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I Thought It Was Just Me (But It Isn't): Making the Journey from "What Will People Think?" to "I Am Enough"
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I Thought It Was Just Me (But It Isn't): Making the Journey from "What Will People Think?" to "I Am Enough"

4.20  ·  Rating details ·  22,030 ratings  ·  1,665 reviews
The quest for perfection is exhausting and unrelenting. We spend too much precious time and energy managing perception and creating carefully edited versions of ourselves to show to the world. As hard as we try, we can't seem to turn off the tapes that fill our heads with messages like, 'Never good enough!' and 'What will people think?'

Why? What fuels this unattainable ne
Paperback, 303 pages
Published January 1st 2008 by Avery Publishing Group (first published 2007)
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Elizabeth I believe it had at least a second printing and they must have changed the subtitle. I read the latter, which referenced "Daring Greatly" on the cover…moreI believe it had at least a second printing and they must have changed the subtitle. I read the latter, which referenced "Daring Greatly" on the cover, so it was definitely a later printing.(less)

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Sep 13, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book, for me, was like how it is in college when you take your first class in psych and suddenly you see psychosis everywhere. I see shame and shaming everywhere now - in how people comment on the internet, talk about politics, treat kids, work together, tell stories about themselves... It really does pervade everything.

This book didn't make me feel less alone. It did make me realize, though, that to have true empathy with someone you need to realize you aren't there to fix or better them.
After two attempts to get through this one, I just cannot do it anymore.

I am still giving it 2 stars. And I'm going to explain that to you.

If you believe that 'shame' is based on how others see you and whether or not you live up to those expectations, this may, indeed, be your book. In fact, if you base your entire sense of self-worth on how well you are "keeping up with the Joneses", and the disconnect between that dream and your reality is your primary source of shame, pick this one up. You ma
Heidi The Reader
Jan 19, 2022 rated it really liked it
Researcher Brené Brown gives readers another self help title on how to handle the difficult emotion called shame.

"This book offers information, insight and specific strategies for understanding shame and building "shame resilience." We can never become completely resistant to shame; however, we can develop the resilience we need to recognize shame, move through it constructively and grow from our experiences." pg xiv

It's not easy to handle shame. In fact, it's not that easy to read about it.

A blogger friend mentioned Brene Brown after I wrote a blog post about vulnerability. My friend said in her comment that I was courageous, yet I'd written the post about how scary it was to be vulnerable. I was puzzled as to how that made me courageous. Then I read I Thought It Was Just Me and I understood better. Brown explains courage as the strength to speak your heart - and this type of courage is one of the key ways to develop and maintain shame resilience.

As I read this book, I felt a bit
#mystrangereading I Thought It Was Just Me by Brenè Brown ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

As I have stated in every review I have ever posted about one of her books, Brown is amazing. I could listen to her speak all day and will read anything she writes. I love listening to her audiobooks the most because it’s like an extensive TED talk. This is why I was so disappointed that this book wasn’t recorded by her. It just wasn’t the same. 😔

However, the content was still amazing. A little too research heavy with less of the
Ed McKeogh
Sep 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: self-help
Dr. Brene Brown and her work on shame and, as an outgrowth of that research, wholehearted living have taken off, shooting into the limelight due to some TED talks, a PBS special, some thought-provoking books and a recent guest appearance on Katie Couric's new show to promote her newest book. So, after reading and enjoying The Gifts of Imperfection, I went back and read this volume.

Instead of a synopsis or thinly veiled attempt at sounding studious, I thought I'd extract a few quotes that, while
Mark Goodman
Mar 15, 2013 rated it liked it
I wanted to love this book because I love Brene Brown. Her podcast interviews with Tammie Simon and Krista Tippett as well as her TED talks have inspired me, changed me and touched me deeply. I find her to be an incredibly inspiring and courageous woman and I believe her research on Shame and vulnerability and full hearted living are changing and healing the world.

That said, I was disappointed by this book. I am wondering whether she is a better teacher and storyteller and presenter than writer
Leslie Nelson
May 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
If I could, I would buy a copy of this for everyone I know...not just women, but men too.

In this book Brene Brown explains about shame, how common and how destructive it is, and more importantly how to develop our "shame resilience".

The suggestions in this book are powerful, doable, and potentially life changing--no--life improving!
Anne Bogel
Brené Brown was just getting rolling with this, her first book. I give you permission to skip it if you promise to read Daring Greatly and The Gifts of Imperfection.
Apr 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
After hearing her Tedx talk, I wanted to explore her work further. I think of my upbringing in an extremely strict religious cult, and realize I've witnessed and experienced the damage of a shame-based culture firsthand. Although the book was originally geared towards women, so far it seems universal enough that it's worth a read by men as well. ...more
Nov 28, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I guess I'm in the minority here when I say I found this book to be rather the opposite of helpful. I found the tone to be one of assumption from the author, even though I know she had back up research. I don't personally think or feel the things the women in the book seem to and I found it almost degrading to be labeled as having serious shame issues simply because I am a woman. I similarly found it nearly degrading to have my identity broken down into such small bits. The author seems to speak ...more
Jun 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Reading Brene Brown is like having someone standing in my face, shaking me, and saying, "You see that crazy thing you're doing? Stop it!" ...more
Jan 22, 2022 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A must-read for us all. Can’t imagine there is anyone who can’t relate to it.
Emma Sea
From the blurb I did not expect so much of this would be about parenting. I felt like it was more about dealing with the feeling of being shamed by other people's comments, or what you think other people expect e.g. a woman forgetting to bring the cookies for her daughter's teacher appreciation day, then blaming her husband for it to avoid feeling like a bad mom. Or a woman having her credit card declined, then snapping at her kids in the car from the stress. The focus is definitely about extern ...more
Jun 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is the third book I’ve read by Brené Brown and it might be my favorite. She has a down-to-earth way of writing that I just love.

In her book I Thought It Was Just Me (But It Isn’t), Brené looks at the difference between shame and guilt, explores the triggers to these feelings, and how to recognize and overcome these strong emotions. She dives deep to get to the root of what triggers fear and shame within us and why we feel certain situations more strongly than others. She also discusses emp
Sunshine Jeremiah
I am absolutely in love with Brene Brown's brain. This book does an excellent job of defining shame (and as different from guilt, embarrassment, humiliation, and low-self-esteem). She sources where and how shame occurs and how to escape the immobilizing impact it can have on spirit and heart. It is story-filled rather than explicitly informative which makes her work accessible to most anyone.

If you are a courageous person who appreciates the value of self-awareness and personal growth for indivi
Jan 27, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the second Brene Brown book that I have read this year. I liked it better than the first as it was more focused on her key area of research - shame, specifically shame in women. Women experience shame when they are entangled in a web of layered, conflicting and competing social-community expectations. She lists twelve areas where women commonly experience shame: appearance and body image, motherhood, family, parenting, money and work, mental and physical health, sex, aging, religion, bei ...more
Kristy Loeks
Jun 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I am so overwhelmed by this book. It has been life-changing for me. But I am afraid to share an honest review, because of how people who know me and read the review will judge me.

But that is the whole problem with shame.

Brown is a shame researcher, and her resilience theory includes the ability to 'name your shame', detach from it to understand it as a societal and widespread - not personal and individualized- issue , and then to form relationships with others, in which you can authentically dis
I have long enjoyed dipping into Brene Brown works, usually it is a section here or a page there as a library pick up or section detailed in an article or blog post. This is my first read of a complete work and I recommend the medium of an audio book for this.
I had a non-thinking task of sorting through multiple packets of photos from my dad's life to select a number to use in a book I am making to assist the staff in his care facility to know who he is, so it was a perfect audio-book day.
Sep 15, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Mixed feelings on this one. Really, really mixed feelings. Probably the biggest feeling is this: Brene Brown seems to have a very white, middle class idea of what shame is. I would expect more from a social worker who has given TED talks. There was a lot about body image (admittedly, a big one for many), keeping up with the joneses, having immaculate children and so on. When Brene used herself as an example and said she was ashamed she didn't bake cookies for her kids' teacher, I thought, wow. T ...more
Mar 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is the second book I have read by this author, and found it just as insightful as the first book I read. I'm not a fan of the title (although that might just be my own 'shame' seeping through), this is an important book for people to read concerning the topic of shame and how it affects us and our relationships with the rest of the world. Well-written and heavily researched, Dr. Brown does an excellent job of laying out a convincing argument for her Shame Resilience Theory and how we can co ...more
James Thomas
Oct 17, 2022 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read it, re-read it and read it again!

I didn't just learn a great deal about women and the particular struggles women go through, but I learned so much about communication and where I fall short, and how I can grow. The topic of shame is one so little discussed but in this brilliant book it is explored but an expert from every angle. I think this should be read in all schools everywhere by everyone!
I want to give this a 4.95, but as I cannot I'll have to round up. This book has already changed me. I have been trying this year to acknowledge and move away from the shame that motivates a lot of my behavior. While reading this book, I had two very applications of the idea of "sharing your story". Firstly, I admitted my anxiety and another person reflected how her not being the only feeling this way about our work helped her feel less shame. Secondly, I admitted how someone's comment at work c ...more
Judy Phin
I'm in two minds about this audiobook. First of all of I am a big fan of Brown, so it was a little disappointing to start listening and realise that someone else was reading it (she was great... I just found that I really enjoyed listening to the passion in Browns voice, she almost becomes a friend through her books in a weird way).

Secondly, the reason I was in two parts about this book is because; as the title suggests, there are a lot of different accounts of Shame through people that Brown h
Apr 15, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It seems like the epidemic that no one wants to talk about. We all try to put this perfect face out to the world. Really, I am the perfect mother, my house is completely clean, I am fulfilled in my job, I am financially successful, I am a perfect size two, I have plenty of time to connect on a deeper level with my loving husband, and I have tons of friends who I share my every thought. Well, that's what we think we should be. The truth just doesn't always match our expectations.

The problem is t
Aug 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing
If you're ashamed of feeling shame or ever wish to have a depth of compassion for others suffering, Brene’ Brown’s I Thought It Was Just Me (but it isn't) may be the read for you.

Mostly on Overdrive app audio loaned on Kindle found myself visually reading along and mostly listening before bed.

I've read and heard Ms Brown speak on this topic often. The core of what I've learned about shame comes when someone personalized they're bad for what has occurred verses this was an action of the individu
Nov 15, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I learned a lot about myself reading this book. It was hard and powerful, and I think all my other high-achieving perfectionist female friends would benefit from the self-study also. I think that I will have to re-read parts of it to help me in the future. It is not a quick and easy self help book, but the kind that sparks a journey and a lot of work.

When I finished, I moved on to Brown's other book, "The Gifts of Imperfection," and got a lot out of that one also. This book was a zoomed in view
Sep 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love Brene Brown's work. I hope to develop shame resilience and contribute to a culture of authenticity, compassion & connection. ...more
"Change begins when we practice ordinary courage." ...more
Despite the fact that the writing style is too verbose, this book has some great insight into shame and how to deal with it.
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Dr. Brené Brown is a research professor at the University of Houston where she holds the Huffington Foundation – Brené Brown Endowed Chair at The Graduate College of Social Work. Brené is also a visiting professor in management at The University of Texas at Austin McCombs School of Business.

She has spent the past two decades studying courage, vulnerability, shame, and empathy and is the author of

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