Dr. Yukari’s Listening Lounge #8-2, The Power of Vulnerability

[ Dr. Yukari’s Listening Lounge ]

Consultations will be available to discuss your challenges and worries faced in daily life involving family, relationships, anxiety, stress, grief & loss.

The first 2 sessions are free of charge.  Contact us at the address below for any questions or to reserve your 60-minute zoom session.

Email: info@honolulumyohoji.org

Guided by the hope of St. Nichiren, we continue to work towards a peaceful society.  Honolulu Myohoji Mission collaborates with Psychologist Dr. Yukari Kunisue, a trained and experienced therapeutic life coach, to offer a safe online space: Dr. Yukari’s Listening Lounge



When I first read Brene Brown’s book The Power of Vulnerability and listened to her TedTalk (https://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_the_power_of_vulnerability), this image of a scared little girl came to mind. This mental image of a scared child was a part of myself that I’ve tried so hard to hide from friends, colleagues, and even myself. I felt that I needed to ignore this little girl within myself to project a strong and capable version of myself.


Within the Asian culture, it is common to feel a sense of disappointment if you are not living up to the standards that are set in society. I was often ashamed that I could not abide by my parents’ wishes to stay closer and take care of them. I even disappointed myself after being unable to give birth to a healthy baby despite the time, money, and energy that was invested into fertility treatments, which led to me eventually losing my marriage. By this time, I was hiding from my friends that I was struggling with my career, finances, and the way my life was headed. Brene Brown’s words highlighted the fact that I was unhappy because I was simply unable to face why I was feeling unhappy. I wrongly found myself blaming my circumstances for my unhappiness.


By this point, I tried to imagine that the little girl was sitting behind a locked door waiting for someone. Perhaps, an older version of myself would be the one to let the girl out who was probably not sure why she was there in the first place. She must have been more scared than I, who had the power to unlock the door in the first place. 


In order to reach her through the door, there are several stages that I must go through. When I am able to admit that I am not perfect nor cool and am full of weaknesses and feelings of being a “fraud”, I am touching the door. When I recognize that it was not other people but myself who is responsible for what has happened in my life, I turn the doorknob and am opening the door. When I recognize the pain in my own heart, I am talking to the little girl to persuade her to come out. I would say to her,


“It is safe here. There is no need to hide anymore. I am a bigger person now and I can be with you. I am so sorry to have kept you in the dark closet for a long time.”


To this she responded,


“You have found me! I am the power of vulnerability.”