Brené Brown did the world a great service when she shared, from her research and experience, about the importance of being willing to be vulnerable. But just because her TEDx talk went wildly viral and has been applauded by millions around the planet doesn’t make it any easier to stand, exposed, before others.
I know, because I teach. Not the kind of stand-behind-a-podium-reading-notes-you-developed-years-ago teaching, but teaching where you know you have to always be a learner, that each group you teach will be different, and that what matters most is always their engagement, not your glorious words. Teaching, facilitating. and sharing stories are areas of my work where I challenge myself to stand in front of others in the vulnerable void, a place where I’m willing to let go and not know.
Where do you practice working from that place of vulnerability?
I wrote this on the eve of launching a new course. (Not surprisingly, it feels vulnerable to share it!)
I love it I hate it
It is my audience, my stage
Where I come out to the world
It is my place to design
my excuse to spend hours reading
tied to my computer, mapping the timing,
dreaming of guests
I’m anxious to meet.
It is my prison
Where I have to wake at ungodly hours
to alarm clocks designed to crush the muse.
They call it training; I don’t like the word
I train my dog and horses.
Educare, to lead forward, is the verb I follow.
Not pretending that I see a world
you haven’t imagined.
It is where,
after eight hours of communion
evaluation forms are passed around.
On a ten point scale how did I do?
Tell me, did I change the life you have yet to live?
Because you don’t yet know
and neither do I
but let that be our direction.
Not just whether you liked my jokes
or the style of my blouse.
Did I impress you? (eight points)
Or really impress? (a ten)
Or did I impress upon you
the kernel of a dream
which if you follow it
will become so much more
so that in the future
when I am perhaps forgotten
You will find more of you
and say hello
to a part of you
creative and whole
that you have just remembered.