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The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are

The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are

by Brené Brown

The Gifts of Imperfection isn’t a guidebook on how to achieve happiness; rather, it is a book about all the things that get in the way of true, lasting happiness, joy, and belonging. It explores the concepts of courage, compassion, and connection to understand the reasons behind perfectionism and insecurity. Most importantly, it promotes self-acceptance and self-love, and it will teach you how to be vulnerable and strong at the same time.

Summary Notes

Chapter 1: Courage, Compassion, and Connection

The original meaning of courage was “to speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart.” Today, it’s more synonymous with being heroic, but the original meaning of courage still stands. Yes, it takes courage to be heroic, but on a regular day, what really takes courage is being vulnerable and open.

When we pay attention, we can see courage in a lot of places. We can see courage in anyone who asks a question and risks sounding stupid in front of their peers. We can see courage in the people who admit their mistakes openly and risk the embarrassment that follows. And whenever someone displays courage, it creates a ripple effect and motivates others around them to be courageous too.

Skills to acquire

Chapter 2: Cultivating Authenticity

Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we’re supposed to be and embracing who we are. It means cultivating the courage to be imperfect and vulnerable, exercising the compassion that comes from knowing that we are all made of strength and struggle, and nurturing the sense of belonging that can only happen when we believe that we are enough.

Mindfully practicing authenticity during our most soul-searching struggles is how we invite grace, joy, and gratitude into our lives. It’s not an easy choice to make—it’s the hardest battle you will ever fight in your life—but it’s well worth it.

Skills to acquire

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