In Bed w. Renee : Episode 1

by Renee Greenland

Guidelines For Creating Meaningful Connections

I recently started doing Facebook Lives, discussing topics and creating conversations about things that are going on in my life. In this episode of In Bed With Renee I’m talking about Brené Brown’s book Braving The Wilderness and her guidelines for creating meaningful connections.

It all started with the conversations that were being had in this Facebook post:


Connections . . .  true connections are what we’re truly craving for today. As Brené says, ‘We’re trying to build connected and loving lives while we pack lunches, drive carpools, go to jobs, and push into as many moments of joy as we can.’

I’ve literally read this book from cover to cover. I have dog-eared pages and highlighted bits . . . much to my mom’s disgust for defacing the book. But there was just so much goodness in it I didn’t want to have to re-read it to find the gold.

And so when I was reading peoples comments about connection on this Facebook post I immediately thought of Braving The Wilderness and in particular, her guidelines.

What I loved about this book is Brené’s practical guidelines to establishing relationships based on things like boundaries and integrity. I found this really helpful and so wanted to share it with you.

There’s lots of gold in Braving The Wilderness but what I want to focus on here is a couple of paragraphs about trusting others which I thought was really valuable.

I’ve always been a little bit of a closed off person. I’ve had a lot of betrayal in my life which I’ve come to discover through counselling. And so for me I’m on this journey of learning to open up to people again and learning how to connect after not really having deep and meaningful friendships for some time.

Throughout the book, Brené talks about being vulnerable so that you can build true connections with people. Obviously, if you’re putting yourself in a place of being vulnerable you want to create boundaries, right?

Here are her tips for creating meaningful connections with people:

  1. Boundaries
    You respect my boundaries and when you’re not clear about what’s okay and not okay, you ask. You’re willing to say no.
  2. Reliability
    You do what you say you’ll do. This means staying aware of your competencies and limitations so you don’t over promise and are able to deliver on commitments and balance competing priorities.
    A big one, right? When we’re trying to please people and say we’ll do things when we probably don’t have the time.
  3. Accountability
    You own your mistakes, apologise and make amends. I love that one!
  4. Vault
    This is a huge one! You don’t share information or experiences that are not yours to share. I need to know that my confidence is kept and that you’re not sharing with me any information about other people that should be confidential.
    Sometimes it’s kind of easy to get sucked into gossip but actually it doesn’t serve you or the other person. So I like that and that there’s that reciprocation of, ‘If I tell you stuff, you won’t go and tell other people. And if people have told you stuff, you won’t share it with me because it’s not your stuff to share!’
  5. Integrity
    Another massive one these days! You choose courage over comfort. You choose what is right over what is fun, fast or easy. And you choose to practice your values rather than simply professing them.
    I think a lot of people need to listen to that one . . . myself included.
  6. Non Judgment
    I can ask for what I need and you can ask for what you need. We can talk about how we feel without judgment.
    Then finally generosity.
  7. Generosity
    You extend the most generous interpretation possible to the intentions, words and actions of others.

I just really loved the whole concept of these guidelines. Such easy things to consider when creating new or developing old relationships and connections with people.

We live in a “social” world where we can relate and have conversations online. But it’s those in-person connections that really create that specialness. Right?

If you haven’t checked out this book I highly recommend it. She really is one of my favourite authors at the moment. Especially with all that I’m learning about myself and about connection and relationships. Braving The Wilderness by Brené Brown . . . I highly recommend it.

I hope that brought you some value. Trust in others and trust in yourself. Two really big things when you’re building connection and relationships with people.

PS. If I can see Brené Brown live one day, I’m totally gonna do it!

Look after yourself and I’ll catch you soon.


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