What is ‘The Gifts of Imperfection’ about?
Researcher, social worker and writer Brené Brown’s book, The Gifts of Imperfection is a mixture of science and storytelling. It unwinds a fantastic tale and provides one with meaningful insights.
The subtitle, ‘Let Go of Who You Think You’re Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are’ is an accurate description of the message being portrayed across.
The Ingredients of Happiness
The scientific basis of this book and of Brown’s ideology is situated in her research and analysis of thousands of stories collected from men and women between the ages of 18-87.
Brown started to see patterns in these then, the participants who lived ‘amazing and inspiring lives’ had embraced imperfection and vulnerability.
It was quite a shock even for Brown, as they talked about these things in a way that was completely new to her. They didn’t showcase the expected ingredients of happiness that Brown thought she’d witness among happier people.
Towards A Wholehearted Life
The book is then about Brown’s journey towards a happier, ‘wholehearted’ life.
The book begins with three chapters on tools required for a wholehearted living: courage, compassion and connection. It shows the barriers that get in the way of these attributes and a wholehearted life.
The remaining bulk of the book focuses on 10 guideposts that help you cultivate a wholehearted life.
The guideposts are:
- resilient spirit
- gratitude and joy
- intuition and trusting faith
- play and rest
- calm and stillness
- meaningful work
- laughter, song and dance.
What I Love
Brené connects the material in the book very well with real life experiences, and helps the reader understand the content clearly and precisely.
There are charming anecdotes spread throughout the book and they keep you hooked to it.
The book is also filled with many valuable insights into our daily life, and allows readers to relate the material to themselves, and this inspirational quality is its strongest suit.
What I Didn’t Like
In contrast, the weakest point is the lack of connectivity between chapters. The writing style might be suitable for internet blogs, not a literary book. Somewhat ironic that me, the blogger, writes that – but that is how I feel 😉
Also, Brown relates god and spiritual connection with joy and happiness. Unfortunately, she doesn’t define this connection and the way to achieve it. This part is also non-inclusive of people that don’t believe in any supernatural deity.
Summary & Recommendation
But all in all, ‘The Gifts of Imperfection’ is a really inspirational and quality read, with characteristics that can inspire one to change their lifestyle and mindsets.
It is much required in this age when popular media imposes the notion for perfection on everybody.
This book accepts the reality that we are imperfect and teaches us to accept that and love ourselves despite our many flaws.
In short: Thumbs up!