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Daring Greatly
Cover of Daring Greatly
Daring Greatly
How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead
The #1 New York Times bestseller. 1 million copies sold!
From thought leader Dr. Brené Brown, a transformative new vision for the way we lead, love, work, parent, and educate that teaches us the power of vulnerability.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; . . . who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly."—Theodore Roosevelt
Every day we experience the uncertainty, risks, and emotional exposure that define what it means to be vulnerable or to dare greatly. Based on twelve years of pioneering research, Dr. Brené Brown dispels the cultural myth that vulnerability is weakness and argues that it is, in truth, our most accurate measure of courage.
Brown explains how vulnerability is both the core of difficult emotions like fear, grief, and disappointment, and the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, empathy, innovation, and creativity. She writes: "When we shut ourselves off from vulnerability, we distance ourselves from the experiences that bring purpose and meaning to our lives."
Daring Greatly is not about winning or losing. It's about courage. In a world where "never enough" dominates and feeling afraid has become second nature, vulnerability is subversive. Uncomfortable. It's even a little dangerous at times. And, without question, putting ourselves out there means there's a far greater risk of getting criticized or feeling hurt. But when we step back and examine our lives, we will find that nothing is as uncomfortable, dangerous, and hurtful as standing on the outside of our lives looking in and wondering what it would be like if we had the courage to step into the arena—whether it's a new relationship, an important meeting, the creative process, or a difficult family conversation. Daring Greatly is a practice and a powerful new vision for letting ourselves be seen.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
The #1 New York Times bestseller. 1 million copies sold!
From thought leader Dr. Brené Brown, a transformative new vision for the way we lead, love, work, parent, and educate that teaches us the power of vulnerability.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; . . . who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly."—Theodore Roosevelt
Every day we experience the uncertainty, risks, and emotional exposure that define what it means to be vulnerable or to dare greatly. Based on twelve years of pioneering research, Dr. Brené Brown dispels the cultural myth that vulnerability is weakness and argues that it is, in truth, our most accurate measure of courage.
Brown explains how vulnerability is both the core of difficult emotions like fear, grief, and disappointment, and the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, empathy, innovation, and creativity. She writes: "When we shut ourselves off from vulnerability, we distance ourselves from the experiences that bring purpose and meaning to our lives."
Daring Greatly is not about winning or losing. It's about courage. In a world where "never enough" dominates and feeling afraid has become second nature, vulnerability is subversive. Uncomfortable. It's even a little dangerous at times. And, without question, putting ourselves out there means there's a far greater risk of getting criticized or feeling hurt. But when we step back and examine our lives, we will find that nothing is as uncomfortable, dangerous, and hurtful as standing on the outside of our lives looking in and wondering what it would be like if we had the courage to step into the arena—whether it's a new relationship, an important meeting, the creative process, or a difficult family conversation. Daring Greatly is a practice and a powerful new vision for letting ourselves be seen.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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    Praise for Daring Greatly

    © DANNY CLARK

    Brené Brown, Ph.D., LMSW, is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work. She has spent the past decade studying vulnerability, courage, worthiness, and shame. Her 2010 TEDxHouston talk, on the power of vulnerability, is one of the most watched talks on TED.com. Brené is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller The Gifts of Imperfection (2010), I Thought It Was Just Me (2007), and Rising Strong (2015). Brené is also the founder and CEO of The Daring Way—a teaching and certification program for helping professionals who want to facilitate her work on vulnerability, courage, shame, and worthiness. Brené lives in Houston with her husband, Steve, and their two children.

    ALSO BY BRENÉ BROWN

    The Gifts of Imperfection

    I Thought It Was Just Me (but it isn't)

    Rising Strong

    WHAT IT

    MEANS TO

    DARE

    GREATLY

    THE phrase Daring Greatly is from Theodore Roosevelt's speech "Citizenship in a Republic." The speech, sometimes referred to as "The Man in the Arena," was delivered at the Sorbonne in Paris, France, on April 23, 1910. This is the passage that made the speech famous:

    "It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.

    The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again,

    because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause;

    who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly...."

    The first time I read this quote, I thought, This is vulnerability. Everything I've learned from over a decade of research on vulnerability has taught me this exact lesson. Vulnerability is not knowing victory or defeat, it's understanding the necessity of both; it's engaging. It's being all in.

    Vulnerability is not weakness, and the uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure we face every day are not optional. Our only choice is a question of engagement. Our willingness to own and engage with our vulnerability determines the depth of our courage and the clarity of our purpose; the level to which we protect ourselves from being vulnerable is a measure of our fear and disconnection.

    When we spend our lives waiting until we're perfect or bulletproof before we walk into the arena, we ultimately sacrifice relationships and opportunities that may not be recoverable, we squander our precious time, and we turn our backs on our gifts, those unique contributions that only we can make.

    Perfect and bulletproof are seductive, but they don't exist in the human experience. We must walk into the arena, whatever it may be—a new relationship, an important meeting, our creative process, or a difficult family conversation—with courage and the willingness to engage. Rather than sitting on the sidelines and hurling judgment and advice, we must dare to show up and let ourselves be seen. This is vulnerability. This is daring greatly.

    Join me as we explore the answers to these questions:


    • What drives our fear of being vulnerable?
    • How are we protecting ourselves from...
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    July 23, 2012
    Brown (The Gifts of Imperfection) examines vulnerability and imperfection in her latest, which takes its title from Theodore Roosevelt’s speech “Citizenship in a Republic.” Brown, a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work, is the first to admit that vulnerability makes her uncomfortable, but posits that daring to fail is the only true way to be wholeheartedly engaged in any aspect of life. “Experiencing vulnerability isn’t a choice—the only choice we have is how we’re going to respond when we are confronted with uncertainty, risk and emotional disclosure,” she says. Laying out a roadmap for change, the author includes chapters on eliminating blame and shame from work and education, and daring to be the adults we want our children to be. At the same time, she explores what drives people to feel vulnerable and how to address common coping mechanisms in what she calls the “Vulnerability Armory.” But the core of her message is understanding the difference between guilt and shame, and developing “shame resistance.” Brown’s theories—complete with personal and not always flattering examples from her own life—will draw readers in and have them considering what steps they would dare to take if shame and fear were not present. Agent: Jo-Lynne Worley, Worley Shoemaker Literary Management.

  • Kirkus

    August 1, 2012
    Brown (Univ. of Houston Graduate College of Social Work; The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are, 2010, etc.) exposes and challenges some of the common myths surrounding vulnerability. After more than a decade of research and hundreds of interviews, the author presents her findings on the concepts of shame, weakness and vulnerability. Defining vulnerability "as exposure, uncertainty, and emotional risk," the author maintains that this feeling is the crux of most of our meaningful experiences. Ultimately, she writes, it is not a weakness; everyone is vulnerable, we all need support via friends and family. Trust and vulnerability go hand in hand. Brown believes it is essential to expose oneself to a wide range of feelings in order to combat shame, break down the walls of perfectionism and stop the act of disengagement that separates many from themselves and others. By accepting her directives, readers will be engaged, gain a sense of courage and learn how to create meaningful connections with their children or fellow workers. "Rather than sitting on the sidelines and hurling judgment and advice," she writes, "we must dare to show up and let ourselves be seen. This is vulnerability. This is daring greatly." When we choose to dare greatly, the rewards are vast: We feel more loved and are more loving, we feel worthy of that love, we choose our path and commit to it with daily practice, and we live with courage, engagement and a clear sense of purpose. A straightforward approach to revamping one's life from an expert on vulnerability.

    COPYRIGHT(2012) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead
Brené Brown
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