There is something terrifying about the possibility of being fully and truly seen. Many of us travel through our lives carrying a persona around that shields us from the potential of being hurt. It’s as if we cannot feel the sting of rejection quite so strongly if the stinger hits the armor rather than our essence.

It’s coming up again and again, all around me. I’m seeing it in me as I shed yet another layer and take some powerful responsibility for the direction I am choosing for my life to take. I see it in my so very brave clients that are moving into their full potential, who are preparing to unearth and share their Spirit-given gifts with the world.

It takes courage to be vulnerable because it is really terrifying to open our hearts and expose them to the world. It is fiercely powerful to be seen without the armor, to come out from hiding, with our hearts on our sleeves. It takes strength, resolve and a maybe even a dash of insanity. But as we do the work, and as we get stronger and feel more empowered from our core, our ability to be vulnerable begins to show itself as a gift rather than a danger.

Oftentimes we choose a path that feels safe or known because we haven’t yet dared to explore our depths. And then when we start to peel off the layers, we realize that the clothes we’ve been wearing have gotten really tight on us and that we don’t really like the style anyway. It is then that we can start the process of really stripping down.

As we move through this stage of growth – the incubation period so to speak – we may be even more challenged. We may be asked by Spirit, our higher selves, and those closest to us to not just pull the layers off, but to take a closer look at our wounds and to finally address them. As we do this, we become stronger; we grow and we stretch and we extend ourselves into this amazing expanded version of ourselves that we never even dreamed we could be.

Sometimes we lose a few people on the journey, but I’ve found that for every one we lose, we gain at least one more (if not more) that holds the same high standards for authenticity that we are demanding of ourselves. And so we shake it off and dive into the new relationships, the new possibilities, and we share in a completely new way.

I’ve got a network of friends and healers that see my potential when they look at me and who nudge me in just the right way at just the right time. I have found that when big change happens, big change happens. Having someone to guide you and/or a loving a community of like-minded individuals with whom you can share your triumphs and tribulations from a place of genuine openness can allow us to feel safe and supported throughout these major shifts.

And if you are just starting out on this journey, and you are feeling an urge to move into something more, but have yet to unearth what that may be, here is a quick exercise that can help you to connect into your True Authentic Self so that you can understand what it is that your spirit is truly yearning to birth (and anything else you might want to know):

Close your eyes and begin breathing from your belly. Breathe in through your nose as your tummy rises and out through your mouth as your tummy falls. Take several breaths like that and then settle into a natural rhythm. Allow yourself to fall into that space and when you feel completely in your body, move your attention up to your heart center. Feel your heart center from that space of being in your body instead of with your mind. If you find yourself overthinking it, without judgment just drop back into your body. When you are settled into your heart space, ask your higher self what she/he would like you to know. Be patient and wait for the answer. It may not come immediately and there are a myriad of different ways in which it can show up. You may feel something, sense something, see a picture or hear words. You may not get anything until later that day when you hear a message come through a song or the words of a friend. Enjoy the process and trust that the information will find you if you don’t push for it. With a little patience and practice, you can develop a fulfilling relationship with your higher self.