So, I am one of those people that’s constantly trying to improve. I’m always looking for ways to be better or to do better …with everything in life. And I’m sure that sometimes I’m too hard on myself. But having goals really fuels my soul and gives me purpose so this book was perfect for me in every way.
Daring Greatly is by Brene Brown and I absolutely loved this book. If you haven’t read it, I promise it will change your life! And I know that sounds crazy but really, my perspectives have been changed so much after reading this! In the book, Brene talks about shame, guilt and vulnerability. And how having ‘the courage to be vulnerable transforms the way we live, love, parent and lead’. … I marked SO many pages in this book that it’s hard to know where to start!
But I think the biggest two takeaways for me were about shame vs guilt and realizing that vulnerability is about letting go and showing up. … let me explain.
Brene Brown talks about shame and guilt so clearly and to the point that it’s crazy I haven’t noticed the different until now! She says that after doing something bad or making a wrong decision, shame is saying ‘I’m a terrible person, I’m an idiot, etc. etc.’ But guilt is saying ‘I can’t believe I did that, I made a wrong decision’. And this was mind-blowing for me! Especially in my own life and in my relationships with others. I mean, how many times have you been driving and someone cut you off? … I always think, ‘they’re so dumb’, not ‘that was really dumb of them’. And that’s definitely a surface level relationship considering you’ll probably never see that person. But, that’s our culture. We tend to blame others or even ourselves for everything instead of realizing that sometimes people just make mistakes.
I mean, I make mistakes all the time. But instead of realizing that it was just that, a mistake, I beat myself up for it and think, ‘why can’t I do this?, why can’t I just relax?, why is it so easy for them?,’ And then the comparison game starts and that’s never good. … There’s one phrase in this book that I keep thinking about over and over. And it says, ‘Done is better than perfect’. And when I first read that I disagreed with it immediately. I am such a perfectionist. I like things in order and done the right way. … But the more I’ve been going through life on a daily basis, I’ve realized how true that phrase actually is. Being vulnerable is not perfect. Far from it in fact. And I think sometimes that’s why I struggle with it so much. Being vulnerable is about letting ourselves been seen, exactly how we are. .. not how we hope to be or pretend to be. But reality. With all our emotions and struggles and fears and hopes and dreams.
Last week I shared a blog post that was really hard for me to publish. It was about struggles and how I’m in the middle of it right now. And it doesn’t seem like there will be an end any time soon. And it’s scary. And it’s hard to share. But isn’t that what we all seek for? We want connection. We want to know that someone else is struggling too. That we’re not the only one. And that our feelings are justified. Just the other day, I was talking to a couple other moms who are feeling similar to me. And I felt so comforted. Not because I wanted them to feel bad or because I wanted them to struggle. But because it meant that I wasn’t alone. That I could connect with them and feel like I belonged. Feel like I was loved. And loved for where I am in my life right now. I mean.. just think about your kids. Isn’t this what they need too? And how often do we just tell them to hold it in. .. I feel like I’m constantly trying to avoid tantrums with my 2 year old. But, she is learning SO MUCH right now. I’m sure it’s crazy overwhelming for her and when mom says she can’t have candy or a movie, or she needs to wear her seatbelt and not run without shoes on, she gets upset. And it’s OKAY! It’s okay to be overwhelmed and to not know exactly how to fix it right away. But society has taught us to hold it in. To not deal with our emotions. Society has engrained in us that we need to be prettier, skinnier, healthier, happier, busier. That we need to buy more, read more, serve more, think more, do more. And that who we are in the moment is never enough. …
Being vulnerable is the first thing we look for in others… So, why do we not see the value of it in ourselves? …
Reading this book changed a lot of perspectives for me. It helped me realize why I always feel like I need to be connected. Why I always seek for love and belonging. And why we all need that! It helped me realize that while I should still seek to improve, I am enough right now too. And that sometimes, probably most times, we are all too hard on ourselves … and on others. So, in my opinion, the world could use a little more vulnerability. I know I can. … And that’s what you’re going to start seeing a lot more of from me. The real me. The vulnerable me. Because I want to connect and belong and love. … And I’m sure you do too.