Book notes – Braving the Wilderness – Brown


Belonging is important. When in pain, 3 outcomes 1. Live in CST pain seek relief try to numb pain or pass it on to others. 2 deny pain and makes it pass to those around you and your children. 3 own pain develop empathy and compassion in yourself and others.

Bring authentic self, don’t change for people/contracts. Values and experiences without filters

Need for belonging, usually try to fit in and seek approval, should show our authentic self to the world to get real acceptance.

Sometimes need to stand alone

Belonging starts with ourselves brave uncertainty, vulnerability and criticism

Trust – ourselves and others. Choosing to make something you value vulnerable.

Braving as checklist

B – boundaries (ask, willing to say no)
R – reliability (know limits say what you do)
A- accountability, be accountable make amends
V – vault (don’t share things not yours to share ie others)
I – integrity (choose what’s right over easy)
N – non judgement
G – generosity (interpret it was meant in most generous way possible)

We make our own path as we go, if we see it step by step, it is not ours

True belonging is being who we are vs changing who we are

Echo chamber (sorting people and socializing with only our own circles) alienates us from eachother.

As sorting increases, loneliness increases. There is less diversity and exposure to diverse circles.

Difference between loneliness and being alone.

Identify loneliness, find connection. Quality over quantity in friends.

Increase in chance of dying early: Air pollution 5%, obesity 20%, excessive drinking 30%, loneliness 45%

Fear reason behind us not seeking connections and more loneliness

People hate to get away from fear

Most that feel belonging base their thoughts on their experience not on what media or others are saying

Clear boundaries make people more open. Less likely to feel people will walk all over.

Dehumanization – we can’t treat other humans badly so we treat them as non-human so not worthy of human treatment

Create image of enemy, lose ability to communicate, loss of empathy. Can lead to violence/murder/rape etc.

Ie, Jews during Holocaust, first Nations, slaves etc.

Work to re-humanising. Social media and politics use Dehumanization, anonymity does not help

Cannot accept Dehumanization to anyone or any group regardless of our views.

Understand, listen rather than interrogate or shut conversation down or agree to disagree without understanding problem. Focus on where things are now and what to do moving forward, not past.

With or against used often, usually when under a lot of stress. Often other options may be possible, pushes emotions into a weapon, need to identify the other choices, ask questions.

Ie, nra and gun ownership, with nra on everything or against them on everything, no middle ground

Sometimes people get mad and rip into people, instead of coming with empathy to understand why certain language was used. Could be innocent

Seek moments of collective joy/pain gives us more connections to others despite many other disagreements in other settings

Experience of collective joy or pain, not real if dehumanising or hurting others.

Act of courage needs: risk, uncertainty and vulnerability

When grateful for what we have, understand magnitude of what is lost (talking to those that went though lots of pain). Pretend everything is ok is core of privilege.

Don’t look for confirmation you don’t belong or aren’t good enough, will always find it because that’s what we’re looking for





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