Ron Macklin & Michelle Mosolgo


Episode 37: Vulnerability

Michelle opens by giving the definition of ‘vulnerability’ from the Oxford Dictionary. She then asks Ron how he holds ‘vulnerability.’

  • Ron agrees with the definition, but says that it holds more power than what those words truly mean.
  • Being vulnerable is sharing the stories inside your head that describe what your fears are, or are weak.
  • He continues by saying that the power comes from the fact that nobody wants to admit that they are weak or afraid, but when someone starts that conversation, it then gives everyone else a place to relate.
  • He says that relating to others, building that connection, is a way for people to not feel alone, and build a deep level of trust.
  • Michelle then describes her take on the word ‘vulnerability’ and what it means to her.

Michelle then asks Ron if there is any particular story where vulnerability changed for him or someone else.

  • Ron dives into a couple of stories about both others’ vulnerabilities, as well as his own.
  • He then describes how being vulnerable with his wife opened up another level of connection that he had not had with her before.
  • Ron continues by saying how speaking it out loud allowed him to really truly evaluate the stories.
  • He notes that the more vulnerable he is, the easier it is to connect with people.
  • Michelle relays a story that was the most impactful story around vulnerability, which is when the CEO of the Fortune 50 company she used to work at shared how lonely he was in his new role of CEO.
  • She then continues by detailing how that level of vulnerability not only changed the culture of the company, but also caused her to shift her career path.

Ron asks Michelle what steps she takes to go about being vulnerable.

  • Michelle describes a story where she had to be vulnerable, which started as a physical vulnerability when she was pregnant, and shares how that led her to the emotional vulnerability of admitting when she needed help.
  • She then continues by describing how this changed her work environment as well when she was vulnerable with her team about her personal life.

Michelle follows the same line of thinking, asking Ron how the space of being vulnerable opened up to him.

  • Ron says that once he noticed the connections being made between being vulnerable and others dropping their shields.
  • He relays his strategy to incorporate vulnerable stories into conversations, and the impact it has on his relationships with others.
  • Ron continues by describing what happens after he shares a vulnerable story, and how others often react to them.

Michelle plays off of Ron’s answer asking him if there has ever been a time where he was vulnerable and regrets it.

  • Ron recalls times that he has been made fun of after being vulnerable, and the story that he now holds when that happens.
  • Michelle thinks back on her own stories of vulnerability and how she often returns it back to herself on how she is being judged afterwards. 
  • Ron continues this line of thinking by reminding himself, and the listeners, that everyone is scared, and reacts differently to that fear.
  • Ron and Michelle discuss how to handle the differences in reactions, realizing the differences between their own stories and others stories.

Ron concludes by giving a challenge to himself, Michelle, and the listeners of the podcast.

  • What is it that really scares you to be vulnerable about?
  • Can you be vulnerable about it?
  • Can you surrender to being enough?
  • What would your world be like if everyone you knew was vulnerable like that, talking about their real fears, and got help from one another?
  • Is that a world you want?

Join us to hear how understanding the idea of “self talk” — and what you can do about it — could change your relationships and life for the better.


Episode Summary


In this episode of “The Story in Your Head,” Ron and Michelle discuss what it means to be vulnerable. They share personal stories of times when they were vulnerable, and how it affected the relationships with the people they shared those stories with. They discuss the hidden power of being vulnerable, and issue a challenge for themselves and the listeners.