“What we know matters, but who we are matters more. Being rather than knowing requires showing up and letting ourselves be seen. It requires us to dare greatly, to be vulnerable. The first step of that journey is understanding where we are, what we’re up against and where we need to go. I think we can best do that by examining our pervasive “Never enough” culture.”
So begins the excellent and heart felt book from research undertaken by Brene Brown, a research professor who has spent the past ten years studying vulnerability, courage, authenticity, and shame. She spent the first five years of her decade-long study focusing on shame and empathy, and is now using that work to explore a concept that she calls Wholeheartedness.
She poses the questions:
How do we learn to embrace our vulnerabilities and imperfections so that we can engage in our lives from a place of authenticity and worthiness? How do we cultivate the courage, compassion, and connection that we need to recognize that we are enough – that we are worthy of love, belonging, and joy?
So what has this got to do with career transitions?
In studying, researching and talking to participants about career transition, the key issue /emotion and block that always comes up is fear. It manifests itself in comments such as
- What will people think?
- I feel powerless to move on
- I need certainty before I can transition
- I have a lifestyle to maintain
In the end if we are worth the effort of creating disruption in our lives as a means to get through the other side to a career that does touch our sweet spot. This will mean we not only need to be vulnerable but will need to jump in head first and embrace vulnerability.
Further in exploring the myths we tell ourselves regarding vulnerability, this feeds the fears that will allow uncertainty to prevail, limiting our career transition decisions.
In response to the myth that vulnerability reflects weakness, Brown responds with ‘Vulnerability is neither good nor bad’.  It’s the core of all emotions and to feel is to be vulnerable. At its heart vulnerability is ‘uncertainty, risk and emotional exposure’.
“Of most significance is that reality that if we close off our career options out of fear that the costs are too high then we walk away from the very things that may give us meaning and purpose. This is directly applicable to the way we approach the fear of change and transition. And equally it asks us to consider facing another fear of asking for support. Connecting to tribes, communities and stepping out in an effort to network, is about embracing our fears of rejection and failure. One of the best quotes from an interviewee is “when you shut down vulnerability , you shut out opportunity”. 
 Brene Brown Daring Greatly- How the courage to be vulnerable transforms the way we live, love, parent and lead. 2012 page 16
 Brene Brown Daring Greatly Page 33
 Brene Brown Daring Greatly page 34
 Brene Brown Daring Greatly page 208