Our neighborhood book club recently finished Daring Greatly by Brene Brown. I love the women in my book club and value the time we have spent together over the last couple of months, but this book was a disappointment.
Brene Brown is a wonderful speaker, but I don’t think speaking always translates into writing. Even though the majority of the book was wordy and wandering, there were gems to gleam.
One of the most valuable points discussed in the book was the difference between “fitting in” and “belonging.” Brown interviewed a large group of eighth graders and asked them the difference between those two concepts. They said things like:
“Belonging is being somewhere you want to be, and they want you. Fitting in is being somewhere you really want to be, but they don’t care one way or the other.”
“Belonging is being accepted for you. Fitting in is being accepted for being like everyone else.”
“I get to be me if I belong. I have to be like you to fit in.” (pg. 232)
I am careful to surround myself with people I love and who reciprocate. I am careful to invest in relationships that build me up and not those that fill me with negativity. But this part of the book just spoke to me loudly.
This Christmas season has been busy, brought trials, and perhaps been a bit more stressful than the last few holiday seasons. Making sure I use a filter of spending this holiday season with people that make me feel like I belong, and not just fit in with, is my one and only goal for the last 17 days of this year.
Here’s to belonging this Christmas.