The Risks and Rewards of Being Vulnerable | Allan Kehler

It took me a long time to be comfortable talking publicly about my issues of addictions, mental illness, and sexual abuse.

I used to underestimate the power of a story, and its unique ability to connect with others.

Last week I received the e-mail below, and it served as a great reminder that few things are as sacred or as powerful as someone’s story.

With her permission, I would like to share it with you.


This is Sarah, a participant at your workshop.

Your message changed the way I view my current struggles with depression and anxiety. You showed me that just as your hardships have enhanced your effectiveness at addressing others’ suffering, my struggles are offering me these same gifts.

Your openness about your past difficulties gave me the courage to speak openly in your workshop. The perception of my depression and anxiety is shifting from something that is hindering my life to something that is contributing to my life.  

Thank you for your positive impact on me.


I am sharing this with you because Sarah made me aware of the fact that when we allow ourselves to be vulnerable, it allows others to do the same.

I understand feelings of shame, fear, and vulnerability that can surface when we begin to share our experiences with others.

However, I also understand freedom, rewards, and positive impact. 

Keep talking my friends.

“What’s stronger than a broken man who has the courage to rebuild himself? It’s time to redefine what it means to be strong.”

- Allan Kehler