In addition to perfectionism, there’s another strategy we often use the limit our vulnerability. Brene calls it’s “numbing.”
And If you’re like me, you’re going to find it very familiar. I know I’ve certainly used “crazy-busy” as a defense mechanism. I think I first learned that approach as a teenager.
As we’re learning, those defenses most certainly keep us from daring greatly and living out our purpose in the world. Be sure to watch the video below for more piercing insights from Brene on how this affects us.
Tomorrow, we’ll learn more about what we can do instead.
Another Dangerous Path
If you’re wondering if this section is about addiction and you’re thinking, “This isn’t about me,” please read on. This is about all of us. First, one of the most universal numbing strategies is what I call “crazy-busy.” I often say that when they start having 12-step meetings for busy-aholics, they’ll need to rent out football stadiums. We are a culture of people who’ve bought into the idea that if we stay busy enough, the truth of our lives won’t catch up with us.
If you’re also wondering whether numbing refers to doing illegal drugs or having a few glasses of wine after work – the answer is yes. I’m going to argue that we need to examine the idea of “taking the edge off,” and that means the glasses of wine we drink while we’re cooking dinner, eating dinner, and cleaning up after dinner, our sixty-hour workweeks, the sugar, the fantasy football, the prescription pills, and the four shots of espresso that we drink in order to clear the fog from the wine and Advil PM. I’m talking about you and me and the stuff we do every day.
“Numb the dark and you numb the light.”
– Brene Brown
Today, I will practice taking off my “mask” so that I may dare greatly.
The human spirit can endure in sickness, but a crushed spirit who can bear?