Tag Archives for " vulnerability "

Grace, Vulnerability and Joy

A piece that I wrote two years ago popped up this morning as a memory on Facebook. It’s a piece on vulnerability that I wrote as I was in the midst of creating radical change in my life (you can find the full blog post HERE).

Not only did accessing a deeper state of vulnerability contribute powerfully to this change, but it opened me up to a much deeper state of grace. And then that heightened state of grace allowed me to be more vulnerable, and so forth and so on in this beautiful dance that I’ve been engaging in over the past several years.
Lately I’ve been really feeling this again. I chose FULLexpression as my word for the year, and as intentions will do, I’ve been nudged over and over again to express myself in ways that have been challenging. I’ve had to be even more forthcoming with my emotions and be even more present to what is happening within me.

It’s been hard and it’s also been ~ again ~ full of grace.

Vulnerability seems to be revealed in layers and with each one that we strip away, a new rawness emerges to be addressed. This excerpt from what I wrote particularly struck me as I read my post again, two years of growth and development later:
“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 maybe even a dash of insanity. But as we do the work, 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.”
I am in awe when I see people being open and vulnerable because I feel like I’m receiving a gift from them…It is the true pearl within the oyster, the wisdom and strength that inspires me to grow and stretch myself even more and even when it would seem easier not to do so.
And I aim to do the same, through my words and one-on-one with my friends, family and clients. By sharing from my heart, I allow others to know that they are honored and held by me and that they have permission to do the same.
Sometimes it is really hard, but it is always liberating. I love more deeply, more fully, more richly when I open myself up in this way.

Sharing from the heart creates relief, space and connection. It opens us up to experiencing a vast array of emotions, which ultimately leads to a greater capacity for joy as well. It allows us to be fully US, our awesome, lovely, sloppy, clumsy, authentic selves.

I absolutely adore that version of you! 

4 Eliciting Intimacy

When I set the intention to journey into more intimacy in all of my relationships, I wasn’t certain what that would mean for me and others in my life.

A part of me thought that I would be met with wide-open arms, and in some instances that was the case. A few of my relationships deepened immensely and there is a beautiful richness to them that allows for soul-baring honesty, profound support, and limitless love. These connections are nourishing me in ways that I never even knew possible. In addition to the increase of emotional intimacy in these friendships, the openness in my heart has fostered an even deeper connection with Spirit, which has spilled over into all of my interactions with others.


The work of deepening intimacy and vulnerability also afforded me the opportunity to experience a new type of romantic love, one that has shown me what it is to be held fully and completely in all areas of my life. This relationship precludes shame-blame energy, which in return, promotes honesty and truly open communication. It fosters a heart-to-heart connection that has opened me to experiencing myself in new ways.

This process was not easy. I had to be really brave and I had to constantly ask myself: How can I go deeper? How can I reveal myself in a way that feels authentic, true, and safe?

A part of what I realized was that as I have grown to feel safer and more secure in my own life, as I have embodied myself more fully, I have been able to create a strong foundation of self-trust and confidence that in turn has created an ability to trust the process of increased vulnerability. I feel safer opening to others because for the first time in many, many years, I feel safe in my body.

That doesn’t mean that it didn’t hurt when my advances for more intimacy weren’t met. It also doesn’t mean that I didn’t experience sadness when it was revealed that the dynamics of some relationships weren’t equal.

It did convey that I had to look deep within my own heart to examine what it was calling forth of me to acknowledge and honor. I entered into another layer of healing and I looked at my pain as honestly as I could to see if and where I was holding myself or others away.

But even when others didn’t meet me head on, there was an overall increase in the depth of all of my connections and the flow of energy around me, from the teller at the bank to the drivers on the road around me to my family and friendships.

Sometimes this process was messy. And sometimes it was full of grace. At times I was triggered and at others I was embraced.

But it was always truthful. It was always heartfelt. It was always me, standing before another with my heart on my sleeve.


To Love Fiercely and Loudly

My dog loves fiercely and loudly. In fact, the more she loves you, the louder she will express it. When she sees someone she loves, she immediately goes into vocal overdrive.

She’s a 70-pound retriever/coon hound mix, so…you can imagine what that can sound like.

Historically I’ve struggled with her fierce, loud love.

I’ve felt like I needed to subdue it, calm it, quiet it. I’ve often wished it would go away. It’s always felt hard to manage.

Take today at the park across from my house as an example:

First she saw my friend, Laura, who she loves. Then she saw my friend, Annie, who she really loves too. By the time she saw Laura’s daughter, Vivian, who she also adores, the entire neighborhood was echoing with the voices of dogs chiming back at her.

I glanced at Laura with frustration etched across my face and she started laughing.

“She loves fiercely,” she said, lightly flinging my own words right back at me.

“And loudly,” I added. And then I laughed too.


Artemis is showing me what I most need to do. I’ve been focused on loving fiercely and I’ve been determined to share that uninhibited love with those around me. I’ve pledged to play in it, write about it, shower you all with it.

This beautiful and sentient and intuitive beast is showing me how to speak it.

She’s demonstrating how such a love sounds. She allows it to bellow out of her and travel along the wind. It makes all of us perk up our ears and listen.

The best love is the love that breaks through the seams of our existence ~ the love that demands that we howl it out to the world unabashed and unafraid.

It is a primal love that is unchecked and unhindered. It reverberates through the night, calling out to others to join in and share in the chorus. It connects us. It makes us stop in our tracks and take notice.

It is a love that demands of us that we be present to it and move with it.

She is my teacher. I forget that sometimes. But she always shows me what I most need to see. And so again today, I choose to love fiercely. The next time you see me, you’d better watch out:

My love just might knock you off your feet.

Fanning the Flames of Love

Have you guys seen this incredibly tender, vulnerable video from Tiger Singleton? He spends over five minutes connecting soul-to-soul with the viewer (you, me) through continued, loving eye contact. I’ve done this in person before and it’s a very intense, beautiful, uncomfortable, and profound activity. I started watching the video and I was surprised to find that even though it was digital, I was experiencing the same thing. I truly felt so beautifully connected to this man that I had never seen before. Also at times I noticed myself wanting to find a distraction because it felt so alive and real. I had to actually kind of force myself to sit through the discomfort and accept the love that he was sharing with me. If you haven’t done this exercise, I encourage you to try it, either by clicking on the video or sharing the exercise with someone in your life.

This actually prompted a pretty major epiphany for me. True, lots has been leading up to it, as is usually the case with epiphanies, but it was huge nonetheless. Over the course of the few hours after my experience with the video, I noticed even more ways in which I hold back from giving and receiving love.

I am really good at sharing love when I set an intention around it. So, I can easily access love and vulnerability while sitting down to write an honest blog post, being in a session with a client, or while facilitating one of the groups or circles that I lead. I can identify a time and place to be open and I can do it, happily and lovingly.

But how can I show up more authentically in my moment-to-moment, day-to-day life? Is it possible for me to be more open on a consistent basis? Truly, to fully connect with others, I have to be willing to show up every day, and not just in private with my clients or friends, but in public and in public forums (even and maybe especially even) places like Facebook and Instagram.

I have been exploring this idea of cracking my heart wide open for a while now, and the idea of loving more fully is both exhilarating and terrifying.

Tiger Singleton did something really true. My guess is that it was both thrilling and scary-as-hell. And yet…he touched me in a way that I’ve rarely felt before. A total stranger opened his heart and was vulnerable so that he could connect with me (and as of right now 144, 831 others).

He’s moving some of us for sure, because this type of vulnerability is more than a breath of fresh air. It’s something that many of us are craving, seeking, and yearning to find. And I want to be able to provide that for others as well. If I can give some of that back to you, then my day feels more complete and my life a little more full.

How do we navigate the digital age in this respect? So much of it causes us to isolate and pull back. It gives us a way to experience the world without really living fully within it. We’ve changed and we connect less in a human-to-human way. When I see you in person, I’m likely to give you a huge hug, hold your hand, look straight into your eyes and listen to you. And when I don’t get to do that enough, I miss it. And you. So how can I create a spark similar to the one that Tiger has ignited when I’m not physically with you? I’m not sure, but I’ll be exploring it more fully as I move forward. (Now that I’ve made a public declaration, I’m committed.) I’d love for you to take this journey with me. Let me know how I can support you by commenting below or by joining me on social media. And if we’re already connected, then I would love for you to hold this intention with me and take the next steps alongside me.

A spark can grow into a flame if given the proper conditions. All it needs is oxygen and in this case, a lot of love.

This is where I hang out in the digital world:




xoxo, Janet

1 Opening to Possibility Through Vulnerability

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.