Who is Brené Brown?
While some of us feel as though Brené Brown is a close friend, because of the way her books have shaped us, others are still not quite sure who she is and what all the fuss is about.
If you’re in the second camp, check out episode 43 of the More Than Corporate podcast. In this episode, we go through the way Brené Brown’s work helped her to recover from her lowest point of anxiety, and talk about the three biggest lessons learned from Brown’s work over the years.
- Failure is inevitable
- Understand the place of critics
- Recognize the stories in your head
These three lessons, if we can really internalize them, will bring us to a place where we can live a braver life.
Lessons From Brené Brown TED Talks And From Brené Brown Books
Although all of her work has different focuses, there are three lessons that she teaches us time and time again. Let’s dissect these lessons and then look at a few of her quotes that perfectly encapsulate the lessons.
Brené Brown Lesson 1: Failure Is Inevitable
When you set out to try something, you shouldn’t have the mentality of “I might fail.” Your mentality should be “I will fail, but I will learn.”
Brown talks about the TED conference as a conference of people who have all failed hundreds of times. But we do not see all of the failures, we just see the eventual success.
So we need to take failure into account without feeling afraid that failure will ruin our lives. This can be tough, but it gets easier when we create communities where talking about the things that we are trying becomes normal and talking about failure becomes expected.
Brené Brown Lesson 2: Understand The Place Of Critics
While some people will tell you to ignore the voices of critics entirely, Brown takes a slightly more pragmatic approach. In her work, she tells her audience that they need to know when to listen to critics.
She gives the example of a person fighting in an arena. If you are fighting, you should only take guidance and feedback from people who are in the arena fighting with you, not those who are standing back and watching.
If you can strike that balance of not listening too much to critics but not discounting the opinions of others, you are well on your way to a more healthy relationship with criticism. Find ways to tell whether the person who is criticizing you knows what they are talking about.
Brené Brown Lesson 3: Recognize The Stories In Your Head
The final Brené Brown lesson that everyone should know is how to identify a faulty story in our head.
We all have internal narratives about how things will go, what we should be doing, and what other people are thinking about us. To truly succeed, we need to identify those narratives and learn to communicate with others about our narratives.
If we find that we are butting heads with someone else, we need to recognize that they might have a completely different mental story about what is going on.
In all relationships, taking a moment to clarify the stories that each person is telling can be a lifesaver that saves both people so much grief.
Brené Brown Quotes
Here are three perfect Brené Brown quotes that help us remember her three big lessons. If you want to learn more of the context around these quotes, be sure to check out her podcasts, TED talks, and books.
Failure Is Necessary
“There is no innovation and creativity without failure. Period.” – Brené Brown
When You Are In The Arena
“A lot of cheap seats in the arena are filled with people who never venture onto the floor. They just hurl mean-spirited criticisms and put-downs from a safe distance…Therefore, we need to be selective about the feedback we let into our lives.” – Brené Brown
Breaking Out Of Shame With Our Stories
“If we can share our story with someone who responds with empathy and understanding, shame can’t survive.”– Brené Brown
Combining These Lessons
If we take all of these lessons together, we see a bigger picture. The picture we see tells us that our weaknesses only hurt us when we do not identify them correctly. When we can identify our weaknesses and communicate them to others, we will be able to eventually work together with others to find our collective strengths.
- Brené Brown’s “The Power of Vulnerability” Ted Talk
- Listening to Shame Ted Talk by Brené Brown
- Brené Brown: The Call to Courage
- More Than Corporate Episode #005: Review Of Brené Brown Ted Talks
- More Than Corporate Episode #043: Vulnerability and Brené Brown
Connect With Others To Grow
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