I think this comes from a conversation we had about vulnerability being a good way to create a relationship with your audience. It's a great way to do that. It's also probably the hardest way to do that personally, because opening yourself up and being vulnerable is, by nature, difficult.
Look, if that's not natural for you, I don't think that it's going to work for you. I think you have to look at yourself and say, "Am I hesitant to be vulnerable, or do I feel incapable of doing that?" There might be wounds that are too fresh that you can't talk about, there may be things that you don't yet totally understand about yourself that you can't talk about. That's okay. You do not in any way have to open yourself up completely to your audience. You don't have to do it at all.
It's just a arrow in the quiver, it's just a way to build a relationship with an audience. I wouldn't say that I am ever vulnerable on A Drink with James. I'm not really telling you all anything about my life, I'm not sharing any of my big struggles. I feel like I have some sort of relationship with the people that watch the show, and I think that I have heard that that's felt from the other side and that's done without vulnerability.
Again, I think it's important to know anyone you're getting advice from that not everything works for all people, and you have to find something that's going to work for you. I think that a core tenant of the show is something we've talked about all the time, it's just trying things. Doing something once doesn't mean you have to do it a hundred or a thousand times. Starting to peel back the layers and starting to show your audience a little bit behind the curtain of who you are, what you're feeling, what you're struggling with, that is a process that can be unrolled slowly over months or years.
It doesn't have to happen all at once. You don't have to say, "Guys, I want to share the 10 biggest insecurities I have about myself." That's not how you have to get into it. That may not even work. Start slow and if it doesn't feel natural, or if it doesn't make you happy, or it's not helping you in any way, then I wouldn't do it.
I think that the argument for being vulnerable is probably that by opening yourself up, you can realize that other people have been through the same thing. That by sharing your experiences you can start to build a community around you that also shared those experiences or feel a certain amount of empathy for you about those experiences, but by no means do you have to do it.
This is not an equation. I think we've said often on the show that like this is not a thing where you say, "Then I get to do this and this comes out." You could feel like you're being vulnerable, and they could just say, "I don't care. I'm here for pretty pictures, not your life story." Each count is different, each life is different, and it's best to do it if you feel like works for you.Yes, I'd say probably the worst thing you can have, other than like open mic stand-up comedy is, is forced vulnerability. That's going to seem not great.
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