By BrenÃ© Brown
* Note from Donnas Writing Studio re: Brene’s article. I saw this on “OWN” Oprah.com. It hit me like a brick falling from a building! I’ve lived with it forever. With my ex-husband, and unfortunately with my present. Everything in this world is “I”! Does anyone ever think about “we as a family” or “we’ll work it out! Don’t worry!” Instead it’s “I’m sick and tired of doing everything! The funny thing is my husband is disabled and relies on me for so many things. He can help himself, but I married him because we were a family, not one person! Just look at our new President! He’s more than a narcissistic, he’s a sociopath too! His world in “popularism”. “How popular can I be and make everyone believe my campaign promises before they turn on me!” Yet the “people’s” eyes will not open because they just don’t care about the truth, and how society has turned from “us” to “me”! Brene describes narcissistic behavior as well as could be. This is a must read and as we look around at the people among us, we’ll notice, narcissistic behavior needs to be addressed*
The author of Daring Greatly explains how a new definition of the self-obsessed can help us deal with them more effectively.
In 2011, a group of researchers conducted a computer analysis of the three decades of hit songs. The researchers reported a statistically significant trend toward narcissism and hostility in popular music. In line with their hypothesis, they found a decrease in usage of words such as we and us and an increase in I and me.
The researchers also reported a decline in words related to social connection and positive emotion, and an increase in words related to anger and antisocial behavior, such as hate or kill. Two of the researchers from that study, Jean Twenge and Keith Campbell, authors of the book The Narcissism Epidemic, argue that the incidence of narcissistic personality disorder has more than doubled in the United States in the last 10 years.
Relying on yet another fine saying from my grandmother, it feels like the world is going to hell in a handbasket.
Or is it? Are we surrounded by narcissists? Have we turned into a culture of self- absorbed, grandiose people who are only interested in power, success, beauty and being special? Are we so entitled that we actually believe that we’re superior even when we’re not really contributing or achieving anything of value? Is it true that we lack the necessary empathy to be compassionate, connected people?
If you’re like me, you’re probably wincing a bit and thinking, Yes. This is exactly the problem. Not with me, of course. But in general . . . this sounds about right!
It feels good to have an explanation, especially one that conveniently makes us feel better about ourselves and places the blame on those people. In fact, whenever I hear people making the narcissism argument, it’s normally served with a side of contempt, anger and judgment. I’ll be honest, I even felt those emotions when I was writing that paragraph.
Our first inclination is to cure “the narcissists” by cutting them down to size. It doesn’t matter if I’m talking to teachers, parents, CEOs or my neighbors, the response is the same: These egomaniacs need to know that they’re not special, they’re not that great, they’re not entitled to jack and they need to get over themselves. No one cares. (This is the G-rated version.)
Here’s where it gets tricky. And frustrating. And maybe even a little heartbreaking. The topic of narcissism has penetrated the social consciousness enough that most people correctly associate it with a pattern of behaviors that includes grandiosity, a pervasive need for admiration and a lack of empathy. What almost no one understands is how every level of severity in this diagnosis is underpinned by shame. Which means we don’t “fix it” by cutting people down to size and reminding folks of their inadequacies and smallness. Shame is more likely to be the cause of these behaviors, not the cure.
Labeling the problem in a way that makes it about who people are rather than the choices they’re making lets all of us off the hook: Too bad. That’s who I am. I find it far more helpful, and even transformative in many instances, to look at the patterns of behavior through the lens of vulnerability. For example, when I look at narcissism through the vulnerability lens, I see the same-based fear of being ordinary. I see the fear of never feeling extraordinary enough to be noticed, to be lovable, to belong or to cultivate a sense of purpose. Sometimes the simple act of humanizing problems sheds an important light on them, a light that often goes out the minute a stigmatizing label is applied.
This new definition of narcissism offers clarity and it illuminates both the source of the problem and possible solutions. I can see exactly how and why more people are wrestling with how to believe they are enough. I see the cultural messaging everywhere that says that an ordinary life is a meaningless life. And I see how kids that grow up on a steady diet of reality television, celebrity culture and unsupervised social media can absorb this messaging and develop a completely skewed sense of the world. I am only as good as the number of “likes” I get on Facebook or Instagram.
Because we are all vulnerable to the messaging that drives these behaviors, this new lens takes away the us-versus-those-damn-narcissists element. I know the yearning to believe that what I’m doing matters and how easy it is to confuse that with the drive to be extraordinary. I know how seductive it is to use the celebrity-culture yardstick to measure the smallness of our lives. And I also understand how grandiosity, entitlement and admiration-seeking feel like just the right balm to soothe the ache of being too ordinary and inadequate. Yes, these thoughts and behaviors ultimately cause more pain and lead to more disconnection; but when we’re hurting and when love and belonging are hanging in the balance, we reach for what we think will offer us the most protection.
The Journey of a Mind is a 10 part series covering how I got to this point. Join me for the first installment of this awesome journey.
Source: The Journey of a Mind Pt.1
You know the difference between creating content and inspired writing. Creating content is a process while inspiration is an explosion of passion.
Source: How to Capture Inspired Writing
An idea started by just a handful of women after the election of Donald Trump turned into something far greater than anyone could have imagined. Citizens across the country marched yesterday in defiance of Donald Trump. It was an unprecedented moment in American history. One I’m glad I was here to see. There’s never been […]
Create a LOGLINE! I’ve been trying to find a great post about writing a screen play. I do believe this has a lot of information for those interested.
By Scott Lorenz
If you want to sell your book to Hollywood it’ll help to think like Hollywood producers and directors. Since everybody is so busy these days you’ll have to boil down your book to a quick pitch that answers the question: What is your book about?
Think about it, do you have a one-sentence summation of your book to tell others? Do you have the main elements of the story composed together? If not, you need a logline.
A logline is a one or two sentence description that boils down the essential dramatic narrative in as succinct a manner as possible, says James Burbidge on Raindance.org
According to John Robert Marlow, author of Make Your Story a Movie: Adapting Your Book or Idea for Hollywood, “If you want to turn your book into a movie then understand that the people who represent and…
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Carrie Fisher, actress and author, was born just like any other baby, but this little girl was born to Hollywoods “pure Mom” Debbie Reynolds and “sometime dad” Eddie Fisher. She had a life like most children did in the late 1950’s and 1960’s, except her dad left her mom to marry Elizabeth Taylor, which left her with a single mom. Sounds like a lot of family’s today, except in those days, gossip was smeared all over the world, with no care to what it did to the kids. Nobody sued gossip rags, it was nothing to just open your door to a handful of cameras and reporters, from Debbie “I have nothing to say about Elizabeth and Eddie”. She raised her children the best way she could with delicate love and handling, but did Carries upbringing cause her problems with her Mom later in life, as in Carries book “Postcards from the Edge”? Did her problems with drugs get passed down from her father, due to his addictions?
Does it really matter how a person was raged and the problems they have later in life? We all have issues in our own families. Carrie was a true Hollywood icon. We loved her in “Shampoo” even though it was a few lines and scenes, the movie showed her sexuality towards Warren Beatty, she showed she could act and wasn’t just Debbie Reynolds daughter. Then the showcase movie “Star Wars” where no one could ever play Princess Leia, and no one could ever wear that “gold bikini” in “Return of the Jeti” either. She had wit and comedic element in “When Harry met Sally”, the movie could not have been as funny as it was without Carrie.
Every celebrity and icons in their own way have been paying their tributes all day long. I’m not a celebrity, and I never will be. I’m a simple woman who admired this woman Carrie Fisher. When you read that an icon died at such a young age of 60 from a heart attack, it makes me sad and angry. We’ve lost a mother, an actress, a brilliant author, a daughter and a sister to a heart attack. Just 1 day before getting on board the plane to bring her home from England, she shared moments with friends and admirers alike. She was loved by so many, she will not only be missed, but she was just beginning to get back in the public view and in Hollywood. My heart is aching and it goes out to her daughter Billie Lourd. She was one of a kind, brilliant, feisty, strong in every way, and wise among her young 60 years old.
Carrie “may the force be with you as you stream to the Stars ✨