WHY THIS BOOK? Susan’s stories and humour come through the book and it almost feels like she is sharing stories around the dinner table with obviously coffee and cookies.⁠

The chapter on showing up discusses self-compassion and the importance of it. This chapter reminds me of Brene Brown’s famous quote “If you are not in the arena getting your ass kicked, I am not interested in your feedback.” This chapter reminded me that I need to keep showing flaws and all to be there for people even if I don't have the answer. I remember the early conversations at TransLink when we were getting started and everyone had different opinions on where to begin on the EDI journey. I thought oh my gosh I don't have the answer immediately and I am the leader. Geez what an imposter. Again, having a wonderful network of people that I could chat with allowed me to find self-compassion and give me some grace and I took the time to understand the organization.⁠

The “Walking Your Why” chapter resonated with me as I am going through the Minerva Women (CHECK THEM OUT @MINERVABC) leading the way program and we went through an exercise of finding your values. I highly recommend you taking time to figure out your values: Living Into Our Values - Brené Brown (brenebrown.com)⁠

For me my values are equity, fun and connection and if I am living my values every day it is easier to make decisions.⁠

And the last bit of wisdom from Susan which is my favourite was the stories around “Grit versus Quit” page 182 to 187. You have to read it yourself.⁠


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WHY THIS BOOK? I really do love these types of books. Dorie Clark's formula of story, personal insight, recap and questions are brilliant. These types of books are my favourite because it gets me to think differently and hear stories from others. I will be talking about this book for a long time. ⁠

The title says it all and she breaks the book into three sections: White Space, Focus where it counts and Keeping the Faith. ⁠

Here are my thoughts:⁠

In the chapter "Saying No (Even to Good Things)" I was reminded how as humans there are a whole number of reasons we want to say yes to different things because we want to feel needed, FOMO or just our ego that feels good to be asked. Dorie shares how Derek Sivers (founder of CD baby) says it's either a hell yeah or it’s a no. ⁠

There are so many reasons why people say yes to different opportunities. For me, if I am speaking on a panel I want to know who is on the panel (no more all white folx), what the organization does and do I have the time. ⁠

I really liked how Dorie outlined these 4 steps and how you can go back and forth in-between during your career (hence the wave analogy…very clever). She does talk about being careful to not stagnate at any stage which of course made me think about my own career and how I want to drive meaningful impact.⁠

Now I am not an entrepreneur however I think about this as how I can enable and empower the people that I work with. The seven-year horizon is focused on long-term thinking and looking at the goals over a 7 year period. ⁠

I have been in my role at TransLink for a year and a half and feel we have just started on our equity, diversity and inclusion journey and I am always thinking about what an inclusive organization looks like in 5 or 10 years. Having some idea on a long term vision helps me work backwards on what needs to be done. Again the book is another must and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.⁠

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I have a special guest book reviewer, @judie_boroevich

"Thank you, Stephanie, for giving me a guest spot in your 52 Weeks of Cookies & Books series.⁠

I enjoy Brené Brown’s work, and I was looking forward to Atlas of the Heart, and I wasn’t disappointed.⁠

Brown’s research found that most of us will use only one of three words to describe what we are feeling: happy, sad or mad. In Atlas of the Heart, she provides us with 87 emotions we can use to more specifically describe what we are feeling, and in doing so, provides a framework for “…a common understanding of the language of emotion and human experience”.⁠

Each of the nine chapters is themed by ‘families’ of emotions.⁠

I gained many insights from reading this book and some of the most notable for me were:⁠

· Resentment is not an emotion of anger, but rather, of envy. Brown uses the example that if we see someone relaxing while we are working, and feel resentment toward them, we aren’t mad at them for resting, but rather, we are envious that they’re resting. This was thought provoking for me, and now when resentment shows up, I can now dig in and ask, what do I need to give myself more of, where is the envy coming from?⁠

· When scared or worried, Brown asks herself, “Will this issue be a big deal in five minutes? Five hours? Five days? Five months? Five years?” When worry creeps in for me (and it does!), I have started to ask these questions and it has relieved some anxiety for me.⁠

· Self-acceptance is key to belonging. Brown writes: “Because we can feel belonging only if we have the courage to share our most authentic selves with people, our sense of belonging can never be greater than our level of self-acceptance.” She also included research from interviews that she conducted with eighth graders, who were asked to describe the difference between ‘belonging’ and ‘fitting in’, and as one aptly described, “If I get to be me, I belong. If I have to be like you, I fit in”.⁠

I highly recommend Atlas of the Heart."⁠

-Judie Boroevich⁠

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