The Smallest Moments of Vulnerability

By Adam J. Pearson

Friendships and relationships
Are strengthened
Or broken
By how we handle
The smallest moments
Of vulnerability.

In these small moments,
As a result of our actions,
Trust and connection
Grow like lotuses
Or wilt like unwatered lilies.

When we meet vulnerability with care, support, and encouragement,
We show that we can be trusted, that we are safe,
And relationships strengthen.

But if we respond to emotional exposure with apathy, criticism, and dismissal,
We reveal we cannot be trusted with the rawness of vulnerability,
And connections weaken.

We reach out to those who honour our vulnerability,
And pull away from those who treat it carelessly.
In this way, rapport is forged like steel
Or dissolved like dissipating smoke.

Being mindful of how we respond
To small moments of vulnerability
Is the heart of all successful relationships;
Small moments add up to big effects,
For relationships are but collections of small moments,

Love, trust, connection, and life itself
Can be tremendously strong,
Resilient, and powerful,
But are vulnerable at their roots–
Water them and watch them grow.


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