I am a lucky girl. I’ve been able to turn one of my passions into a profession. I absolutely love to inspire people to own their health and to take back their power. As much as healthy foods, exercise and relaxation are essential ingredients in any balanced lifestyle, it really all starts with our mindset.
As intention follows attention a few statements presented them self to me last week. They beautifully explain what I am trying to explain – no green juice in the world will make you healthy if you have a negative mindset (Meghan Telpner) or holding on to a toxic belief and the healthiest diet in the world might not free you from your symptoms (Dr Deanna Minich).
The power of belief and the capacity of our minds is unreal – it can make us sick or it can heal us. It can hold us back with fear and shame or it can prompts us explore and conquer with a sense of pride. What frightens us the most, I believe, is the truth that we actually do have a choice and that our lives are all up to us.
Dr. Brene Brown’s work is a protein shake for the soul. Like a post workout shake, her work stops the catabolic breakdown of the body and shifts it into to a anabolic state, builds it up, starts recovery and prepares for the next workout. I am a huge fan as you might have guessed and I just finished her 12-week online program called “The Living Brave Semester.” The program is based on her latest books Daring Greatly and Rising Strong. It has been a life changer for me and I wholeheartedly recommend it!
In her unique and empathic way, Dr. Brown challenges and engages you in the ‘living brave’ process through compassion, understanding and a feeling that we are not alone in our experiences. She guides us through her toolbox in order to rise strong and live a more courageous life.
My favorite quote from Rising Strong sums up this process beautifully: ”When we are brave enough to own our stories, we have earned the right to rewrite the ending.” In order to start owning our stories we need to start feeling our emotions. Dr. Brown explains how to ‘digest’ those messy and uncomfortable feelings that we all have and that make us feel so uncomfortable and are so hard to talk about.
Take shame for example. Man, I get chills down my spine just hearing the word. When I see how shame affects my kids it hurts my heart. According to Dr. Brown, shame promotes two mindsets: Who do you think you are? and I am not good enough! Ring any bells? Being a rockstar when it comes to being vulnerable, Dr. Brown shares her own stories and awakenings (or better known as breakdowns) that have made her work so outstanding and powerful. This is the reason why I connected with her work and I realize that by sharing my own story and struggles I can more effectively connect with my clients.
Dr. Brown, explains how perfectionism is one of the drivers of shame and it comes from that place of – what will other people think? Whereas excellence springs from within and inspires us to try to be the best we can be! Letting go of how other people perceive us is undoubatedly a life time achievement!
Dr. Brown is clear and honest about how life is not a pretty journey. For growth to happen the trip will most likely be uncomfortable. Still, it is so worth it and once you start living brave you can never go back.
My 3 takeaways from the “Living Brave Semester”.
- Cultivate self-compassion. I believe this is a foreign word for many athletes. As a pioneer researcher of self-compassion, Dr. Kristin Neff defines it as: Talk to yourself like you would talk to a friend.
- Identifying my boundaries to help me stay in my integrity. Dr. Brown defines a boundary by asking, what is ok and what is not ok? Simple. And yet so powerful. I also like to consider two different kinds of boundaries: the outside boundaries or what I allow to take in from my environment and the inside boundaries, or how much I listen and obey my inner critic…
- Identifying my core values and making sure they lead they way in all that I do. If, for example, my frustration towards others start brewing, I can now stop and see that we don´t share the same core values instead of trying to convince, push or win over those who don´t walk the same path as I do.
Dr. Brown inspires us to live a braver life in order to create a braver world.