“I define connection as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship.” – Brene Brown
You may have seen Brene Brown’s TED talk about The Power of Vulnerability; you may have read one or more of her many books. She asks us some pretty important questions I think, which have a bearing on our sense of ‘I am enough’, our connections with others, our emotions and our sense of belonging. They feel particularly important at this time of year, when we are perhaps connecting even more (willingly or otherwise!) with our colleagues, family and friends after a few years where our ability to connect meaningfully has been challenged:
What does belonging and connection mean for you?
How does belonging and connection show up in your day-to-day?
From where do you draw courage to ‘be seen’?
How do you recognise the love and belonging in your life?
As a social worker and researcher, Brene Brown dug deep into what it is to be vulnerable and how this relates to connection and belonging.
She describes shame as a fear of disconnection and asserts that for us to fully connect with others, we need to have the courage to “allow ourselves to be really seen”. And that means sharing our vulnerability. Vulnerability might manifest more clearly at particular times in our lives, perhaps as we start a new role or career, when things change at home, when we’re embarking on new relationships or ways of working.
Those Brown interviewed gave examples of vulnerability being ‘saying I love you first’ or the willingness to do something where there are no guarantees or the willingness to invest in a relationship that may or may not work out.
She identifies from her research the variable that separates people who have a strong sense of love and belonging and the people who really struggle for it – they believe they’re worthy of that love and belonging. That’s it.
So connection and belonging really matter. Asking yourself those questions really matters. You really matter.
The Consciously Connected Coaching Collective is a place to connect with other passionate coaches – to share learning, ideas, the highs and the lows of your coaching journey and find support and togetherness. You can show up authentically and with curiosity – and truly celebrate the joy of who you are and what you do