It's time To Dare Greatly.
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” ~ Theodore Roosevelt
That was the game changer passage for Brené Brown, and the inspiration behind one of five books, Daring Greatly.’ I finished listening to the audio version a few weeks ago, and have been thinking about it ever since.
Brené spent twelve years researching shame and vulnerability ~ she’s done a few TEDx talks, been featured on two Super Soul Sundays with Oprah, written numerous books and articles, and really walks her talk.
So just what does daring greatly mean? Having the courage to be vulnerable. To be open, to show the world who we really are, and to stand in what we believe. To not let the fear of not being enough, of not gaining approval from others, stand in our way of going after what we truly want. It’s about having the courage to play in the arena.
It takes courage to put yourself out there. To take a chance, to create, to connect, to ask.
It takes courage to take a step of imperfect action before we feel truly ready.
Some days, it takes courage just to show up.
I will be the first to admit I still sometimes struggle with wanting approval from others. And yet, if we attach our worth by the approval we get, we’re destined to fail either way. If we receive criticism, we feel bad. And if we receive praise, we’re doomed. We cannot attach the worthiness of what we put into the world based on others’ feedback or criticism. Otherwise we will always be wanting to please, perform, or perfect.
Daring greatly is about being brave enough to be seen exactly as we are, with all of our fears and imperfections.
If we have the courage to share who we are and what we are feeling, chances are there are numerous others out there that can relate — and are likely feeling exactly the same way. And isn’t that what it is ultimately all about? Connecting with others, relating to others, recognizing and celebrating just how similar we all really are. But we can only do that if we are first brave enough to show up as we really are. And then to be brave enough to play.
We may not always win. In fact, there is a good chance we will lose on more than one occasion. But we will never know if we are going to win or lose unless we actually get into the arena. We will never be completely certain. And not just about succeeding, but about anything in life. Certainly is overrated anyhow. How much fun is playing when we already know what the outcome will be? It’s about getting into the ring, ‘getting marred by blood and sweat and dust’, and yet still playing and striving valiantly.
And if we never even try, aren’t we already simply destined to lose anyhow?
It’s often our fear that keeps us comfortable, keeps us stagnant. But ironically, it is also this fear that is going to ultimately propel us forward. If we recognize that standing in our fear is what it means to be vulnerable, we will see that being vulnerable is also all about having the courage to work through our fear.
Today, I challenge us all to dig deep and find a little courage. Find a little courage to stand in who we are. Find a little courage to go after what we believe in, and to go after what we truly want. Find a little courage to put something out there, to create, to be seen.
Be brave enough to get into the arena. Be brave enough to dare greatly.
It’s not about winning or losing, it’s about being brave enough to play at all. It’s about daring greatly. Click to tweet it out!
Have a FAB week, everyone!
And now I’d LOVE to hear from you! How are you doing to dare greatly this week? Share your ideas in the comments below.