After deciding that I’m a little bit too old to be throwing tantrums, having bouts of unexplained tremendous sadness for myself and not really understanding why I am the way I am, I’ve opted to read some “personal growth” literature in the hope that suddenly everything will become really clear.
I’d like to really understand the little things I do such as:
why I say something stupid then think about it for the rest of my life? or, why I am desperate to make friends but so long as I don’t have to leave the flat and talk to a real life human because they are terrifying.? And maybe even why I make huge lists of things I can do to improve my health and body and decide to ignore everything on it.
Brené Browns book has forced me to look inward at the reason why I do things that inevitably leave me unhappy, rather than blaming external factors which by the way is a heck of a lot easier. The book advises that you DIG deeper, by:
Getting Deliberate: By stopping and taking control. Be aware of what you are doing and set your intentions, mindfulness and meditation can help wiht this, Brene also mentions prayer but this isn’t something I’ll take away from the book, although prayer has heavy religious connotations, it doesn’t necessarily have to be a prayer to a god.
Getting Inspired: Find inspiration to make new choices and change things up a bit.
Getting Going: DO THE THINGS! Start actively not being cruel to others and then notice how you feel less judged and more secure than you did before, realise now that you don’t have to “get more muscle” “earn more money” “buy more makeup” to be worthy of the love of others.
Brené goes through so many topics including self worth, compassion authenticity of the self (something I struggle with a lot) and the book really starts to make you consider yourself in different ways almost from the outside looking in. I’d be a liar if I was to tell you that this book didn’t at the very least cause me to think more carefully about how I think, it has begun to open a door in my mind that I had firmly bolted shut, the door that had “SHAME” carved deep into it.
In a world that makes me feel like my body is wrong, my career isn’t important enough and my thoughts and feelings are stupid and inconvenient, this book has patted my gently on the shoulder and reminded me that I am only human.
If you are not interested in reading the book, Brené does an excellent TedTalk that summarises a lot of her research into vulnerability and shame.
You can watch this here: