​“You wear your heart on your sleeve far too much.”

Growing up I heard that more times then I care to count.

If I got picked on it was because I wore my heart on my sleeve.

If I got my feelings hurt it was because I wore my heart on my sleeve.

And living with an alcoholic parent, if I got caught up in their shit storm it was because I wore my heart on my sleeve.

I grew up learning that it wasn’t OK to share your vulnerability with the world. If you did you got hurt. If you did you’d be viewed as weak and open to be taken advantage of.

And guess what happened as a result?

When I was hurting I’d say I was fine.

When something upset me, I’d swallow the upset. I literally and figuratively ate my feelings. Gobbled them right up so as to not leave a crumb for anyone else to consume.

Ultimately I grew into an adult that painted a rosy picture for the outside world when my real, behind closed doors world was sometimes grey with dots of rose.

Here’s the thing…I’m not sharing this with you for attention, pity or to infer that I had it harder than anyone else. Lord knows there are many folks who’ve experienced struggles far greater and harder than my own.

I’m sharing this with you because if you’re hiding your heart (vulnerability) from the world, please do yourself and the world a favor and stop hiding it. It’s not too late to change course and to learn that vulnerability is a good thing.​

Take it from someone who took a long ass time to learn that her own vulnerability has always been source of strength and not something to ever be ashamed of.


The BIG, HUGE thing I’ve come to understand … all the times I hid my vulnerability I was hurting me far more than anyone else ever could. In putting on my Polly Anna face for the world I missed out on deeper connections. I denied support from others when I needed it most. Not to mention, I made it difficult for anyone to get close to me, including my own self.

I’m done with all the bullshit that comes with hiding my own vulnerability from the rest of the world. I’m wearing my heart on my sleeve no matter what. I’m displaying it proudly for everyone to see. And as a reminder to be my most vulnerable, authentic self I got this…

My first tattoo…so now I’m truly and literally wearing my heart on my sleeve.

I’m sharing my feelings, my stories, speaking my truth, and showing up in any given situation as me (warts and all). It’s been a process, one made up of baby steps, but it’s one that I’m committed to.


Brené Brown shared in her book Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead the following…

“Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability, and authenticity. If we want greater clarity in our purpose or deeper and more meaningful spiritual lives, vulnerability is the path.”

She is so right!! In addition to all of that, I’ve also gained…

Freedom from having to keep up appearances. No more painting pictures that don’t fit the reality. The person you’re getting in word and action is the real me.

Acceptance from people who fit with me instead of me being someone I’m not in order to fit with them.

Connection. Since we connect with others from our heart, it makes perfect sense that in being vulnerable with others I’m connecting on a deeper level.

So my friends, if you’ve been hiding your heart (vulnerability) I invite you to share it with the world. Share it proudly. Share it boldly. Share it knowing that what you will gain in return is something truly amazing!

There is absolutely no shame in wearing your heart on your sleeve! What are you waiting for?

You’re not alone. (If I can be of support, please reach out.)

From my transparent, open heart to yours…much love and light to you…

Originally published at www.whatswithinu.com.

Originally published at medium.com