Daring Greatly | Dom's Book Club for June 2015

Like a lot of people, I first heard the words of Brene Brown through a TED talk. It was a small, 10-minute session of a TED Radio Hour, where she was talking about vulnerability. It immediately caught my attention, because I’ve had more than one personal relationship that didn't catch fire because someone was unable to be vulnerable. (Sometimes me, sometimes the woman.)

Because of that, over the past several years I’ve embraced the fact that it’s practically impossible to grow in a relationship - personal, work, or otherwise - if you’re not willing to put down your defenses and dive in.

It was President Teddy Roosevelt who provided the title for Brown. Roosevelt understood that success and achievement is great, but that even failure is good if you have dared greatly. In other words, get your ass in the ring and take your swings. Or, as Brown writes:

When we shut ourselves off from vulnerability, we distance ourselves from the experiences that bring purpose and meaning to our lives.

It’s so true.

The author relies on research and personal experience to show us that courage isn’t about making yourself a warrior behind walls; it’s becoming brave enough to let down those defenses, and allow yourself to live fully and exuberantly. Do we really want to look back later and say that we lived safely inside a bubble?

Fortunately I learned this lesson before reading the book, but I know (personally) several people who could probably gain a lot by thumbing through many of these chapters. You can call it a self-help book if you like, but it’s really a book that simply opens your eyes - and then gives you the strength to dare greatly. The only way you love completely - and happily - is by being vulnerable.

Find Daring Greatly by Brene Brown at The Tattered Cover Book Store. Just mention Dom’s Book Club, and you’ll get Daring Greatly for 20% off through the end of June.

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