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Lessons from the Mental Hospital by Glennon Doyle Melton (Transcript)

Glennon Doyle Melton at TEDxTraverseCity

Full text of Glennon Doyle Melton’s talk: Lessons from the Mental Hospital at TEDxTraverseCity conference.

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Hi. I have been trying to weasel my way out of being on the stage for weeks. I am doing fine. But about a month ago I was up early panicking about this. And I watched in all of Tech Talk that Brené Brown did on vulnerability. Dr. Brown is one of my heroes. She is a shame researcher and I am a recovering bulimic, alcoholic and drug user. So I’m sort of a shame researcher too. It’s just that most of my work is done out in the field.

And Dr. Brown defined courage like this. She said, “Courage is to tell the story of who you are with your whole heart.” And that got me thinking about another one of my heroes Georgia O’Keeffe and how she said, “Whether you succeed or not is irrelevant. There is no such thing. Making the unknown known is what is important”.

So here I am to tell you the story of who I am with my whole heart and to make some unknowns known.

When I was eight-years-old, I started to feel exposed and I started to feel very very awkward. Every day I was pushed out of my house and into school all oily and fuzzy and conspicuous and to meet the other girls seemed so cool, and together and easy.

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