Is showing weakness ok? Have you ever been among the people you’re trying to grow and had a serious break down? Have you ever been slinging snot and crying uncontrollably in front of people whom you’re trying to grow and felt embarrassed feeling like you never should’ve broken down the way you did?
If you feel displaying weakness among the garden you cultivate is wrong, I’m going to challenge you. There are three benefits to displaying weakness among those you work to grow.
How we deal with weakness is an example for other people whom we are responsible for growing. It shows them how they can also endure weakness. We want to show strength for our students, kids, and mentees. How we deal with weakness is an example to other people because it shows them how they can can also endure weakness.
Growing people who show weakness give the people who they’re growing an example of what it’s like to deal with and go through difficult moments. It’s not only the job of the person who grows other people to be an example of strength they also must show others how to walk through weakness.
Weakness can increases our connection with the people whom grow. When a growing person shows their vulnerability they show that they are susceptible to harm. They show they are susceptible to damage, they are susceptible to the things in life that most of us like to shove to the back of the garden of our life, behind the trees so that no one can see them. The reason why we show vulnerability is because it actually increases connection. I have the strongest connection with some of the students with whom I shared my weakness. I talk to many students years after they’re out of my classroom, in part, because I talked not as one in authority all the time but as one who possessed weakness openly .
When teachers, parents, and mentors show their weakness, others have the chance to bring them some support. This is support they actually need. Sometimes growing people need support with the very things that they are tending to. If the gardener tended a garden and the fruit tree never bore fruit s/he would wonder the use of growing that fruit tree. The gardener gardens so the garden will produce fruit enough to eat. The teacher, parent, or mentor tends to their garden with the hope their learners would support them in some way. When a growing person shows weakness it gives the garden the chance to support the gardener.
In conclusion, growing people who grow people are not always strong. At times they are weak and, at times, it’s ok for them to show it because it will serve as an example for those in her/his care, create stronger teacher/student, parent/child, or mentor/mentee relationships and allow the one in authority to receive much needed support.
Featured image by Aarón Blanco Tejedor from Unsplash.