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Building security through insecurities: The what I be project

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Do you remember the last time you felt insecure? What was it like? What did you feel? Did you try to hide your insecurity so that no one knows about it? Well, put it on the table for the next 5 minutes, cause we’re going to talk about imperfections, vulnerability and courage.

Living in a society shaped by religious prejudices, fears, Hollywood stars and Photoshop edited pictures, we have become conditioned to hide our imperfections, to feel inappropriate if we are imperfect, unacceptable and to develop issues. We try so hard to avoid to be judged but act judgmentally. Every. Single. Time. That’s why we fear it so much. However, this is more like a collective pattern that we took over rather than a conscious choice.

A researcher of shame and vulnerability, Brene Brown, said that allowing ourselves to be seen with our imperfections is the way to courage.

“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.”
Brené BrownDaring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead

We all have insecurities, whether it’s about our past, body image, career, sexuality or something else. Merriam Webster Dictionary  defines insecurity as:

 ” not being confident about yourself or your ability to do things well : nervous and uncomfortable” . 

 The What I be project:

Photographer Steve Rosenfield had the idea to “talk” about insecurities and courage in his “The what I be project”. He decided to photograph people exposing their innermost fears and insecurities by writing them on their bodies. The tag line of the campaign is “I am not my………….”  and its message is that “whatever my insecurity is, it doesn’t define me as a person”. He says that “It is to spread awareness on what people go through due to society’s paved roads. These are serious issues that some of us can live with, but most battle on a day to day basis.”

Rosenfield started the project in 2010 and gathered a huge collection of pictures with people recognizing their insecurities. He organized them in categories such as: anxiety, body image, career, jealousy, loneliness, men, sexuality, trust. Take a look at these pictures and stay for while with them.

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Sources: What I be project  , Brene Brown 



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