Vulnerability is not weakness: Mastering Shame.

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Just watched this TED speech from Brene Brown and I can not agree more with her.
I wrote before 2 reasons for this blog:??
But since I wrote the HOG tale, I found a 3rd reason for this blog, a more self-serving reason:
3) Exposing my vulnerability under my own condition so it can not hurt me anymore. Being stronger.

And it worked very well. I am surprised there are not more people doing it around me. There several blog from Silicon Valley – entrepreneurs- who does it has well, below is a selection of my favorite/ most vulnerable post I read from entrepreneurs. They all helped me a lot:

So today, for the sake of being stronger I will share with you my most shameful experience, but also tricks I used to overcome shame.

My personal most shameful experience.
You know you sometimes play this game with your close friends asking each other what was the most humiliating /??shameful??moment of your life, I did with several people and to tell the truth it is always a struggle, not to tell the story so much, but to know what is the most shameful moment. Truth is I worked hard from junior high to learn to not be ashamed of anything. Still, let me try to digg out some stories.

What is your dad's name?
I was in primary school, my parent just splited but I was not that upset about it. I visit my dad only on weekend every 2 weeks and never felt really close to him as he is very… introvert? He never say what he feel, what he think, it is very difficult to feel close to him. So I for a long time consider him like a stranger. A stranger that I love and who love me, but a stranger. Event today I have no idea what is his??favorite??movie, color… Don't know too much personal things about him.??
Anyway, I was 8 in my English class and we were learning to say : " My dad is called ___." So one of my classmate dad was called Bernard, she said "My dad is called Bernard", then another one said "My dad is called Jackie." And then it was my turn and I was very self conscious to say my dad's name (Ah Kam) because it is Chinese and doesn't mean anything in French, is very uncommon and I don't know, I was new in this school and I didn't wanted to be weird!??There was this very popular French kid show at that time called Club Dorothee and whose 3 main male hosts where called Bernard, Jackie and Corbier (this is a very uncommon name!).??So when my turn came I say:" My dad name is…heu… Corbier!" and the all class laugh and the teacher loked angry but didn't say anything. I felt like I escaped the humiliation but when the class was over and I went out, I hear someone saying behind me "She doesn't even know her dad's name!" and I felt really hurt.
It is a very stupid story and it can only make sense in my twisted subconscious but it is by far, the most shameful memory I have.

All other shameful moment I can recall are very anecdotic: my boyfriend surprising me picking my nose, all the time I have blood stains on my pants, being super smelly around people…
How do I deal with it? I don't. I feel super ashamed when I realize it and I brainwash my memory, pretend nothing happened.

You may wonder, what about my nervous breakdown of last year? Well to tell the truth I am more proud of it than ashamed so, not the place to talk about it here. But will write a longer post about this experience soon!

How do you learn to be less shameful?
Well you just have to learn to not care what other people think.??

1) You can modify your physical appearance against any social norms.
In primary school I started by cutting my hair very short for the first time (do it very often now, I am more of a short hair person).
The first month I arrived in China I actually shaved my head, for several months. I was inspired by V for Vendetta and I wanted to live in a spiritual world, really not worried about my appearance. Worked very well.

2) Have some role model, people you admire for being shameless.
I watch 30 rock and take Liz Lemon as a Role Model of shamelessness. Also heard that Dave McClure has been proudly named "the worst-dressed angel of Silicon Valley". Never talked to him but follow a bit what he does and he seems like a very cool guy.

3) Get away from people who care too much about their appearance and what other people think.
Best way is to stay away from these people, because they are always the one who wants you to conform. I don't say don't be friend with them, just don't put them in your inner circle of people you take advices from.

4) Listen to Brene Brown speech

http://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_listening_to_shame.html

What about you? What are your most shameful moments, how do you deal with shame? I'd love to hear your tricks~

Later I will write about my experience of how I use the fact that being a women I am allowed to be vulnerable according to society standards and how I can get unfair advantages^^.
If the system is unperfect/stupid… use it until you change it!

About Carole (code name 烤肉)

I work in tech since 2008, moved from Reunion island to Paris, Beijing, San Francisco and ended up in Berlin in 2014.
This entry was posted in Being a woman, Being an entrepreneur, Values and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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