It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; . . . who at best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.
When I got the opportunity to read Dr. Brené Brown’s latest book, Daring Greatly, I was thrilled. Over the past two years, I have had the pleasure of hearing her speak on two separate occasions. I knew this book was going to be a great read because I have heard what she has to say and she is one of the most genuine speakers I have ever heard. Her work on shame, shame resilience, fear, vulnerability and daring greatly resonated with me in an authentic way, I could not put the book down.
The above quote by Theodore Roosevelt is an excerpt from a speech given at the Sorbonne in Paris, France in 1910. The quote encompasses the theme of the book that through being vulnerable requires that we take risk, in spite of our fears, we give ourselves the opportunities to make real connections with others, bringing purpose and meaning to our lives. Vulnerability is not weakness, she argues. In fact, it is one of the greatest acts of courage. We need to put ourselves out there, even if we might fail and be vulnerable. We need to be vulnerable in our relationships and in every facet of our lives if we want to be connected with others. She examines our innate human need to be loved and to have a sense of belonging. Having a sense of worthiness gives us the ability to be vulnerable and take the risk of getting hurt, but in the end that result can give us that connectedness that allows us to feel loved and a sense that we belong. According to Dr. Brown:
Vulnerability is about sharing our feelings and our experiences with people who have earned the right to hear them. Being vulnerable and open is mutual and an integral part of the trust-building process.
The book struck such a chord with me on so many levels. I am in sort of a cross-roads right now and I want to be courageous through this phase of life. It is a scary prospect. We all have those critics that tell us we aren’t enough, but our biggest critic sometimes lives within ourselves. We need to take the risk, EVEN IF we may fail. That is courage. I found myself nodding my head in agreement, taking notes, dog earmarking pages, and feeling inspired to truly live my life daring greatly.
The book was excellent! I am an even bigger fan of Dr. Brown than I was before.
Disclaimer: This is a paid review for BlogHer Book Club but the opinions expressed are my own. I was compensated for my review, and received a copy of Daring Greatly HOWEVER, I only recommend products and/or services I personally believe in.