(First of all, I really hope no one thinks I am being serious with this title here. It’s a massive joke.)
I recently started a podcast with two of my dear friends. We released our 2nd episode early this week, and have had over 400 people listen. It’s something that has been on my bucket-list for a while now, and everything just kind of fell into place with these girls and their brains and our chemistry. I made a joke during our 1st episode that if no one even listened, I wouldn’t care because I was having so much fun with these girls. That statement is probably…60% true.
Anyway, this whole podcast sha-bang is a very interesting thing because I am essentially recording conversations I have about controversial things or embarrassing things or silly things with my friends and broadcasting them to the world. It’s weird, because yes, my friends and people who know me are a portion of our listeners – but there are also people who only know either Emily or Erika (my two brilliant co-hosts). There are also people who do not know any of us, but were referred to our podcast through a friend or something like that. I didn’t really give this too much thought before hitting record that first day. It was kind of just something I wanted to do – so I did it.
I was chatting with a friend the other day who mentioned that she’d never do a podcast because she’d never want to share that much with anyone other than her friends. I don’t know what “that much” means, but she might be referring to the joke I made about being “super single” or the fact that I revealed that I would totally kiss a gay guy. Or maybe it’s the fact that I pretty much have no filter of any form, and say whatever comes to mind whenever it comes to my mind. Maybe that’s what she means. We’re only two episodes in so I haven’t revealed anything too dramatic…but I honestly would not think twice about sharing from my experiences with most things.
I think there’s probably a scale normal people have. Like, “I will talk to _________ about __________ but not __________” and so on. Now, obviously in matters of work/professional life and ministry (so with my high school girls) I have limits because of appropriateness and confidentiality. But with friends and my normal social scene…I am a very, very open book.
As I look at our docket of topics, words like “Purity” and “Politics” and “Feminism” and “Faith” sit glaringly on the page. As someone who has always been a self-proclaimed (and everyone-else-affirmed) over-sharer – you’d think these topics would be easy for me to talk about. In some ways, they are. I’ve shared my story on this blog and with hundreds of people over the course of my life. I’ve talked about politics on Facebook (although, I try not to anymore!) and most people know where I stand (smack dab in the slight-left of center my friends) in the political world. Being a feminist isn’t hard to talk about…because it’s simply just what I am. It’s no different to me than breathing. And faith…I mean…I went to Seminary. I have a whole category for that, folks.
I can be coy and charming about being an “over-sharer” but sometimes I actually wonder if it’s a bad thing. Sometimes I wonder if being open about really serious beliefs I have or parts of my life that are hard is the best thing. I believe that vulnerability is powerful and necessary and transformational. But I know plenty of people that I’d consider vulnerable, that don’t share nearly as much detail about their personal life as I do. Perhaps it’s the curse of being a writer – always having to get words out and on a page before they make sense in my life. Enter this blog. The birthplace and constant home to all my stream-of-consciousness induced over-sharing. Or perhaps it’s the fact that my dad was a pastor while I was growing up and my mom has a background in therapy. We talked a lot about feelings growing up.
Whatever the case may be – I am the girl who isn’t afraid to tell you exactly what I feel and why I feel that way. I’ve always thought that was just a good thing. How could honesty and transparency and vulnerability be a negative thing? I mean, sure, I could see how it could be ANNOYING to some, but downright negative? No way.
In an effort to be more self-reflective, I started to think critically about vulnerability in my own life. What are my intentions with sharing as much as I do? Are there subjects that I should think more before opening up about? Who benefits from hearing my thoughts on ___________________ and ___________________? Am I being open for shock-value and controversy’s sake…or to genuinely be an open and honest person?
The frustrating thing about this blog, dear readers, is I have no answers for you. I’m still thinking through it all. Vulnerability is a huge value of mine, but there is just something I can’t shake about the value of tact and mystery and having something to offer that EVERYONE doesn’t already know about.
I often post blogs with perfect little bows at the end – here are my thoughts and this is how it ends. Butt I need your help with this one.
What are your thoughts about vulnerability? Boundaries on what you talk about and what you don’t talk about? With whom? Does a person’s willingness to share (or propensity to over-share) influence your thoughts about them?
Would love to start a conversation (how blogger-cliche is THAT!) about this because I value your brains and thoughts.