Be strong. Give and receive LOVE.
This is the wrap up of the book. The place that makes you say "ah, yes" this is what we need to do. It comes back to us and how we treat ourselves first before stepping into the wilderness.
We need to have self love and self respect. We need to LIKE our selves. We should want to hang out with ourselves and be able to say "self - YOU are pretty awesome, YOU have boundaries, YOU are reliable, YOU have integrity, YOU practice confidentiality, YOU can give and receive help, You are generous to yourself and to others words and actions." When you can do this then you are able to experience the wilderness and true belonging.
Take time to journal and discuss the following:
Create a daily practice of gratitude.
1. Write it down.
2. Say it out loud.
3. Share it with others.
Try this for 30 days.
Your mission of belonging, being in the wilderness and experiencing the energy from being connected to yourself and to others is not going to happen overnight. This is an adventure and being open to the journey and the process the past will unravel and reveal that strong back, soft heart and wild heart you are seeking.
We are all connected. Energy is the connecting force of our world. We cannot escape it. We either use it for good or not for good. Choose good. It makes us all smile a lot more.
This chapter! This chapter is by far my favorite chapter. It brings it all together. EVERYTHING. The connection between all of us is present and always present no matter what happens on a daily basis. It is what you do with it when this connection is tested over and over and over again.
When the connection is tested and seems broken it is easy to hide, retreat, get angry, yell, cry and yes even hate. It creates a place where we are not able to go into the wilderness. So, amazing isn't it. Just at that time when you should be standing up and shouting from the rooftops and having courage it is easy to stay in our own small world. It makes it easy to get frustrated at someone for being too loud, too quiet, too smelly, too peppy, too happy ... the list can go on! I am sure you get the idea. You have to work with YOU. Work on creating and participating in collective moments!
Journal and/or discuss the following:
1. What collective moments of joy have you participated in? What collective moments of pain have you participated in?
2. How did you feel during the event? After the event?
3. What do you remember in recollection of the event? Who was there? What was going on? Why was the event happening? Were you smiling? Were you laughing? Crying? How does your body feel? What did you smell? What did you hear? What did you wear?
4. It is easy with social media, work, distractions etc to NOT show up. Do you have times where you do this? How can you make a change in this area in your life?
"It's helpful to think of lying as a defiance of the truth and bullshitting asa wholesale dismissal of the truth. Second, it's advantageous to recognize how we often rely on bullshitting when we feel compelled ot talk about things we don't understand." - Brene Brown.
This title says it all! I mean we can all relate, right?! It is actually funny as I write this and think - well I am did exactly what she said as I opened and started reading. I had an opinion without even knowing what the topic was really going to be about. I started debating in my head - you do that right? I started debating with myself and having very strong feelings about bullshit and what people say and do. I did this before even knowing what she had written in the chapter. Darn it. I got sucked in!
My thoughts pulled right to - I am not a bullshitter and if you are well you are not coming to my house for dinner. So there. Tongue sticking out and all! This is what philosophy is considered a false dichotomy or false dilemma. We force people to take sides. It feels safe to take a side. This is something that occurs in high emotional situations. Unfortunately, this creates a side chosen out of fear and not critical thinking.
When we have critical thinking and problem solving we have courage and integrity. We are able to have civility and this is when we can have caring and respect for others. This is a great time to go back to the concept earlier in the book of BRAVING.
Use the acronym braving as a check list for a topic. Choose a topic: journal or discuss using the checklist.
1. Boundaries. What is ok to discuss? How do you set a boundary on a topic?
2. Reliability. Do you BS to much? Are you or the individual trustworthy and reliable?
3. Accountability. How can you keep yourself and others accountable?
4. Vault. Civility means you are confidential with information.
5. Integrity. How do you maintain integrity and make sure the conversation is productive.
6. Non-judgment. Are you able to go into a connection mode and not a place of choose sides.
7. Generosity. What are generous assumptions you can make about others? What boundaries have to be in place so that we can ensure we are more tolerant and kinder?
"We feel love.and we know pain. We feel hope and we know struggle.
Sounds so simple. But yet for some it so difficult. Sounds so easy. But yet for some is so hard. Seems like advice you would give a child in school. Get to know them. You might like them. Or - I am sure if you hung out with Johnny or Sue you would find you have so much in common.
I am sure everyone remembers a time in their childhood that a parent or teacher told you this. Amazingly what did you find? They were right! The person you thought you could NOT stand to be near is now your new best friend. WHY? Why does this happen?
This happens because we are ALL human! We all have the same needs and wants. When we stand back and keep a distance - we get away from the person and we take away their dignity, This is dehumanization. This is a process that takes time and makes a group of people less important, inferior and overall less human. In 'Less Than Human' by David Smith it explains how as humans we must go through this process of using language, actions and then pictures to create an enemy that is less human. This unfortunately can be seen over and over in many war situations and in slavery.
You might be saying to yourself right now these situations are not part of my world. This is not something I deal with but unfortunately you are wrong. There are many places of dehumanization that occur on a regular basis. The biggest place I think we have all seen it is in social media. This is a place where it is easy for the person typing away at their keyboard to dehumanize someone on the other end. It is easy for people to disconnect and disregard another person's dignity.
Brene Brown states that this line of dignity is one that is being crossed every single day by many groups of people every single day. WHY? Fear. We have become a society that is not able to have meaningful conversation and agree to disagree. There is a need to protect the "house" or the "system" - and this is done out of fear.
Fear creates individuals that worry about fitting in vs. having true belonging. It is time to have what is Brene Brown calls conflict transformation and not resolution. Have a desire to learn and lean in and get close up. This is when YOU realize that people are hard to hate close up!
These questions can be used for group discussion or for reflection in your own journal writing.
1. Have you been in a situation where a system was being protected? How did you feel in this situation? Was it easy to get sucked into the emotions? Were you able to voice your opinion? Did you feel worried about not being accepted by the group if you had a different opinion?
2. Have you ever made a statement about a group of people but then found yourself defending the one person that was not like the others in the group?
3. Do you agree with the statement? - "Pain that is denied or ignored becomes fear or hate."
4. The story of Viola Davis is an amazing story. It is a story of pain, fear, courage and vulnerability. Have you had a moment in your life where you decided that the past was not going to define you?
5. EVERY story matters. Your story matters. My story matters. Have you written down your story? Have you shared your story? If, not... what are you waiting for? EVERY story matters.