Lately I've been very curious about what makes someone great. I would define greatness as being happy and living your truth. I'm curious about what separates people who are happy and those who are not. I recently attended a lecture on happiness and it was packed. The speaker said that all everyone wants is to be happy. I would agree.

More and more, I'm learning that our happiness is largely connected to, well, connection. And when I think about it, I feel the most amount of joy when I connect with people.

Tunic: Vintage Market, London UK. Jeans: Urban Planet. Boots: Dr. Martens. Sunglasses: Camden Market. 

I really like how BrenĂ© Brown, a research professor who studies vulnerability, worded this in her 
TED Talk: 

Connection is what gives purpose and meaning to our lives. It's neurobiologically how we're wired.

In a world where we're hearing people say catching feelings like they're germs, we often lose sight of our own biology, and the fact that we're hard-wired to need each other to survive. We're supposed to feel feelings. We're supposed to need each other. In order to allow for deep connection, though, we have to allow ourselves to be seen. And that can be really scary. 

When we put ourselves out there — whether through our words, our art, our music or business, we are opening the door for potential criticism and judgment. It also means we're exposing ourselves to answers and opposing views, which is a lot more fulfilling than stagnating in the comfort of what we already know. 

I spend a lot of time listening to music from people I admire, watching documentaries and listening to podcasts that feature people who have overcome incredible obstacles to stay true to themselves. I feel so inspired by people who have dared to dream, to go beyond their fears, and stand up for something they believe in. This helps me stay in a headspace that's conducive to me achieving my dreams. 

I'm almost always listening to music. The artist I've consistently come back to listening to lately has been SZA. One of her songs in particular made it onto my most listened to in 2017 list. It's called Supermodel and while I must've listened to it over a hundred times, it recently inspired a train of thought that inspired this post. 

Why I can't stay alone just by myself? 
Wish I was comfortable just with myself
But I need you, but I need you, but I need you

These lyrics convey such deep vulnerability. I started thinking about why I love her music so much and that's exactly it. She's not afraid to say what so many of us are often thinking but would never dare to speak. She's tapped into a level of vulnerability in her lyrics that I'm not even ready for but need so badly. 

It's clear that SZA's vulnerability has contributed to her success in music and life. This got me thinking about vulnerability and how it can be used to help us connect deeper, feel less alone, and be happier. 

Opening up and letting people see who we truly are is a gift. Sharing a part of you with someone is sort of like a sacrifice that you make for them. It's a risk that almost always brings reward.


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