Brené Brown on Vulnerability and Home Run TED Talks (#100)

The Tim Ferriss Show with Brené Brown

Dr. Brené Brown (@BreneBrown) is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work. Brené’s 2010 TEDx Houston talk, The Power of Vulnerability, has been viewed more than 20 million times and is one of the top five most viewed TED talks in the world.

She has spent the past 13 years studying vulnerability, courage, worthiness, and shame. Brené is the author of two #1 New York Times bestsellers: Daring Greatly and The Gifts of Imperfection. Her brand-new book is titled Rising Strong. In it, she writes, “If we are brave enough, often enough, we will fall. This is a book about what it takes to get back up.”

She is also the founder and CEO for The Daring Way™, an organization that brings her work on vulnerability, courage, shame and worthiness to organizations, schools, communities, and families.

#100: Brené Brown on Vulnerability and Home Run TED Talks

Want to hear another podcast with a world class emotional intelligence practitioner? — Listen to my conversations with Josh Waitzkin. In this episode, we discuss meditation styles, morning rituals and why you should study the artists rather than the art critics (stream below or right-click here to download):

Episode 2: Joshua Waitzkin

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QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What short-term discomfort are you avoiding now? What is preventing you from taking action? Please let me know in the comments.

Scroll below for links and show notes…


Selected Links from the Episode

  • Watch Brené Brown’s TED Talks:

The Power of VulnerabilityListening to Shame

Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | Courage Works

Show Notes

  • How Brené Brown answers the question, “What do you do?” [7:38]
  • What makes a highly popular TED talk [1:45]
  • How Brené Brown prepares for TED talks [13:16]
  • Defining the terms “vulnerability” and “shame” (Learn more about how to deal with haters) [15:31]
  • Deconstructing shame from an evolutionary standpoint [24:31]
  • How to evaluate the question, “Are you daring greatly today?”[39:06]
  • Which schools of philosophy resonate most with Brown’s research? [46:31]
  • Misinterpretations of vulnerability [49:46]
  • How does vulnerability coexist with masculine virtues and traits? [55:31]
  • What are some daily practices or exercises to develop vulnerability? [1:02:46]
  • Brené Brown’s morning rituals [1:06:16]
  • Most gifted books [1:17:06]
  • Why she wrote Rising Strong [1:08:46]
  • Describing the method for collecting data for Rising Strong [1:09:41]
  • The ideal sequence for reading Brené Brown’s work [1:13:06]
  • The first thing that comes to mind when Brené Brown thinks of the word successful [1:14:31]
  • What purchase of $100 or less has most positively affected your life in recent memory? [1:15:51]
  • If you could have one billboard anywhere, where would it be and what would it say? [1:16:46]
  • Advice for Brené Brown’s thirty-year-old self [1:17:46]
  • Asks or requests for the listeners [1:19:19]

People Mentioned

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 900 million downloads. It has been selected for "Best of Apple Podcasts" three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it's been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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68 Replies to “Brené Brown on Vulnerability and Home Run TED Talks (#100)”

  1. Tim, I was recently introduced to your podcast and became instantly hooked. The interviews lead to feeling inspired, aspiring to be greater, and doing something about it: “be more awesome now” in other words. Thank you for providing access to some of the world’s most fascinating individuals!

    My question is regarding one of this week’s podcast sponsors. As a Canadian resident, I’m not able to invest with Wealthfront. While there are a number of robo-advisers popping up north of the boarder, would you or the team at Wealthfront recommend a particular one? Is Wealthfront anticipating an expansion to Canada?

    Many thanks!

  2. Hey Tim! I’m a behavior analyst and I wanted to share some info – although these terms are frequently confused, negative reinforcement and punishment are not the same principle.

    Reinforcement refers to increasing behavior and punishment refers to decreasing a behavior. As such, reinforce the can be positive and negative. Negative reinforcement involves removing something from an individual’s environment to increase a target behavior. An example of this would be allowing a child to get out of cleaning their room after they have thrown a tantrum. Because the parent has removed the initial demand of cleaning the room, the likelihood of the child throwing the tantrum in the future increase.

    Conversely, punishment refers to adding a stimulus to an environment to decrease a behavior. An example of this is spanking a child after they did something you didn’t want them to do. You’ve added the spanking to their environment and thus, they are less likely to do that in the future. Punishment is a very quick way to reduce behavior; however, it is not always the most desirable method because if the risk of emotional responding.

    Anyways – I really enjoy listening to your podcast. If you’re up for guest recommendations, check out Aubrey Daniels. He’s a leader in organizational behavior management.

    Becky Werle

    1. “spanking a child…[means] they are less likely to do that in the future,”

      at least in front of you, that is.

      Spanking is not, “a stimulus”, it’s purely “a punishment” which adds violence to trauma, reinforcing in the child’s mind that force is a solution, not a good solution, if health is a desire.

    2. “Punishment is…always the most desirable method…if [you can get away with it].”

      Let us take the example whereby, after you punished someone, that they immediately grew to ten times your size.

      Would you initially punish this person?

      And the answer is an emphatic no!

      The only thing we can say about punishment (id est, spanking) is that the relationship is so one-sided, that no one will stop you, and further, if you still believe in 2015, that,”spanking a child…is a very quick way to reduce behavior” you need to start learning to cry.

      Imagine after 9/11, that we dedicated the rest of September, 2001, to be a Month of Tears.

      A Month of Just Sadness and Grief.

      By October 1, 2001, We probably would not have felt the need kill over a one-million, displace over ten-million, bomb away several weddings, and endure the degradation and humiliation of having to deal with the Joint Chiefs of Staff personal vendetta against an American Hero, murdered by his own brothers, in a, “Fratricide”, NFL Football Star Pat Tillman, who knew too much TRUTH – so the Joint Chiefs of the American Defense Establishment, “spanked Pat”.

      The Joint Chiefs of the American Defense Establishment, consciously murdered, the only POSITIVE of the entire debacle; The Transcendence of Ignorance, ego-death.

      Pat would have come back to US and we would have listened.

      Not SO with The American WAY. Spank the Bastard, its, “is a very quick way to reduce behavior”.

      In actual FACT, what ‘spanking’ does is CREATE an ALTER in the child; whereby they ALTER their AUTHENTICITY to cater to adult fears of retribution.

      Spanking does not END or Reduce destructive or negative behavior, and negative behavior is destructive. S[panking ALTERS destructive or negative behavior, and usually in the WRONG direction. IMHO

      I still love you Becky, just not what you believe IN. So our Religions are in conflict. It’s known as a Schism. One of us has to SHIFT.

  3. Tim- Big fan. I’m a former Air Force pilot (combat vet) and investment banker, now a fee only money manager. Question/idea about Wealthfront (I agree they are massively disruptive in a sector BEGGING for disruption), The biggest barrier to long term investment success is investor behavior. Ive tried education, but it only works for a small %. Last weeks bloodletting was the most recent proof. I have ideas…..wealthfront is operating outside the normal channels, and has an opportunity to separate investors (and their emotions) from their money. I’m not looking for any promotion or pr, I just want to change the world by keeping people from doing dumb stuff with their hard-earned money. Simple right? I want to share my ideas with you in a brief telephonic or email conversation.


  4. Holy shnikes! Exactly what I needed to hear today. Just turned 38 today and needed a bit of encouragement like this to get in gear. Huge thanks!

    1. Thank you Brene for the solid advice and taking us to school concerning shame and guilt. It is much appreciated! I know my comment will not offset all your past negative comments, but I think you are a total badass.

      Tim, nice impersonation of Pavel!

  5. Great podcast. I love Brene Brown and her work, so I’m very happy to hear you interview her. Someone else I thought would be interesting for you to interview with be Shonda Rhimes, whom Brene mentioned in the podcast. There’s someone who has created an entire television empire, and is certainly a world class performer in the entertainment/media sphere. Would love to see her perspective on things and practices.

  6. “He or she that is willing to be the most uncomfortable is not only the bravest but rises the fastest.” I really enjoyed this interview, particularly when you spoke about vulnerability and masculinity. Thank you so much, Brene. Thank you, Tim, for your great questions!

  7. On Vulnerability

    An Excerpt from the book on Grandfather’s lessons on love, loss and the gifts of life by Daniel Gottlieb.

    Give Kindness a Chance

    Dear Sam,

    Your vulnerability, Sam, along with your radiant smile, will likely bring out people who want to be good, who want to help, who feel generous.

    In the animal kingdom, vulnerability can bring out aggression in other animals. This sometimes happens with humans also. But I have found that, instead, my vulnerability brings out the best in people. And I have discovered that when people are kind and helpful, it makes them happy. Sometimes, I almost feel guilty about this, because people who appear to be “normal” and independent don’t get to see this soft side of others.

    What about you, Sam? I wonder whether you will be able to expose the soft side of yourself. Often, we try every way possible to avoid showing our vulnerability. Which can involve a lot of pretending. But only when you stop pretending you’re brave or strong, you allow people to show the kindness that’s in them.

    Let me tell you a story.

    Last month, on a very windy day, I was returning from a lecture I had given to a group in Fort Washington. I was beginning to feel unwell. I was feeling increasing spasms in my legs and back and became anxious as I anticipated a difficult ride back to my office. Making matters worse, I knew I had to travel two of the most treacherous high-speed roads near Philadelphia – the four-lane Schuylkill Expressway and the six-lane Blue Route.

    You’ve been in my van, so you know how it’s been outfitted with everything I need to drive. But you probably don’t realize that I often drive more slowly than other people. That’s because I have difficulty with body control. I’m especially careful on windy days when the van can be buffeted by sudden gusts. And if I’m having problems with spasms or high blood pressure, I stay way over in the right hand lane and drive well below the speed limit.

    When I’m driving slowly, people behind me tend to get impatient. They speed up to my car, blow their horns, drive by, stare at me angrily, and show me how long their fingers can get. (I don’t understand why some people are so proud of the length of their fingers, but there are many things I don’t understand.) Those angry drivers add stress to what already is a stressful experience of driving.

    On this particular day, I was driving by myself. At first, I drove slowly along back roads. Whenever someone approached, I pulled over and let them pass. But as I neared the Blue Route, I became more frightened. I knew I would be hearing a lot of horns and seeing a lot of those long fingers.

    And then I did something I had never done in the twenty-four years that I have been driving my van. I decided to put on my flashers. I drove the Blue Route and the Schuylkyll Expressway at 35 miles per hour.

    Now…Guess what happened?

    Nothing! No horns and no fingers.

    But why?

    When I put on my flashers, I was saying to the other drivers, “I have a problem here – I am vulnerable and doing the best I can.” And everyone understood. Several times, in my rearview mirror I saw drivers who wanted to pass. They couldn’t get around me because of the stream of passing traffic. But instead of honking or tailgating, they waited for the other cars to pass, knowing the driver in front of them was in some way weak.

    Sam, there is something about vulnerability that elicits compassion. It is in our hard wiring. I see it every day when people help me by holding doors, pouring cream in my coffee, or assist me when I put on my coat. Sometimes I feel sad because from my wheelchair perspective, I see the best in people. But those who appear strong and invulnerably typically are not exposed to the kindness I see daily.

    Sometimes situations call for us to act strong and brave even when we don’t feel that way. But those are a few and far between. More often, there is a better pay-off if you don’t pretend you feel strong when you feel weak, or pretend that you are brave when you’re scared. I really believe the world might be a safer place if everyone who felt vulnerable wore flashers that said, “I have a problem and I’m doing the best I can. Please be patient!”



  8. Thank you so much for this episode with Brene! I’ve read her book Daring Greatly and also had the pleasure of hearing her speak at the Massachusetts Conference for Women a few years ago. This was truly a perfect conversation – I am inspired by both of you individually and listening to you discuss topics that are so important to the core of what prevents many of us from working toward their goals has given me a real boost to get off the couch.

    thanks again-


  9. Thank you so much for this episode! I’ve read Daring Greatly, watched her ted talk and had the pleasure of hearing Brene speak at the Massachusetts Conference for Women a few years ago.

    I’ve been inspired by the two of you individually and through this conversation have really been given a boost to get off the couch and get busy with working toward the life I’d rather be living!

    Thank you for the work you do – I’ve just started to read the Four Hour Work Week!

  10. I’m avoiding telling my fiance that I can’t marry her now. I proposed while I was drunk. Yes, I’m a p.o.s.

    Hey Tim, can I pitch a startup idea to you? I live in SF, but phone or email correspondence is fine. Looking for partner/ investors for an app that’s going to piss a lot of people off. Already talked to the guys at Yeti (mobile app development in soma) and they said it has more legs than the current players in that space who just received $20 mil in funding. Thanks

  11. I’m so grateful to have stumbled upon this talk, thanks for lifting her to our awareness Tim. Brene’s insights were right on. Man I needed to hear that; the spirit moves. Thank you so much.

    Peace be with you,


  12. Hi Tim,

    Wonderful message!

    I just wrote my 96th eBook. I feel happy because I have dove into my uncomfortable zone for the past 8 weeks, writing and publishing a 6,000 word eBook every single day. Today I did what I’d been resisting for a while; I stopped converting 1 eBook to audio and paperback every day. This was a big time sap, but it was a super uncomfortable decision for me. I feel better already 😉

    Thanks for the inspiring share.


  13. Tim, thanks for another great interview. The parts I found most interesting were the distinctions between shame and guilt, and between perfectionism and the pursuit of excellence.

    The parenting approach you describe Josh following are pretty mainstream: praising efforts instead of results (which as a business exec I found counter-intuitive), not labeling kids (even with “smart”, “strong”, “pretty”)… and even refraining from saying “I’m proud of you” and instead saying “you must be proud of yourself”. They all lead to fostering internal motivation instead of seeking external validation.

    One great book that exposed me to these parenting approaches is NurtureShock (by Po Bronson & Ashley Merryman). I’m also a huge fan of the program from Amy McCready at Positive Parenting Solutions ( I also really liked the book Screamfree Parenting (by Hal Edward Runkel).

    As always, putting these guidelines into practice is the hardest part. Still, knowing what to do is a necessary first step. If you’ve got kids or are planning to, these resources are a must IMO.

  14. Wow! Never thought I’d hear Brene Brown on your show. So glad I did. Stellar interview Tim. Great questions and I hope your perfectionism doesn’t inhibit you from being vulnerable!

  15. This was a great podcast, thanks Tim!

    It would also be good if you could interview somebody with a scientific / analytical mind who claims to have had an experience of enlightenment or awakening.

    Can i suggest Gary Weber. He was successful in the business world as the VP to a large research based organisation, and has reportedly stopped most of his problematic thought streams after over 20 years and 30,000 hours of meditation.

    Read more about him here:


  16. fantastic! I’ve been looking for an interview with Brene of a great quality for a long time (after I read Daring greatly – one of my favorite books ever). Have not yet listened, but I’m sure you did a great job Tim.

    Thanks for all the work!

    Best from New Village (Poland)

  17. This topic/discussion is one the most important ones I can imagine. Courage is the driving force for getting things done. The more courage exhibited the more personal power we possess. The more personal power we possess, the greater we can serve others—no matter our gift we give to the world. Amazing episode and discussion! Thank you

  18. I love your show. I hear it everyday while going to work and it´s so motivating! Thanks for this exciting interview as well

  19. I love your show. I hear it everyday while going to work. It is very motivating and keeps my brain active. Thanks for this interview as well

  20. I am avoiding informing my long-term broker that we’re moving our 401(k) over to a new company.

    Being a pleaser is the problem

  21. You asked what short term discomfort am I avoiding; well here it is:

    I’m avoiding making calls to grad student advisors for a degree which I have zero background in. What’s preventing me from doing so is a fear of asking the wrong questions of the wrong people and exposing my ignorance of the process.

  22. Prison Inmates:

    What Brené said about inmates was so true as I’ve experienced it. (She mentioned they have a lot of shame but not a lot of guilt.)

    I volunteer at a Federal prison once a week (teaching/mentoring and preparing them to re-enter society. About 95% of them will be our neighbors once again, so I figured it’d be a good idea to help out income way. If I can help one person, the ripple effect will be substantial in terms of future victims and societal and justice systems costs too.)

    So, I shared this concept with them about Guilt (I did something wrong: necessary) VS. Shame (I am something wrong/there is something [intrinsically] wrong with me: harmful)…and, I kid you not, they ALL stared at me dumbfounded. They had never thought of it before and many had conflated the meanings. All of them (several dozen) were admittedly, extremely shame-filled, but (strangely to me) the guilt they felt seemed insufficient for the crimes they’d committed. The empathy still wasn’t there because of a lack of guilt and because that was viewed as “weakness” to them. There was just a fundamental misunderstanding.

    The results of sharing this concept? They found great relief that any guilt they felt was important, necessary, and needed to move forward and do better–and also they felt that they could (start to) set aside their shame and not be tied to it. This is redemptive and potent stuff, indeed. That was such a microcosm “test”, but it was amazing to witness.

    The more broadly these concepts are disseminated the better the world will be. Truly. Thanks to Brené for bringing these to light and to you, Tim, for considering them worthy of your audience.

  23. Tim, perhaps the difference betwieen “I am enough” and proving oneself isn’t in the “how” but the “why” do we live? I’ll reference the incredible book “The Compound Effect” where he says that the only way we will EVER effect real change in our lives is to understand our WHY. It goes beyond “I am enough”. I believe there are people that come from a place of whole-hearted living and are by nature very CURIOUS! We’re not driven to prove anything to anyone other than this is who we are and if we are not doing something to the best of our ability, it isn’t great enough. If we aren’t climbing to the top of the tallest mountain to see the view and feel the wind in our hair we aren’t really living. No amount of psychotherapy can prove otherwise (so I’ve discovered.) in other words, allow me to quote the great Hillel: “If I am not for myself, who will be for me? If I am for myself, what am I? If not now, when?” We are created to live up to our potential. We are made to search for meaning. I am enough is an anthem that allows us to do and be all of that, even all of that, without judgement even of ourselves…. (Humbly spoken as this is a matter Dear to my heart.) swift journeying my fellow curious traveler…

  24. I am really enjoying listening to the podcast while I ride my bike back and forth to work. Lots of interesting take away. One that stood out is to reward my children’s efforts and focus less on the result. My daughter has a lot of difficulty if she does not win.

    Secondly, thank you for having more woman on the podcast. As a father of two daughters, I want them to know that women can be very successful.

    1. Another great interview. I found the most interesting insight to be the one relating to perfectionists and the art of being present (work vs. family life).

      I’ve really enjoyed listening to these podcast and following these discussions as well. Thanks Tim! It’s exciting to imagine that these topics unite people around the world to share ideas and hopefully to change their own and each others lives.

      I live in Finland myself and it’s nice also to hear stories from Europe 🙂 Best,


  25. Wow, what a great conversation. I am familiar with Brené Brown, Initially from SuperSoulSunday/Oprah, then from her much-viewed TEDx talk, and immediately read her “Perfection” book.

    Your conversation with her added to my understanding of her work. I always appreciate your characteristic candidness, and she returned it in kind. I often refer to your podcast with friends and in casual conversations. This one especially touched me when topic of feminization of Men came up, and also about ‘oversharing’ , it’s truly a pandemic.

    great conversation Tim!

  26. Great podcast Tim. I’d be curious to know (if you do any follow-up) what you and Brené make of the relationship between vulnerability and ‘coolness’. It strikes me that the latter is premised precisely on the presentation of some form of perfection, in the pursuit of some form of status. I’ve generally read that as the manifestation of some form of insecurity, although perhaps that’s a facile and lazy approach. Do you think the two can co-exist? Who in your opinion might make for interesting examples?

  27. A great book that helped me deal with a lot of shame was Robert Glover’s “No More Mr. Nice Guy”. It’s over 10 years old at this point, but I still give it to friends regularly. Excellent read, especially for guys who struggle with people pleasing and personal shame.

  28. Thank you Tim and Brene it was a phenomenal podcast.

    I thought the two of you played off each other beautifully. There were several very nuanced points made in this interview that gave me a deeper understanding. They were:

    1. The difference between guilt and shame and the different way that each are framed in your mind – I like the distinction between viewing your behaviour as an aberration rather than completely tying it to your ego and sense of self worth. I think this is a very important distinction that can have huge positive implications if properly understood. How guilt is like a moral compass that brings you back to your core beliefs and shame is like a chain the binds you to a prison of self sabotage.

    2. The other point was the distinction between perfectionism and striving for excellence. Particularly the part distinguishing the underlying motivations behind people at Silicon Valley. Being a sportsmen who wants to succeed at a high level this is an immensely important distinction for mental wellbeing that goes beyond just performance.

    I very much look forward to reading her books and gaining greater insight on these points and how they relate to drive or motivation.



  29. “Damnit Tim, that’s the second stegosaurus in the cave in one week!” (25:02 🙂

    But seriously, another great show, very powerful and timely. I’m going to give this one another listen, lots of profound thoughts to wrap my brain around.

    Do you ever get tired of all the compliments?

  30. Brene Brown is one of my favorite people on this planet. It’s so cool that you had an interview with her! And it’s always good to remind myself of what my fears are and what I’m avoiding at the moment…

    Big thanks for the insightful conversation!

  31. “Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor, the enemy of the people. It will keep you cramped and insane your whole life, and it is the main obstacle between you and a shitty first draft. I think perfectionism is based on the obsessive belief that if you run carefully enough […] you won’t have to die. The truth is that you will die anyway and that a lot of people who aren’t even looking at their feet are going to do a whole lot better than you, and have a lot more fun while they’re doing it.”

    — Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird

  32. Hands down the best podcast episode I have ever heard. Your ability to listen to experts like Brene,synthesize the information and give insightful commentary is amazing. You’re the man Tim.

  33. As usual great podcast! One small correction..negative reinforcement and punishment are not the same. Negative reinforcement is really escape learning. Whatever turns off a negative stimulus is heavily reinforced. A lab model would be a rat who learns to press a lever to turn off the electric current to the bottom of his cage by pressing a lever. The rat will push the lever until he dies. A very common misunderstanding.

    Also – I’ve spent the last 30 plus years treating anxiety disorders and the comments made at the end of the podcast are exactly the advice we now give our clients. It is not the anxiety that is the problem but our unwillingness to accept anxiety and our efforts to escape anxiety that cause the problem. The heart of current treatments for anxiety revolve around acceptance of the anxiety and living the life you want despite the anxiety.

    Keep up the good work.


  34. Thanks for bringing Brene on, Tim. I have been wondering when I might hear her voice on your show. I think her work is so important, as is yours, so thank you for the incredible podcast.

    Recommendation for interview: Matt Rutherford, explorer and non-profit organization Exec Director. Check out his 310-day, record breaking solo-sail, non-stop around North and South America at Also check out his non-profit, Ocean Research Project and, if you have some expendable time, check out his documentary Very down to earth and funny guy, with humble beginnings, who has fought to combat fear every step of the way. Talk about being comfortable with being uncomfortable.

  35. Wonderful podcast and great questions and discussion. I have read Daring Greatly and it is fantastic. I didn’t really hear an answer to your question to Brene concerning what sorts of practices or simple acts someone who is wanting to try more vulnerability could do or use. Any further thoughts on this???

  36. Tim,

    I often say to my pup, “I don’t understand, but you get cuter and cuter. How are you cuter?!” I feel similarly to your podcast. It get’s better and better, how is it better?!

    (That said and episode 2 with Josh Waitzkin is still of my favorites because The Art of Learning is of the top five books that changed my life (and I listened to it on audio whilst hiking, so thanks for that!)

    Anyway, I keep a copy of “Daring Greatly” in my lines eye whilst working as a reminder to “choose courage over comfort.”

    This episode’s been out for a week and I’ve already referenced it to friends, colleagues, mentors, and investors countless times.The discussion on vulnerability vs over-sharing is of tremendous value to… everyone! “Vulnerability minus boundaries does not equal vulnerability.” Ahhh! So good. So true.

    I’ll no doubt listen to it multiples times as it is packed with gems.



    P.S. I know you interview awesome people, full stop. But I want to throw out an added thanks for being so conscientious in your varied and balanced view of excellence. Pavol, Josh, Margaret, Amanda, Robert Rodriguez… So varied and so outstanding! Anyway, it particularly means a lot to me to have so many women in your que. Massive thanks for it all.

  37. Josh Waitzkin’s parenting style is straight from Dr. Carol Dweck’s research and book, “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success.” Highly recommend it.

  38. I really recommend that you inerview Carol Dweck author of the book Mindset the new psychology of success. She covers all the things you mentioned about your friend raising his child, why it is good to reward the effort etc. She is one of the most succecful in this field. Thank you for all your work Tim.

  39. They just keep coming! Some profound nuggetissimmi here. My notebook grabbed at the challenging question: “what are your holes in your self worth”, “SHUT UP AND LISTEN”, courage shout eat up comfort (my evolution of the words) and so beautifully put on success: “be clear that your ladder is leaning against the right building”.

  40. Great podcast Tim! I was super happy when I saw you were having her on. I am curious about her TED talk success though. It seems somewhat accidental and she talks about how she didn’t want many people to watch it and didn’t prepare for it, but it’s still one of the most watched TED talks, what is that about. Stuff like that fascinates me. Like some people can prepare for months and others just wing it and their’s is better.

  41. Gracias Tim por esta entrevista. Realmente ha tocado de sensibilidad impresionante. Lo cierto es que ha abierto nuevas formas de analizar el temas del abuso en todas sus formas. De nuevo gracias!

  42. Hi Tim,

    I wanted to give support/evidence to one of your points because I was so fascinated with, and really moved by, your interview with Brené. At about 1:00:30, Brené mentions the “equation for badassery”, and the combination of typically feminine traits being essential in truly bad-ass men (like they “guys vs men” conundrum you mention).

    To that end, you’ve probably come across Dr. Robert Winston (, but as a reminder he’s a fascinating British scientist and Renaissance Man who did a study on masculinity and femininity about… 12 years ago?

    As one small part of the study, which became a BBC production, he asked a variety of people to carry out routine tasks. It’s relevant because one seriously tough man, a London boxing coach, scored the highest in some femininity traits. The one I remember is him cooing and playing with a baby as he changed a diaper. To him, it was totally natural to just be human with this baby, but many of the others, both men and women, didn’t really interact at all. This has always stuck with me, especially as I change diapers of my own. (WAIT, diapers of my own children, I should say.)

    Next, an apology – I haven’t been able to find that clip. If you’re interested, let me know and I’ll have a genuine hunt for you.

    Finally, the usual. I appreciate all you do, thank you. Maybe more significant, my wife recently sent me a quote of yours that was on Collective Evolution, “Conditions are never perfect…”. She wasn’t aware that the quote’s author was the same as the 4HWW and 4HC’s author, but I thought you’d be happy to know that your message is spreading.

    Stay good,


  43. Hey Tim, Thanks for this episode. I’ve read your books before, but this is my first podcast episode. Can you please provide the link to the goggles that Brene Brown said she uses? I know you mentioned aquasphere. But I was interested in the ones she was talking about, which don’t leave marks under the eye.

  44. Yikes! 4:40 of ads. Love the show, have nothing negative to say… but I don’t think 4:40 is the answer to the question, how long should the starting advertising be? I am happy to tolerate a few minutes, at a point I fast forward, and a later point I think GAAAAH, this is ridiculous and today (after many months listening to previous podcasts) post on the blog.

  45. Timmy Tim Tim!

    What if we thought about being enough like this: it because I am enough and of so much worth that I am not going to let this opportunity pass me by, I’m not going to wear myself out…and for what? I’m going to take care of my needs and dreams because I am acting from my worth, not to obtain it. Accomplishing rest because I truly am immeasurable. And if I decide to pursue something it won’t have to be for some status but precisely because its purely enjoyable and worth my time.

    Not here yet but I hope it resonates. I felt like when you were talking about your dog and encouraging him it was because you saw his potential and worth and not the other way around. It made relax…for a min haha. That when we are agonizing to get our act together or trying to be more than just ordinary…an outsider can change our whole perspective by seeing our humanity and potential. Dignity. In this case you seeing his dogginess? Inner dog worth? Idk. Anyway, so we don’t squander our potential but are never having to earn our belonging by being someone we just do not need to be.

    -Much love man! We are so freakin indebted to you and your work.

  46. Hey, I really loved this episode and the talk of vulnerability.

    I almost deleted my first blog post before listening to this episode, then instead of deleting it – I published it!

    So, thanks guys!

  47. Hey, I really loved this episode and the talk of vulnerability.

    I almost deleted my first blog post before listening to this episode, then instead of deleting it – I published it!

    So, thanks guys!

  48. Thank you so much for the podcast. You will never know how this uplift other people (including me) spirit. Please continue this and more power!

  49. Thank you Tim, awesome as always, getting better at interviewing everyday! Brene B. is amazing and has a supreme thrust of energy about her herself.

  50. @4:34 “Shame is easily understood as the fear of disconnection”, Scholar, Brené Brown, Vulnerability Researcher.

    First off: Shame : IS : loss of pride.

    Shame is NOT a part of being understood (“Shame is easily understood”), shame makes no sense. Shame can not be understood (id est, Shame is not a part of understanding). Shame can be acknowledged, though not learned.

    Fear is completely unrelated to connection, rather ‘fear’ : IS : loss of reason.

    Fear has no reason, since fear unreasonable when one knows. Fear is without a base in sanity or reason. Fear connects to no one and nothing while connection connects us to others, which is not fearful but joyful, yet even so, Humiliation precedes both shame and fear.

    Let me Explain : It all Begins with SELF Doubt and loss of Wholeness.

    Self Doubt ‘opens the door’ to further EGO loss – beginning with Humiliation, an ego trait.

    Self-Doubt, which is NOT an ego-trait-behavior, but a part of Honesty, which is connected to Wholeness, permits us to remain with ourself, though were doubtful what to do. However, if we continue to doubt our mind ourselves, it will lead to a loss of innocence, which is our ‘Natural State’.

    IT IS Humiliation, which is loss of Innocence, which leads to Shame.

    Shame is loss of Pride which results in inner UNknowing OR Confusion. Pride – not worthiness – is essential to remove self-doubt, since pride is a Self-reflection – it is a positive trait to know thyself.

    (Professor Brown’s use of : ‘Worthiness’ is mouthiness without concern for others. To believe one has ‘worth’ does not mean one has personal pride. Worthiness is in contrast to Others, whereas Pride is Personal and does not need the reflection of others. Worthiness requires contrast with others which involves the observation of others, to display one’s worth and know it to be true or worthy.)

    ‘The fear of disconnection’ is ‘gobbledygook speech’ intended to convey an educated, serious meaning, when in fact, to disconnect is to avoid fear, since total loss of connection is not fearful it’s dismal – distraught sadness.

    Confusion precedes Guilt and offers loss of Respect, since an innocent perception is healing and Respectful of Wholeness. Respect with Guidance would lead us back to Wholeness of Purpose and back to Health. However, in Confusion were more likely to blame ourselves, which is both unhealthy and disrespectful, and in this process, it makes ourselves Guilty, opening the door to Guilt proper.

    Guilt is loss of Identity which leads to Uncertainty. To be unCertain, is to not know or identify with who you really are. To be unknown to yourself is to enter the unconscious, and to be unconscious is not to know where one is – and it is this that is the source of fright. To be lost, is To be frightful, and will lead to A State of Fear.

    Fear is loss of Reason, since fear is unreasonable given our Whole Mind which offers Certainty.

    ‘Shame’ is not related to ‘fear’ on it’s own, accept through : “Blame” : and then ONLY through : ‘Guilt’ : and only after ‘Guilt’ would ‘Fear’ arrive, however, first would be loss of ‘Wholeness’, then Loss of ‘Innocence’, then, loss of ‘Pride’, then, loss of ‘Respect’, which follows loss of ‘Identity’, until finally, loss of ‘Reason’.

    ‘Disconnection’ plays no role whatsoever in Fear.

    ‘Disassociation’ plays a role in fear.

    ‘Disconnection’ like ‘connection’ has to do with ‘struggle and encouragement’; to stay connected to those we love requires ‘struggle and encouragement’.

    Shame is personal blame, end of story!

    OK, So what is the proper response: First off : “Shame” : is not an originator : “Self Doubt” : IS :.

    And if we go from ‘Self Doubt’ to Self-Forgiveness we avoid entirely ‘the net of The Ego’ – and thus at all times stay comfortably in love with Our little elf Self.

    So, if we want to avoid the ego’s heated and hated responses which offer personal degradation or humiliation and further stop adding to it, with: shame, blame, guilt, and fear, we can with Spiritual Guidance, go directly from Self-doubt to Self-forgiveness and avoid entirely The Ego.

    Hoorah! – a Path Home without the ego as Guide!

    Additionally, by going to Self-FORGIVENESS directly from Self Doubt – we don’t need an external teacher (our ego or anyone else’s ego), just our inner guide, our conscience.

    The other added advantage of going directly to FORGIVENESS in all instances of personal trauma from doubt, is that learning is not required, but rather, unlearning – that which we need to forgive.

    And when Forgiveness is Complete, it offers unlearning into Grace. IMHO.

    The Five Fingers of Hate: from Virgin to Whore:

    1. Loss of Innocence, from loss of Wholeness (Virginity) to Doubt.

    2. Loss of Pride, from Loss of Innocence to Shame.

    3. Loss of Respect, from Shame to Confusion.

    4. Loss of Identity, from Uncertainty to fear.

    5. Loss of Reason, from fear to madness.

    1. In paragraph five, i left out the seventh word in the very very first line; i would like to insert that word of : ‘isness’ : with additional commentary now, yet this comment board does not offer me the ‘space’ so i’d like to recommend to TF Staff, that they adopt a more progressive edit board which includes both: and edit section and a ‘more below’ section, where more lengthily prose can be included, yet at the same time not fully-included, and thus, occulted.

      OK, the word i left out was: “IS” : . IS would be placed between, ‘fear and unreasonable’.

      Ergo, the fifth paragraph, line one, should read, “Fear has no reason, since fear [is] unreasonable when one knows.

      In further cogitating upon the subject of Vulnerability, which is an ability, i should like to add, that Vulnerability is a Strength, it takes effort to learn to be Vulnerable, in other words we’re not born Vulnerable of Mind, Vulnerable of Body, YES! For sure. Vulnerability of mind takes practice in speculate thought, the purpose of education.

      What’s odd and thus strange, and outside the box of my world of thinking, is that Brené Brown, Vulnerability researcher, believes that, as stated in her Ted Bio, “…our vulnerabilities…[are also our]…imperfections”.

      This is a very sad statement, spoken in understood shame, that “…our vulnerabilities…[are also our]…imperfections”.

      True Vulnerability as opposed to foolishness, requires and demands continuous strength, this is known as Fortitude: continuous exhibition of courage in spite of Self-Doubt.

      What vulnerability teaches is that it is possible to have both: Self Doubt and Move-Forward in Wholeness’, this is of course the Course in preparation for ego annihilation.

      Brené Brown, Vulnerability researcher, is in my opinion not interested in ego annihilation, when she states, “we are worthy [of] love”.

      This statement “we are worthy [of] love”, is just plain and simply wrong.

      We are love.

      And thank God for that!!

  51. I love this interview. Her BRAVE-ing idea is great. I am sure you have heard her interview by Krista Tippett at Have you thought about interviewing Krista Tippett. Her interviewing skills are amaze balls! I don’t know what would be better- if you interviewed her or if she interviewed you( probably the former way since she would have to bleep to many F-bombs). Thanks for motivating, in-depth interviews. I still haven’t sorted our small business, but when I do, it will have to do with your books and podcasts.

  52. Thank you for this amazing interview! I used some dialogue from it in a recent talk I gave to a room full of folks as part of a Lean-In luncheon series in our small town of Alamosa, CO. I made a personal recording of the talk so my friend and mentor could listen since she currently lives in CA. So many other folks who wanted to attend but couldn’t because of other commitments have expressed lament in missing it. I am writing to ask you for your permission to publish my talk on a You Tube channel. In the talk I do give you credit for everything I shared from your podcast. Thanks for your consideration on this, and thank you again for such a great, meaningful interview!! (If you’d like to hear the talk, it’s 30 minutes long… not sure you can carve out the time, but just offering in case you want to verify content.)

  53. Hey Tim, I’ve been a long time fan and have read all your books. Listening to Brene talk about being vulnerable I dont know if you have ever told us if the two friends for whom you wrote the 4HWW, read the book and if it had any impact on their lives. Just wanted to know. Love from Colombia

  54. We need to dare to leave our comfort zones and research how to make personal protective equipment for our friends, family, and our local hospital personnel

    There is an open source Covid medical supply group on Facebook. Although no one seems to want to organize it you can search the group posts to find most of what you are looking for

    It’s better to do something than nothing, even if it means failing along the way towards completing the goal

  55. Listening to all the Brené Brown episodes on your blog page, and just ‘met’ Mary Karr on an episode yesterday. Love these kick-ass Texan Women. Great topics…great guests. Many Thanks Tim!