I just listened to this excerpt from Brene Brown’s book, “Daring Greatly.”
I remembered a conversation that I had just had with a guy in his very early twenties. He told me that his parents sent him link to my TED talks and he really liked the idea of Wholeheartedness and daring greatly. When he told me that the talks inspired him to tell the young woman he’s dating for several months that he loved her, I winced and hoped for a happy ending to the story.
No such luck. She told him that she thought he was “awesome” but that she thought they should date other people. When he got back to his apartment after talking to his girlfriend, he told his roommates what had happened. He said, “They were both hunched over their laptops and without looking up one of them was like, ‘What were you thinking, man?’” One of his roommates told him that girls only like guys who are running the other way. He looked at me and said, “I felt pretty stupid at first. For a second I was mad at myself and even a little pissed at you. But then I thought about it and I remembered why I did it. I told my roommates, ‘I was daring greatly, dude.’”
He smiled when he told me, “They stopped typing, looked at me, nodded their heads, and said, ‘Oh. Right on, dude.’”
Aside from making me smile, this story was a lovely reminder of the power of framing. It moved from “What were you thinking?” to “Right on, dude” the moment he framed it differently.
There is rarely good or bad. It is how we choose to frame it.