How to not be annoyed – A Rising Strong review

While we’re on the subject of stories we’re telling ourselves, I also listened to Brene Brown’s Rising Strong recently.

To my mind, one of the key points is this: what is the story I’m telling myself about such-and-such situation?

For instance, a colleague could continually do their work late which means that you have to work late to complete a report. The story you tell yourself is that they’re doing this just to annoy you. The idea is that you have a conversation with them and say “the story I’m telling myself is …”    Then they will say that they’re just landed new deals, blah blah, and then you all realise no one is out to get you, it’s all in your mind, and everyone is well afterwards.

Granted, I work in an environment that is not touchy-feely at all so this will never go down there 🙂

However, I have done this in my mind about work and friendship stuff, and it’s quite useful.

Like, the story I’m telling myself how a particular person is inconsiderate. Then I think, “what might actually be going on?” Maybe they’re busy, maybe they have other things going on, etc.”

And then you get less annoyed which is always a useful thing.

She talks a lot about husband/ wife stuff in the book which is great.

Read if you want! Nothing tops Gifts of Imperfection though 🙂

Interestingly (to me), Liz Gilbert and Brene Brown are friends, and Liz had Brene on her podcast where they spoke about the writing of this book. There is an archetype of the tortured writer which most people buy into, and Liz sets this thing firmly on its head in her book, Big Magic. So apparently Brene heard about this concept that creating can actually be fun and joyous, and she wrote this book in a completely different way.

She retreated with friends and spoke to them for 3 days solid, that was transcribed and then edited and voila! A book.


Have you read Rising Strong? What did you think?

Are you a Reluctant Entertainer?

I stumbled upon the Reluctant Entertainer blog and started reading her posts on perfectionism and entertaining.

I think so many of us women aspire to be Martha Stewart with perfect everything that when we fall short, we feel inadequate.

I liked what I saw on the blog and so I ordered the book.

It is a beautiful, hardcover book with gorgeous, glossy pages.

Sheer pleasure for a tactile girl like me!

I’m also very visual and I loved looking at all the photos of food and of easy ideas to decorate your table.

Basically, I’m terrible at reviewing books because I take no notes but I have put some stick-e-tags to mark off the things that spoke to me.

Here they are:

“get out of the jail cell of perfectionism by asking yourself, “am I having people into my home to impress them or to bless them?”

(Like Sandy, I also believe perfectionism is a jail cell that will keep you in bondage)

“Authenticity is honest and doesn’t try to needlessly impress others. And the great thing about being authentic is that it attracts other authentic people – those who are soulful and who make the greatest friends”

(authenticity is one of my highest values)

Some of my take aways:

I love how she says that when you apologise profusely for things (food not being perfect, this not good/ that not good, etc.) you make your guests feel uncomfortable. I will stop doing this immediately 🙂

I also love how she tells people to figure out your style. If you’re a relaxing brunch type of gal, go with it. It doesn’t all have to be supper! Who knew?

We used to have people over for suppers in the pre-twins days and now I honour their sleep (after waiting for it so long!!!) so we don’t have people over in the evenings. I’m now a lunch-time person. But I’ve been freed to have people over for tea and muffins and not feel guilty about it.

Sandy says, “true hospitality is not about being perfect, cooking a fancy meal or spending a lot of money. Rather, it’s about an open door and an open heart.”

Amen to that!

Are you a reluctant entertainer who is trapped in perfectionism?

Do you know your entertaining style?

P.S. If you related to anything I said, either get the book or subscribe to her blog (there is so much insight in the comments too).

P.P.S. I’m not being paid to write this review. She doesn’t even know I exist 🙂

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