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Brené Brown’s Brave New World

Brené Brown came into the public eye with hopeful, empathetic messages about the connective power of vulnerability. What does her new book have to say?
by Fionnuala Kavanagh | Feb 21 2018

Brené Brown wants us to find our way back to each other. In a disconnected age, Brown’s work nudges us towards embracing our vulnerability as a way to creativity, humanity, fulfillment and real connection.

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Her humor, charm, and empathy have made her TED Talks massive hits in Internetland, which also speaks to how deeply this message resonates with modern audiences. And not just online. Each of her four titles reached the top spot on the New York Times nonfiction bestsellers list. In short: people love what Brené Brown has to say. Her latest title, Braving the Wilderness, recently hit the Blinkist library, so we’re taking this opportunity to stroll through her works and see what they have to offer us.

Walking on the Wild Side

Published last September, Braving the Wilderness, queries what it means to really belong. In a society that is blatantly struggling to understand itself, opinion has rarely been more polarized, and many of us feel alienated from our fellow humans. Loneliness is the epidemic of our time, and many feel ostracized due to anger, unrest, and feelings of powerlessness. This book expands on her earlier thesis that vulnerability will bring us back to each other, and uses a mix of scientific findings and deft storytelling skills to signpost us back to a more connected, empathetic world.

Past Imperfect

How often do you think about what you should do rather than what you want to do? How often do you stress out about not fitting into a particular societal mold? Our need to appear perfect has been compounded by a world of social media where everyone seems to live a life worthy of the pages of Kinfolk. In actual fact however, happiness isn’t found by achieving perfection, but in accepting and celebrating our so-called imperfections. Brown’s message is that by being truly authentic and embracing our quirks, we’ll be able to live a more honest, fulfilling, empowered life.

You’re Not Alone

In this 2007 publication, Brown examines the complex nature of shame, and teaches us how to deal with it constructively. Shame is a visceral emotion that often arises when people seek compassion, but are instead hit with rejection. Feelings of inadequacy and shame can fester in all of us, at times when we are feeling exposed, and treated insensitively by others. Empathy is the antidote to shame. The author shows us how we can cultivate empathy in order to detangle our knots of negative emotion. Read this top pick to learn how to be kinder to yourself, and the benefits gained from reaffirming that ‘I am enough.’

I Get Knocked Down

In order to achieve anything, you first have to fail. How we deal with that failure has a lot to do with how we will continue on to eventually achieve success, whatever that means to you. Learn how to deal effectively with personal disappointment or to lead a team through a difficult task. Rising Strong offers a three-stage solution to improve communication and build confidence in both our personal and professional lives. Learn how to accept failure, and recover from a negative experience in a way that will give rise to a more balanced state of mind.

Brené Brown’s books have garnered their fair share of acclaim and for good reason. Her encouraging, human, kind-hearted message resonates with people the world over, no matter what it is that they want to achieve in life.

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