Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Daring Greatly

“Our willingness to own and engage with our vulnerability determines the depth of our courage and the clarity of our purpose”. Brene Brown

I don’t know if you’ve had this experience but I’ve been running into myself lately, into my own limitations both personally and professionally.  I’ve seen other people who’ve had the same experience and yet been unable to change and that scares me.  What if I’m also not able to change?

 But I shake myself, once and even twice if needed. And I search out, often without great aim, but certainly persistence, in a of pinball-like fashion, born of movement,  I get closer to on track. For example, Daring Greatly by Brené Brown is a book I stumbled upon through Twitter.  I read about the new book, then I forwarded the link to a friend, she wrote me back having engaged with the material, and I doubled down and watched Brené’s TED talk.

What I read and watched as a result has helped me understand why some of my approaches fall flat. I’ve been trying to show up bulletproof and perfect, as if that were even possible (lol), but as near there as humanly possible.  However, even if I could bring my perfect bullet proof self to a meeting, that’s not what people want according to Brown:

Perfect and bulletproof are seductive, but they don’t exist in the human experience. We must walk into the arena, whatever it may be – a new relationship, an important meeting, our creative process, or a difficult family conversation – with courage and the willingness to engage. Rather than sitting on the sidelines and hurling judgment and advice, we must dare to show up and let ourselves be seen. This is vulnerability. This is daring greatly.

Of all of these things, "daring to show up and let ourselves be seen" speaks most to me. Brené redefines the question “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?” to a different angle: “What’s worth doing even if you fail?” She writes that "Our willingness to won and engage with our vulnerability determines the depth of our courage and the clarity of our purpose." I don't have answers yet but these are great questions. I hope you'll take a moment to explore this work as well and join me in understanding how we can dare greatly.

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