Because I love to read, I have found that I am reading, listening and sharing book quotes, reviews, and ideas from novels constantly. I find that I am doing all of these things with five or six novels at a time. I truly don't know how I do this, but I somehow do. Because of this excessive reading habit (can I call it that?) I find that I can only post some of my favorite novels, or novels that truly stuck out to me positively or negatively on this blog. You can see the other novels that I am reading on my GoodReads, but I only post the ones that stick in my brain on here. Otherwise I would be posting about books three times a week. And, let's be honest, I highly doubt that you want to only read book reviews on this blog.
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I posted this video on my blog a few years ago and that is when I sort of fell in love with Brene Brown. She is a researcher who studies shame and vulnerability, which I think is amazing. Side note: I am a little envious of this. I would absolutely love to do research with her on this subject. I find it surprisingly fascinating. She became "big" after this awesome TED Talk. I read the novel "The Gifts of Imperfection" a year ago and I may or may not have drove in my car and cried as I listened. It spoke right to my "emotional" being and nodded my head along as I listened to it. It spoke to me, okay? :)
Because of my love for her first novel, I had to pick up "Daring Greatly." And, yes, I loved it just as much. "Daring Greatly" is filled with information on how to combat shame and become vulnerable, authentic, and courageous - not just in romantic relationships, but at work and with your children as well (and for me, even as a teacher!). I have always struggled with vulnerability, but I loved how Brene Brown explained that we can't live fully and wholeheartedly without it. This is, honestly, a must read for anyone who feels a bit closed off from the world and/or the best parts of themselves. Personally, I loved her "Gifts of Imperfection" novel a little bit more. I think, personally, it resonated with me on a deeper level because of my own issues. But both of these novels are wonderful.
I tweeted this novel while listening/reading it (I did both) throughout. I wanted to share some of my favorite quotes from my tweets and otherwise. Now, I feel like I could write down half of this book in quotes, but, alas, I can only choose a few that stuck with me (or, well, that I had enough time to write down ;) ).
*Wholehearted living is about engaging in our lives from a place of worthiness. It means cultivating the courage, compassion, and connection to wake up in the morning and think, No matter what gets done and how much is left undone, I am enough. It's going to bed at night thinking, Yes, I am imperfect and vulnerable and sometimes afraid, but that doesn't change the truth that I am also brave and worthy of love and belonging.
*Empathy can be spoken without saying a word.
*We like to see and feel vulnerability from others, but we don't like to feel it or show it ourselves. Can you value your own vulnerability like you can in others? Admitting this does not mean that you are weak.
*To grow up is to accept vulnerability. To be alive is to be vulnerable.
*Love is a form of vulnerability.
*Vulnerability needs boundaries!!!!!!
*For me, and for many of us, our first waking thought of the day is "I didn't get enough sleep." The next one is "I don't have enough time." Whether true or not, that thought of not enough occurs to us automatically before we even think to question or examine it. We spend most of the hours and the days of our lives hearing, explaining, complaining, or worrying about what we don't have enough of.... Before we even sit up in bed, before our feet touch the floor, we're already inadequate, already behind, already losing, already lacking something. And by the time we go to bed at night, our minds are racing with a litany of what we didn't get, or didn't get done, that day. We go to sleep burdened by those thoughts and wake up to that reverie of lack.... This internal condition of scarcity, this mind-set of scarcity, lives at the very heart of our jealousies, our prejudice, and our arguments with life....
*One way to think about the three components of scarcity and how they influence culture is to reflect upon the following questions. As you're reading the questions, its' helpful to keep in mind any culture or social system that you're a part of, whether your classroom, your family, your community, or maybe your work team:
1. Shame: Is fear of ridicule and belittling used to manage people and/or to keep people in line? Is self-worth tied to achievement, productivity, or compliance? Are blaming and finger-pointing norms? Are put-downs and name-calling rampant? What about favoritism? Is perfectionism an issue?
2. Comparison: Healthy competition can be beneficial, but is there constant overt or covert comparing and ranking? Has creativity been suffocated? Are people held to one narrow standard rather than acknowledged for their unique gifts and contributions? Is there an ideal way of being or one form of talent that is used as measurement of everyone else's worth?
3. Disengagement: Are people afraid to take risks or try new things? Is it easier to stay quiet than to share stories, experiences, and ideas? Does it feel as if no one is really paying attention or listening? Is everyone struggling to be seen and heard?" (p. 28)
*Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage.
"Give me the courage to show up and let myself be seen."
"The vulnerability journey is not the kind of journey we can make alone. We need support. We need folks who will let us try on new ways of being without judging us. We need a hand to pull us up off the ground when we get kicked down in the arena (and if we live a courageous life, that will happen)."
Sierra's Other Book Reviews: A Man Called Ove // Go Set a Watchman // These Is My Words // Intuitive Eating // Happier at Home // Happiness Project // Wild // Elizabeth Smart: My Story
Have you read this book? What were your thoughts on it?