Ripples #832: Allowing Others In.
May 4, 2015
Spiritual growth is characterized by
the capacity to allow others into your heart.
-Tijn Touber, shared by Terry in Oak Creek, WI
A blessed thing it is for any man or woman to have a friend,
one human soul whom we can trust utterly,
who knows the best and worst of us,
and who loves us in spite of all our faults.
-Charles Kingsley, shared by Nick in Indiana
It isn’t always easy to let someone into your heart to develop an authentic connection with them. Sometimes it is our personality that prefers to keep emotions at bay and connections at arms length; other times it is the norms we picked up from our families, communities, and/or cultures that dictates how close we get to those around us.
It is also true that past hurts sometimes create protective coatings to safeguard us; and while they have incredibly noble aspirations of preventing us from being hurt, they also unfortunately keep out empathy and compassion that is being extended by those with noble intentions and worthy goals: they want to love us, but we are sometimes too afraid to let them in.
The first step to allowing others into the sacred and softer places in our heart is to notice both the benefits and costs of keeping people at a distance, and seeing if there aren’t some small risks we could take to let someone in just a bit. Might you be willing to experiment this week: sharing a bit of personal information with a colleague you’ve spoken with several times, or opening up to a neighbor or acquaintance that you’ve known superficially for years? I’m in if you are!
The Ripples Guy
P.S. I was inspired to assemble this week’s Ripples by a recent encounters with a few remarkable people who are taking courageous steps to emerge from their protective casings and seek the healing embrace of vulnerability and connectedness. I extend my kudos to them, and an invitation to the rest of us to allow others in this week.