Tag Archives: Vulnerability

Willing to Handle the Truth? (And the New WOW)

If you conjured up the scene from A Few Good Men where Jack Nicholson’s character screams, “You can’t HANDLE the truth,” that is exactly what I was thinking of when considered being WILLING and this week’s post.

For me, the focus on our word “WILLINGNESS” wasn’t so much about being open to trying new things (God knows EVERYTHING in my life is new these days.)

It wasn’t about stubbornly holding on to stuff, because the last few months have been all about letting go.

For me, it was about being willing to dig beneath the surface to uncover TRUTH about how I really feel, what I truly want, where I want to be, and why I did (or didn’t do) certain things in my life.

This awakening revealed that I had mastered performing the politically or socially correct script. I knew what “played well” with different audiences and rolled with THAT instead of considering what Brenda, at her core, honestly felt.

It’s shocking to realize how well we can become at adapting or chameleon-izing our behaviors to avoid conflict, rocking the boat or setting off another person’s explosions.

I’m tired of carefully tip-toeing through this world.

If bombs go off in my wake, so be it.

I’d rather have real than fake.  And I’d rather be fully me that a watered down version of me to make everyone else happy.

But it takes a WILLINGNESS to be honest.

That’s off-putting at first, but ultimately, so freeing.

And here’s the upside: When you are really YOU, the people you attract to yourself are keepers.  They’re not being swept up in a performance; they’re connecting with the REAL YOU.  Good, bad or ugly – it’s REAL.

I will always enjoy fake eyelashes, the transforming power of makeup and the invaluable support of Spanx.

But for the stuff that matters in life, I want REAL.

And I’m willing to be honest enough to get it.

More on that and the new WOW coming up!:


The word JOY always reminds me of my friend Krissie Vincent, who can sing like Janis Joplin but uses her gifts to sing in church, too.  She used to sing this song: “I’ve got the joy, joy, joy…” and she milked it perfectly until it exploded into a jumping, rousing “Down in my heart!  Down in my heart! Down in my heart!”

You really had to experience it to know what I’m trying to say.

Joy is a jumping kind of emotion.

It’s when happiness spills over from the inside and activates your outsides.

Give me huge doses, please.

May we all jump for JOY this week!



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Give YOURSELF A Christmas Present

As I was EXPLORING through my photos, I gave myself a present when I came across my most favorite Christmas photo of all:

Brenda and Santa handThat is one perfectly round face, isn’t it?  (And I’m not talking about Santa’s…)

There’s something so vulnerable about the look on my face.  It’s like, “I know I’m supposed to be happy but I’m actually terrified.  Let me try to put a fake smile on and give a hand wave.”

That hand wave looks more like the Supremes, “Stop, in the name of love” choreography (with a lot less pizazz.)

Enough commentary on the photo.  What I found myself thinking was what I would tell little me if I could have whispered in her ear.

Don’t be afraid little one.  Bad things happen but you’ll survive them all.

Laugh more.  Don’t worry so much.

It’s impossible to make everyone happy.  Just keep choosing love and it’ll all work out.

Hug your daddy really tight.

Embrace your smarts more than your looks (aka not boys more than books.)

Yes, you’re too sensitive.  But it’s also your superpower.  Never let someone talk you out of your gut.

Trust that God loves you.  All the time.  And your good or bad performance doesn’t change that.

Stick up for yourself.  It’s OK to be your own best advocate.

Smoking isn’t cool.  Drinking isn’t glamorous.  You are cool and glamorous without them both.

Don’t trade in your Camaro for a Hyundai Excel.

Don’t be so hard on yourself.  Be as nice to you as you are to others.

There’s a compassion that wells up in me when I see that little round face and chocolate eyes.  And I need to have more of that toward myself TODAY. 

There may be more lines and a different hair color, but the same little soul that sat on Santa’s lap is still me today.

Me n Santa 2015

What would you say to little you?  Why not write yourself a little love note as a holiday present to yourself?

For this week’s WOW, it’s actually a present you can give yourself.  Here we go!:

So what is the first word that came to mind when you saw the question mark?

Christmas hugs and kisses to all of you.  Enjoy every cookie!



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