The Wise Brené Brown

LIVE at the Massachusetts Conference for Women

I had the honor of hearing Brené Brown drop many wisdom bombs yesterday in her two presentations at the Massachusetts Conference for Women. Thanks, Anng Kenney for inviting me to join. Brené Brown is a bottomless pit of wisdom and perspective; I feel like I have been to human being training camp. I have read her books, seen her Netflix special and watched her TED talks multiple times, but I always learn more. She always has new stories and makes more connections. Even the same message lands in a new way each time.

Brené reminds us to aim higher right along with her. Our personal glitches become so much more approachable with her guiding words of wisdom. Engaging in Brené Brown’s work should be required for all humans. Even a whiff of BB makes us choose to be a bit better.

My favorite story from yesterday has brought me to tears of laughter three times since I heard it, even once during this morning’s meditation. She and her husband were at an Astros game. At one point, she put her hand in her husband’s back pocket and gave his backside a little squeeze. Then she looked over to discover that it was not her husband’s pocket. The guy looked at her and said, “Go Astros.” What a cringy moment with a classic response.

She discussed the barriers to courageous leadership, the skillsets for courage, BRAVING and uncomfortable conversations. She said, “Brave leaders are never silent about hard things.” When addressing Inclusivity, Equity and Belonging she said, “If you can’t have these conversations (hard ones), you can’t lead. If they make you so uncomfortable that you won’t have them, that is privilege.” Boom. Note taken.

When exploring how we get stuck in setbacks, Brené referred to her work with professional athletes and their organizations. When she asked the scouts what they look for in athletes, she was surprised that they aim for great athletes who are able to reset after a setback rather than superstar athletes who get stuck in their heads after a setback.

When talking about BRAVING, Brené explored the idea of choosing courage over comfort. From thousands of interviews, she was surprised that the #1 trust-earning quality is ASKING FOR HELP. So many people fake it till they make it, depend on the Internet for all the answers, and believe they are weak if they admit what they don’t know. Vulnerability and shame are the base for so much of her work, but dang, people, she opens it all up and digs in to all the nooks and crannies relating to these ideas. I can’t wait to keep reading and listening to all that she puts out to the world.

2 thoughts on “The Wise Brené Brown”

  1. Hey Cindy,

    How are you doing in this time of social distancing? We miss you over here in Piedmont, CA. I’m still working with the small group of parents you met while you are out here. We’re currently trying to work out how to continue our programming when we can’t be in the same space. Perhaps you are, too? If you have any tips to share on what works well, please do share. Meanwhile, I’m signing up for your blog!

    Hope you and your loved ones are doing well.

    PPN – Piedmont Parents Network

  2. Hi Shirley,

    We are doing well. I am so glad to hear you are working with parents – This is such an important part of shifting some of the issues teenagers are dealing with. I am working on new projects (book, YouTube channel and solo show about my mom) during this time and doing some talks by Zoom. We have terrible internet connection, but I have managed to give a number of talks and have group discussions on Zoom. Some groups are large, and the questions and comments are sent ahead and during the talk on chat. It has been working well. Would CA allow social distancing meetings outdoors?

    I assume your kids are both home. I hope that is going well. I have a son who just finished college at home and daughter who finished her sophomore year. Our other son is finishing his high school Junior year. It has been nice to regroup as a family, work on neglected projects and bring the pulse down for a spell. We are fortunate to live in a rural place. If you want to check in by phone, let me know.

    Take care, Cindy


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