Ferris Wheel Thoughts


She nailed it.

You ever have those moments where your thoughts just connect? Its like all those tidbits of information are these Knex pieces on the table, seemingly unconnected, and then BAM…someone shows you that you can make a Ferris Wheel.

I love those moments.

Well, I was doing a superb job avoiding my to-do list with a blog of one of my favorite speakers, Brene Brown. A self-proclaimed researcher and storyteller, this woman is seriously someone to aspire to. Her twenty-minute lectures are inspiring (and of course backed with lots of research, which makes my nerdy heart patter) and engaging.

Brene Brown studies shame, authenticity, and courage. She studies what holds people from being “whole hearted” or who they want to be. And she backed it with a 6 year longitudinal study. All you researchers in the house please tip your hat. That is a feat.

Back to making a Ferris Wheel of thoughts. In the middle of her lecture, she defined the difference between guilt and shame.

Guilt is “I made a mistake.”

Shame is “I am a mistake.”

Guilt is a temporary state of being. Shame is a being.

OK, kind of elementary BUT the kicker of all of this is that guilt-temperament people are healthy. They have a sense of when they make mistakes and then apologize. Shame-temperament people are the ones that demonstrate high risk behaviors, such as violence, drugs, risky sexual behaviors, or eating disorders.

Still too elementary?

Well, this is interesting. The main factor in a person being guilt-conscious vs. shame-ridden is parenting.

Kids grow up being told, “You are a good kid who made a mistake” or “You are bad.”


This is what pains me when we talk about the inner city. It is the “bad part of town” where the “bad people live” and “bad things happen.” To us in the suburbs (and maybe even to the residents there),

its ‘badness’ of the inner city is a being.

There is SHAME to live there. There is SHAME to be a resident there.

And from what the wonderful Brene Brown has shown us, shame is isolating and debilitating. We’ll do what it takes to get away from the feeling.

What would it feel like to have shame just from where you live?

Below is the Brene Brown video I referred to  in this blog. Seriously worth watching. And I would love to hear your thoughts if you watch it (and even if you don’t)!

<iframe src=”http://player.vimeo.com/video/11967584?title=0&amp;byline=0&amp;portrait=0&#8243; width=”400″ height=”300″ frameborder=”0″></iframe><p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/11967584″>The UP Experience</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/user557461″>Brené Brown</a> on <a href=”http://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>


About Kate

I remember the first time I heard it. A lanky fourteen-year-old that had grown legs, but not an identity, hugging the cold hardwood floor on a hot summer day. The black plastic radio blared the hits today and yesterday. I rested my eyes, trying to push away the heat. I do not remember the songs that proceeded or followed it, but I do remember the grin that broke out when I heard "...she checks out Mozart while she does Taebo." As cliche as it sounds, my young teenage heart found hope in the confident uniqueness of Train's "Drops of Jupiter" mystery woman. I wanted to be her. Well, maybe not her, but someone who lived authentically even if it was slightly puzzling others. I hated the idea of being inconsistant, but her contradictions were not inconsistency, but rather her journey to connecting the very different parts of her life together. They made sense, because she was her. And it even inspired others to question and develop..."reminds me that there is room to grow." Since then, I have been "tracing my ways through the constellations" on a sort of "soul vacation." I have been met and surrounded by a Divine Light, whose love, truth, and justice has pierced the darkness. The drops of Jupiter in my hair are cherish friends, big questions, and unexpected humor. I use this blog as a way to share some of the journey. Thanks for joining in, even if its for a moment. "The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world." John 1:9

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