Brené Brown tackles the tough topic of what to do when we are faced with one of those I’m-a-failure-at-life moments, when you feel like life has thrown you into a pretzel in a wrestling ring. Ms. Brown uses personal experiences as anecdotal evidence that she builds off of using her expertise as a social worker and her research and shares how readers can face these moments head on, process and analyze, and then become better prepared to face what life throws at us next.
There’s a lot about this book that taught me how to face these on-the-mat moments. She points out that many times when we are faced with that moment where you feel like you can’t do anything right, we tend to ignore the emotions and try and move on as quickly as possible. The problem is that when we move on quickly, it tends to be adrenaline driven-fight or flight. When we don’t process what happens and affirm what we are feeling we are building up negative feelings such as aggression, resentment, denial. When we have these negative feelings weighing us down, it’s hard to move on from these experiences and feel prepared to face these moments again.
Having faced a few of these moments in my life, I found that a lot of what was shared in the book was relatable. I also realized that some of the suggestions for rising strong I have been doing subconsciously, but now I can give them a name and know why I’m doing what I’m what I’m doing. She has a lot of useful metacognitive methods for dealing with confrontation and discussions with people in our lives who cause us to feel like we are worthless. I found these very useful especially as a teacher when sometimes it’s hard to validate my own feelings as well as having to model good confrontational behaviors for students (and, sadly, parents).
I liked the idea behind the book as well as the memoir aspects of the book. I got a little lost in the philosophy and research sections as I felt she was repeating the same information in different ways. That could also just be me as I tend to prefer more bare-bones non-fiction. Regardless, this is a valuable read.