A Gift To Myself: Atlas of the Heart

Don’t forget to give yourself something special this season. Who else is diving into Dr. Brené Brown’s latest book, Atlas of the Heart?

Atlas of the Heart by Brené Brown // www.WithTheGrains.com

A Gift To Myself: “Atlas of the Heart”

“Did you want that book gift-wrapped?” the bookstore clerk asked me.
“No, it’s just for me,” I replied.
“Well, you deserve a gift too,” she mused.

I’ve heard a lot of psychologists speaking recently about the importance of these small human-to-human interactions. Whether it’s the barista serving your daily coffee, a fellow dog owner at the dog park, or a moment thanking your mail carrier, these seemingly minuscule engagements are actually quite significant. They fill our cups, and their cumulative effect became painfully clear in the void of quarantining and social distancing.

Beyond research and discourse, the bookstore clerk was my real-life reminder of the warmth of these types of interactions. The exchange was also a reminder about the importance of small businesses, especially independent bookstores.

I have been anticipating Dr. Brené Brown’s new book ever since she first mentioned it on her podcasts. As the release date approached, I instinctually hovered over the Amazon product page with the zeal of a tailgating football fan.

Luckily, I paused and reflected. I didn’t need the book immediately, so instead, I ordered the book through my favorite local bookstore – Riverstone Books (woman-owned too!). Turns out, they got me the book pretty quickly too.

Do I say this to toot my own horn? Maybe a little bit. I am proud that I paused and took steps to support a business that I appreciate. More importantly, this is very much a reminder to myself to take the moment to pause, so buy local, and to enjoy the real-life connection that results. It’s also a reminder that it’s ok to give yourself something special this season.

Even though I didn’t want to waste the store’s gift wrap, I couldn’t resist a little ribbon and greenery to make this book feel special. If you need me, I’ll be nestled on my giant, green velvet couch, wrapped in a blanket, drinking hot chocolate, and diving into this book, which truly is a gift to myself. Let me know if you’re reading too.

Atlas of the Heart by Brené Brown // www.WithTheGrains.com

Atlas of the Heart by Brené Brown // www.WithTheGrains.com

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