best Self Filter Through.