Rising Strong: Chapter 4

Chapter 4 is called “The Reckoning.” It’s about writing your own story, accepting and sorting out your emotions, and getting curious about why you’re feeling a certain way. These actions allow you to engage with your life and to life life to the fullest.

Selected quotes from the chapter:

The opposite of recognizing that we’re feeling something is denying our emotions. The opposite of being curious is disengaging. When we deny our stories and disengage from tough emotions, they don’t go away; instead, they own us, they define us. Our job is not to deny the story, but to defy the ending-to rise strong, recognize our story, and rumble with the truth…”

We can’t deny feelings, avoid exploring our curiosities, or deny what our life story is. It’s no way to live your life. So even though it’s hard, if you want to rise strong and life your best life, you have to follow the advice in this quote.

“Choosing to be curious is choosing to be vulnerable because it requires us to surrender to uncertainty.”

Brene doesn’t mean choosing to be curious in small ways either, like: “Should I try my sandwich without tomatoes today?” 1. Yes, because curiosity is good (and DOESN’T kill the cat) and 2. Be curious in BIG ways. What if you researched that one company you’ve been interested in for awhile and see if they have jobs available, and then apply? Or something like that, something BIG. Choose to be curious because it’s good for you, allows you to be vulnerable (which is good for you), and allows you to accept that we can’t know everything in life, especially outcomes.

“I used to look back at those far-flung dots as mistakes and wasted time, but allowing myself to be curious about who I am and how everything fits together changed that. As difficult and dark as some of those times were, they all connect to form the real me, the integrated and whole me.”

Every experience you have shapes who you are; never regret any experience you have. I believe that everything happens for a reason, and each experience will play an important role in your life somehow.

“You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.”

-Maya Angelou

Don’t let any experience completely define you, especially if it was a failure or mistake. Learn from it, then move on.

“Give yourself permission to feel emotion, get curious about it, pay attention to it, and practice.”

It’s okay to feel sad, lonely, depressed, etc. Everyone does at some point. To rise strong, you feel the emotion, look into why you feel that way, keep an eye out as to what makes you feel that emotion, and practice this process a lot.

“Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment. Mindfulness also involves acceptance, meaning that we pay attention to our thoughts and feelings without judging them.”

Keep this definition of mindfulness in mind (pun intended) since it can help you.

“Breath and mindfulness give us the awareness and space we need to make choices that are aligned with our values.”

These two tools are always at your disposal and can be useful in all sorts of situations.

“The most difficult part of our stories is often what we bring to them-what we make up about who we are and how we are perceived by others.”

You know the saying, “If you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all?” This quote brought that adage to mind. Own your story, and don’t bring any negativity into it, whether it’s your own thoughts or other people’s thoughts. Your story is yours, so take it at face value and don’t cloud it with negativity. Your story is awesome, and so is your happy and healthy adventure that you’ll always be on. 🙂 ❤


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