Fear of Being Seen

Posted on Nov 17, 2014 | by Brenda Stanton

“Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when you are brave enough to explore the darkness will you discover the infinite power of our light.” ~Brené Brown

Amy Cuddy’s Ted Talk shows you how to literally take up space in the world.

I highly recommend practicing some of the postures (as she suggests in private) and accessing how you feel inside yourself.

Then, access how you’d feel outside in the world.

Its one thing to feel powerful and confident in yourself when you’re alone. But taking this confident, self assured SELF out into the world – for everyone to SEE – well, that’s a completely different story.

How others see you is vitally important to you. You don’t want that to be the case, but it is – the world truly is a mirror.

And how the world and others saw you, or more importantly didn’t see you, as a kid, has a profound and dramatic effect on how you show yourself to the world now – as an adult.

Most of us (women especially) – who were very open, vulnerable and self-expressed as kids – had to shut down major parts of ourselves in order to survive our environments.

Maybe the fear was outshining an authority figure – and you needed to dim your light in order to please them and receive some sort of love.

Regardless of why you had to shut-down- the deepest, most expressed, most creative, most beautiful, most radiant, most brilliant parts of you – needed to be protected – so you hid them.

Then, in order to TRY to feel better, you found external masks to put on – ambitious, independent, strong, motivated, hard working, likable, etc.- so you could try to gain some worth in the world….some badge of validation.

Yet, regardless of any badges, validation, or recognition you earned – you’ve probably realized, if it’s relying on external factors – it will never fulfill you.

To help you branch-out and truly begin to express your True Self again, check-out the Worthy Work below which takes Amy’s talk into account as a beautiful first step.

 

WORTHY WORK

I often talk about the “burden of potential” and how heavy and frustrating it can feel
to feel like you’re sitting on a mound of unrealized potential and have no idea how-to express it – or where you express it. To help you move forward, we first need to look back – to assist you, consider the following points:

Your Deepest Longings & Jealousies: As I mentioned above, there are parts of you – light-filled, beautiful, radiant, colorful parts of you that are longing to be expressed – but another part of you dreadfully fears being seen. To help you get clarity on what these dormant parts are, ask yourself – who I am deeply jealous of? Who’s living a life that I yearn to live? What are they doing that I know I could do?

Projecting Your LIGHT: When you realize that you have envy and jealousy towards others who, deep down, you believe have it better off, or have something you don’t, it’s great news because now you can see it! Nothing can change or transform until you become aware of it. Next step is to ask yourself: what qualities in them do I admire, envy, or believe come naturally to them? Do I believe I don’t have these qualities? Or, if I’m truthful with myself, am I just deeply afraid to express these qualities for fear of humiliation, retribution, punishment, loss of love, etc.?

Start Slowly & Safely: Along the same lines as Amy’s talk about leveraging body language to change your feelings about yourself, take the aspects you documented above about others you envy and begin to “fake it until you become it” with these aspects. For example, if someone you’ve envious of has qualities you admire – take one of those qualities and begin to express a little of it each day. The important thing is to do this slowly and safely because there is a very young part of you that is terrified to have these parts seen (again) out of fear.

We’ll continue with this topic in upcoming Note Worthy’s – remember to have fun with this exercise – this is some serious growth you’re tackling so remember to be gentle and kind with yourself as you continue to become your True Self.

Love,

Brenda

 


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