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238 Quotes by Brené Brown

Welcome to our collection of quotes by Brené Brown. We hope you enjoy pondering them and please share widely.

Wikipedia Summary for Brené Brown

Casandra Brené Brown (born 1965) is an American researcher story-teller, professor, lecturer, author, and podcast host. Brown holds the Huffington Foundation's Brené Brown Endowed Chair at the University of Houston's Graduate College of Social Work and is a visiting professor in management at McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin.


If you trade your authenticity for safety, you may experience the following: anxiety, depression, eating disorders, addiction, rage, blame, resentment, and inexplicable grief.



Yo can choose courage, or you can choose comfort, but you cannot choose both.



Get back up. Begin again.



Empathy is simply listening, holding space, withholding judgment, emotionally connecting, and communicating that incredibly healing message if you're not alone.



Mindfully practicing authenticity during our most soul-searching struggles is how we invite grace, joy and gratitude into our lives.



I love to take, process and share photos -- it fills me up.



People learn how to treat us based on how they see us treating ourselves. If I don't put value on my work or my time, neither will the person I'm helping. Boundaries are a function of self respect and self love.





Vulnerability is not about fear and grief and disappointment; it is the birthplace of everything we're hungry for.



Unused creativity is not benign.



Blame is simply if the discharging of pain and discomfort.



I believe that feedback thrives in cultures where the goal is not getting comfortable with hard conversations but normalizing discomfort.



In fact, all of us are very susceptible to having our humiliating experiences turn to shame, especially when the person who is putting us down is someone with whom we have a valued relationship or someone whom we perceive to have more power than we do.



There is no intimacy without vulnerability. Yet another powerful example of vulnerability as courage.







Our need for certainty in an endeavor as uncertain as raising children makes explicit 'how-to-parent' strategies both seductive and dangerous.



He explained that unlike our other classes in the program, research was all about prediction and control. I was smitten. You mean that rather than leaning and holding, I could spend my career predicting and controlling? I had found my calling.







The laughter that happens when people are truth-telling and showing up and being real -- I call that knowing laughter. That's what happens between people when we recognize the absurdity of the belief that we're alone in anything.



If we choose not to get involved or pretend it's not happening, we're going against the very sense of connection that makes us human.



The truth is, I'm a storyteller. And it scares me, because my training as an academic is that the more accessible you are and the more human you are, the less smart you are. It's a shame trigger for me to be honest.



Then I tell my own story. The two things that people really need to transform is language to understand their experience and to know they're not alone. It's the combination of the researcher-storyteller part.





Vulnerability is the core, the heart, the center, of meaningful human experience.



Vulnerability pushed, I pushed back. I lost the fight, but probably won my life back.



I think that shame is a universal, paralyzing, painful emotion.









Lying is a defiance of the truth. Bullshitting is a wholesale dismissal of the truth.



When failure is not an option, we can forget about creativity, learning, and innovation.



When we lose our tolerance for vulnerability, joy becomes foreboding.



You don't have to be a mother to experience mother-shame. Society views womanhood and motherhood as inextricably bound, therefore our value as women is often determined by where we are in relation to our roles as mothers or potential mothers.







When you don't put your initials behind your name, and I've got tons of them, and when you talk about storytelling or love or gratitude, you're diminishing your legitimacy and importance in this world.



If we want to live and love with our whole hearts, and if we want to engage with the world from a place of worthiness, we have to talk about the things that get in the way- especially shame, fear and vulnerability.



I wasn't really testing it on myself as much as I was learning from other people about what it meant to live and love with your whole heart, and then thinking, oh my god, I'm not doing that.



We can talk about courage and love and compassion until we sound like a greeting card store, but unless we're willing to have an honest conversation about what gets in the way of putting these into practice in our daily lives, we will never change. Never, ever.



Courage is a value. My faith is the organizing principle in my life and what underpins my faith is courage and love, and so I have to be in the arena if I'm going to live in alignment with my values.



I believe a joyful life is made up of joyful moments, gracefully strung together by trust, gratitude, inspiration, and faith.



We need to change what we say and what we allow to be said in front of us.



The two most powerful words when we're in struggle: me too.



I'm just so grateful, because to feel this vulnerable means I'm alive.







To be forgiven is to be loved.



But I don't think it's as dangerous, scary, or terrifying as getting to the end of our lives and wondering, what if I would have shown up?



We teach what we have to learn. It's been an extraordinary journey that I couldn't have done with not only the research participants but the community, the tribe that we've built of people who are also on this journey.



Perfectionism is not a way to avoid shame. Perfectionism is a form of shame.



As a shame researcher, I know that the very best thing to do in the midst of a shame attack is totally counterintuitive: Practice courage and reach out!



I am a storyteller and a researcher, and I'm sorry the world has a hard time straddling the tension of those two things, but that's who I am.



That's really part of being a grounded theory researcher -- putting names to concepts and experiences that people have.





I can't even think of the right word, but it's not help. It's more like a prerequisite. I think connection is why we're here, it's what gives purpose and meaning to our lives, and belonging is in our DNA. And so tribe and belonging are irreducible needs, like love.



Social success is growing into a person that other people can depend on.





I believe joy is a spiritual practice we have to work at.



It's easier to live disappointed than it is to feel disappointed. It feels more vulnerable to dip in and out of disappointment than to just set up a camp there. You sacrifice joy, but you suffer less pain.



Courage, the original definition of courage, when it first came into the English language -- it's from the Latin word cor, meaning heart -- and the original definition was to tell the story of who you are with your whole heart.





Perfect and bulletproof are seductive, but they don't exist in the human experience.



When we give ourselves permission to be imperfect, when we find self-worth despite our imperfections, when we build connection networks that affirm and value us as imperfect beings, we are much more capable of change.



Most people believe vulnerability is weakness. But really vulnerability is Courage. We must ask ourselves...are we willing to show up and be seen.



There is nothing more vulnerable than creativity... It's not about winning, it's not about losing, it's about showing up and being seen.



Shame cannot survive being spoken. It cannot tolerate having words wrapped around it. What it craves is secrecy, silence, and judgment. If you stay quiet, you stay in a lot of self-judgment.





I think laughter between people is a holy form of connection, of communion. It's the way you and I look at each other and without words, say, I get exactly what you're saying. And so, it's important to me.





There was only one variable that separated the people who have a strong sense of love and belonging and the people who really struggle for it. And that was, the people who have a strong sense of love and belonging believe they're worthy of love and belonging. That's it. They believe they're worthy.



Joy, collected over time, fuels resilience -- ensuring we'll have reservoirs of emotional strength when hard things do happen.



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.



Feeling vulnerable, imperfect, and afraid is human. It's when we lose our capacity to hold space for these struggles that we become dangerous.



Joy comes to us in moments -- ordinary moments. We risk missing out on joy when we get too busy chasing down the extraordinary.



I think a lot of us are multiple things that don't always fit together neatly in a bio box.



Mindfully practicing authenticity during our most soul-searching struggles is how we invite grace, joy and gratitude into our lives.





If you're not in the arena also getting your ass kicked, I'm not interested in your feedback.



Love is a connection that can only be cultivated between two people when it exists within each one of them -- we can only love others as much as we love ourselves.



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.



If we want to be able to move through the difficult disappointments, the hurt feelings, and the heartbreaks that are inevitable in a fully lived life, we can't equate defeat with being unworthy of love, belonging and joy. If we do, we'll never show up and try again.



I'm never more courageous than when I'm embracing imperfection, embracing vulnerabilities, and setting boundaries with the people in my life.



If we want to make meaning, we need to make art. Cook, write, draw, doodle, paint, scrapbook, take pictures, collage, knit, rebuild an engine, sculpt, dance, decorate, act, sing -- it doesn't matter. As long as we're creating, we're cultivating meaning.



Shame hates it when we reach out and tell our story. It hates having words wrapped around it -- it can't survive being shared. Shame loves secrecy... When we bury our story, the shame metastasizes.



Every time we choose courage, we make everyone around us a little better and the world a little braver. And our world could stand to be a little kinder and braver.



The question isn't so much Are you parenting the right way? as it is: Are you the adult that you want your child to grow up to be?



Yes, I am imperfect and vulnerable and sometimes afraid, but that doesn't change the truth that I am also brave and worthy of love and belonging.



I believe in the healing power of laughter. I believe laughter forces us to breathe.



If you put shame in a petri dish, it needs three ingredients to grow exponentially: secrecy, silence, and judgment. If you put the same amount of shame in the petri dish and douse it with empathy, it can't survive.







You can't get to courage without walking through vulnerability.



Believing that you're enough is what gives you the courage to be authentic.



Every single person has a story that will break your heart. And if you're paying attention, many people... have a story that will bring you to your knees. Nobody rides for free.





Nothing has transformed my life more than realizing that it's a waste of time to evaluate my worthiness by weighing the reaction of the people in the stands.





We're all so busy chasing the extraordinary that we forget to stop and be grateful for the ordinary.



The most powerful teaching moments are the ones where you screw up.



Don't try to win over the haters; you are not a jackass whisperer.



Let go of who you think you're supposed to be and embrace who you are.

Longer Version:

Let go of who you think you should be in order to be who you are. Be imperfect and have compassion for yourself. Connection is the result of authenticity.



We can have courage or we can have comfort, but we cannot have both.



Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we're supposed to be and embracing who we are.

Longer Version:

Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we’re supposed to be and embracing who we are. Choosing authenticity means cultivating the courage to be imperfect, to set boundaries, and to allow ourselves to be vulnerable; exercising the compassion that comes from knowing that we are all made of strength and struggle; and nurturing the connection and sense of belonging that can only happen when we believe that we are enough. Authenticity demands Wholehearted living and loving—even when it’s hard, even when we’re wrestling with the shame and fear of not being good enough, and especially when the joy is so intense that we’re afraid to let ourselves feel it. Mindfully practicing authenticity during our most soul-searching struggles is how we invite grace, joy, and gratitude into our lives.





In order for connection to happen, we have to allow ourselves to be seen, really seen.



Trust is a product of vulnerability that grows over time and requires work, attention, and full engagement.



There is no joy without gratitude.



Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.



When we deny our stories, They define us. When we own our stories, we get to write the ending.



Lean into the discomfort of the work.



For me, vulnerability led to anxiety, which led to shame, which led to disconnection, which led to Bud Light.









We risk missing out on joy when we get too busy chasing down the extraordinary.



Pain is unrelenting. It will get our attention. Despite our attempts to drown it in addiction, to physically beat it out of one another, to suffocate it with success and material trappings, or to strangle it with our hate, pain will find a way to make itself known.





There's nothing more daring than showing up, putting ourselves out there and letting ourselves be seen.


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