Social scientist Brené Brown has ignited a global conversation on courage, vulnerability, shame, and worthiness. Her pioneering work uncovered a profound truth: Vulnerability—the willingness to show up and be seen with no guarantee of outcome—is the only path to more love, belonging, creativity, and joy. But living a brave life is not always easy: We are, inevitably, going to stumble and fall.
It is the rise from falling that Brown takes as her subject in Rising Strong. As a grounded theory researcher, Brown has listened as a range of people—from leaders in Fortune 500 companies and the military to artists, couples in long-term relationships, teachers, and parents—shared their stories of being brave, falling, and getting back up. She asked herself, What do these people with strong and loving relationships, leaders nurturing creativity, artists pushing innovation, and clergy walking with people through faith and mystery have in common? The answer was clear: They recognize the power of emotion and they’re not afraid to lean in to discomfort.
- – Entrepreneurs struggling with a fear of failure
- – Team leaders looking for new ways to improve communication
- – Individuals seeking guidance in dealing with disappointment, resentment and guilt
You may be someone who looks at Rising Strong and says, “oh, that’s not really for me….” Translation: I don’t read or need that self-help stuff, give me a good novel and go away. But Brené Brown isn’t a spiritual guru, or someone who’s risen from the ashes to tell us how to live our lives. She’s a researcher. And Rising Strong isn’t some feel-good-get-over-it regimen; it’s more investigative reporting on the common denominators of people who whole-heartedly get back up and go another round after getting their asses handed to them in big and small ways. In her straightforward Texan voice, Brown sets the table for us to get curious about life’s sticky moments and invites us to serve ourselves a plate of what she’s learned in over a decade of research. I don’t know about you, but I’m not trying to be famous or come up with a cure that will change the world, I just want to live happily and keep getting back in the arena whether I’ve been rocked on my heels, knocked to my knees, or gone face down in the dirt. For my money, seeing how I can do that better is worth reading about. – Seira Wils
Dr. Brené Brown is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work. She has spent the past twelve years studying vulnerability, courage, worthiness, and shame. Her groundbreaking research has been featured on PBS, NPR, CNN, The Washington Post, and The New York Times. Brené’s 2010 TEDxHouston talk, The Power of Vulnerability, is one of the top ten most viewed TED talks on TED.com, with approximately 6 million viewers. Additionally, Brené gave the closing talk at the 2012 TED conference where she talked about shame, courage, and innovation.
Quotes of Brené Brow:
- – “Compassionate people ask for what they need. They say no when they need to, and when they say yes, they mean it. They’re compassionate because their boundaries keep them out of resentment.”
- – “Vulnerability is not winning or losing; it’s having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome. Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage.”
- – “Just because someone isn’t willing or able to love us, it doesn’t mean that we are unlovable.”
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