The Red Couch: Daring Greatly Introduction


BookClub-AprilThree years ago I filed into a ballroom at the Opryland Hotel alongside hundreds of women and a few men. We were there for Blissdom—my first ever blog conference—and while the weekend had kicked off with a cocktail party the night before, the morning keynote promised to set the tone for the next two days.

I had never heard of Brené Brown before. Her groundbreaking TEDtalk had taken place several months prior but I don’t think TEDtalks were on my radar yet. I sat at a table with new friends, unaware my life was about to change.

Brown didn’t talk long before I began brushing away tears. I wasn’t the only one. Sniffles filled the ballroom and Kleenex made the rounds. We needed to believe in our worthiness, to not let our fears drive us. We needed to learn what vulnerability truly is: courage and authenticity. And yes, we even needed to think about our “bury a body” friends.

I used some of Brown’s teaching that very weekend. What could be a better way to attend a blog conference than by facing our insecurities? What could be a better way to meet new people than by being aware of shame and vulnerability?

Flipping through my notes from that morning, I have another vantage point three years later. Brown’s teaching connects us. It lets us know we’re not alone.

There’s a reason people say Brené’s name with such fervor. Her research on shame, perfection, and vulnerability changes lives. It leads to healing and freedom. It is a gift, if we are willing to receive it.

This month we’re reading Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead. Brown’s writing might not be for everyone but the concepts she writes about absolutely are.

You will recognize yourself on the pages and in the examples she shares. You’ll recognize your loved ones and even your foes. As you read, I pray you’ll be open to examining your habits, your character traits, your strengths, your weaknesses. We cannot begin to change until we look at ourselves in the mirror and face what we see.

This is not an easy process but Wholehearted Living is worth it. Let’s press in together. Let’s encourage each other to shake off the lies that bind us and our relationships.

Let’s dare greatly.

Come back Wednesday April 16 for a reflection post led by Cara Meredith, which will offer a practical or hands-on way to respond to the book’s ideas and themes. The discussion post, led by Sarah Caldwell, will be up Wednesday April 23. Join the Facebook group to share quotes and discuss the book throughout the month. On Twitter, the official Red Couch Book Club hashtag is #redcouchbc.

The Nightstand at SheLoves Magazine

*Recommended by Sarah Caldwell, Cara Meredith, Annie MacDowell


Will you be reading Daring Greatly with us?

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Image credit: Ryan Hyde

Leigh Kramer
Leigh Kramer is on a quest; she’s living life on purpose. Her to-do list might look something like this: leave life in the Midwest for Nashville, Tennessee, followed by San Francisco, quit steady job as a social worker to chase her dreams of writing, suck the marrow out of life’s in-between places and revel in the now at every turn. Leigh shares this journey through words of transparency, heart, and just a dash of pluck at and on Twitter at @hopefulleigh.
Leigh Kramer

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