Don't Be Afraid To Get Personal

For most of my life, I have worked hard to have it all together. It was an expectation I placed on myself. As leaders, we often want people to think we have it all together. Here is a truth I learned: nobody has it all together (insert a sigh of relief for yourself).

After growing his column in Success Magazine over three years, Jason Dorsey reflected on what he has learned and wrote his final column this month. I love this part:

Don’t be afraid to get personal. We’re all human underneath our avatars and LinkedIn titles. We all cry. We all laugh. We all want to belong. We all like getting to that place where we can share a vulnerable moment with someone and courageously say, ‘Me, too.’

My friend, Sue Bates, often hosts on the main stage for our church services. Recently, she capitalized on a moment that I thought was powerful. She told the story of running with a friend who attended a different church. As they were running, her friend said you don't believe that God is good or that he is for you. Sue knew her friend was picking up on how she was feeling and was speaking truth. Sue is one of our pastors and to tell the story to 3,000 people listening to her created a moment where people felt her vulnerability. If you were in attendance that day, you had this feeling of "she's just like me." It drew people in to listen to what more she would say. 

What would it be like if you worked harder at being strategically vulnerable than trying to keep up the "perfect" avatar? I would suspect the people you influence would lean in and listen more. Try it. 

Interested in learning more about the power of vulnerability? Watch Brene Brown, popular author and speaker, present her talk on vulnerability at TedxHouston.