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Protective vs Vulnerable

Coming out of an intensive training this weekend, I am star-struck from the powerful experience with a phenomenal teacher. Ms. Toni Zimmerman, from CO State University, lead our class with competence and humility, setting the tone for authentic learning and vulnerability from all participants.

What we all expected to be a torturous four days of droning on, ended up leaving us energized and empowered to go out and TRY. She was the perfect model of an authority figure who leads with emotional maturity. Her method of introducing the information (or "data," as she calls it), peaking our curiosity and then coming alongside us as we walked through and searched for it it ourselves made us all feel like we could do it.

Communication is more effective when it's vulnerable. Many of us operate with an air of self-protection, using weapons of command and absolutism to bully our way through conversations, requiring our listeners to stand on the defense, protect their own insecurities, and hide when they don't know the answer. But if we can push ourselves to lay down these weapons and instead face our fears of looking silly, incomplete, and human, we will be able to secure the connections we need to survive.

Unsplash photo cred: Johnathan Borba

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