Book Review Series: Daring Greatly

Brene Brown's book can help parents break through the false protection of perfectionism by embracing vulnerability and compassion.

Christina Corcoran

2 min read

Daring Greatly Brene Brown
Daring Greatly Brene Brown
Book Review
Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead

Written by: Brené Brown

Brené Brown is somewhat iconic in the field of self-improvement. In fact, she inspired me to write my first book. During an interview last February on the podcast, Armchair Expert, they were discussing different parenting styles for children and she said what matters most is “be the adult you want your children to grow up to be,” And Dax Shepard agreed wholeheartedly that it’s all about modeling, which is at the heart of my upcoming book.

But let’s get back to the book at hand, Daring Greatly. This book is especially written for women because women are notoriously hard on themselves and equally critical of other women. This all stems from a fear and avoidance of vulnerability.

How does this tie into the topic of perfectionism? Our culture supports a compulsive compare and assess way of living and thinking. We compare our kids, our marriages, our homes, and our bodies to media-driven views of perfection. This creates an emptiness inside, a feeling of unworthiness and scarcity. Brown calls it the “never enough” problem.”

We can’t win the perfection game. There is no perfect anything, only perceptions of perfection and we have no control over other’s perceptions.

When we let perfectionism rule our thinking, we stay in a cycle of shame, judgment and blame.

What I love about this book is her willingness to be open and vulnerable with us. Writing this book, creating this website, and putting myself out there as a trusted source scared me. Doubt crept in and I thought, who am I to tell people how to think or what to do? But that imposter syndrome will crush you before you even get started. Don't let it. I am not here to put on a "perfect" show of how to "not be perfect." I am working right along with you, every day, reading, writing, practicing ... succeeding and failing.

I simply want to share what I've found helpful and hope that you can find value in it too.

Brown helps readers embrace their vulnerability by tearing down the armor we think we need and bravely embracing the imperfections and doubts that make us human.

This is vital if we expect to help our children with their own battles with self-criticism, fear of mistakes, and emotional insecurity.

"Perfectionism is exhausting because hustling is exhausting. It's a never-ending performance."

Gratitude, self-kindness, common humanity, and mindfulness are all important if we expect to change our perfectionism habits. Essentially we need to stop viewing others as our enemies or competitors and start listening to the voices in our heads. Are we treating ourselves with grace? Are we willing to comfort ourselves, like we would a close friend, or do we tear ourselves down, crippled with shame and guilt? Can we recognize and appreciate the "good enough?"

Stay tuned for more book reviews and be ready for my upcoming book.

To listen to the podcast interview mentioned above, go here:

Book Review Series

I hope you find this book helpful and I look forward to sharing more books with you.

Over the course of my research, I have read many books on perfectionism, parenting, self-compassion, mental habits, and mindfulness. I will select books for review that I found valuable.

My upcoming book provides parents with the tools to identify the early signs of perfectionism in their children and is a guidebook for how to model less self criticism and more self-compassion.