Connecting with others provides one of the greatest sources of joy. Yet, to experience this joy you must be willing to risk the pain of being hurt. The willingness to be vulnerable requires a great demonstration of courage and the thought of doing so sounds risky. Yet, the greater risk is choosing not to do it. When you allow your walls of protection to come down, you’ll begin to radiate a positive embracing energy, which encourages others to let down their own walls.
Look into the face of someone who has little or no walls of protection. What do you see? The words you use to describe this person are the same words you would use to describe the experience of peace. When you are willing to be vulnerable, people will feel safe around you. You will give them permission to let down their guard and completely express their love in return, perhaps for the first time. The word intimacy has been described as, “in-to-me-see.” Are you willing to allow others to really see you, blemishes and all? By doing so, you will inspire them to let down their guard with you and truly be seen as well.
Find at least one person with whom you can connect and let down your guard. Choose someone you trust who offers encouragement, acceptance, and honesty. Share your deepest feelings with them, as you invite them to share theirs with you, in total confidentiality.
Develop genuine friendships by regularly investing your time with others, intensely listening to them to deepen and nurture the relationship. Next expand your circle to include a community of others who share your desire to connect. This will provide a great opportunity for you to see and be seen.