Shame - Shame and more Shame
A quick look at shame allows us to view a slight amount of embarrassment caused by things such as tripping over and farting in public. But if we examine it deeply and begin connecting with our own source of shame, we suddenly get the desire to run and hide. Why, because that’s what we instinctively do when we hit real shame – we wish to stop it from being seen.
I have a confession, up until the age of 25 when I moved in with my first partner, I slept with the light on. And it wasn't because I was afraid of the dark it was because in the quiet hours of the night I was terrified of my thinking. Leaving the light on meant if I woke when the rest of the house was still asleep, I could pick up a book and avoid thinking about the thing that frightened me the most; something I now recognise as my Shame.
On gaining a partner I didn’t resolve this Shame, I simply used my relationship as a massive source of distraction and for the next 26 years this was a relatively effective solution. My Shame use to pop up unwanted every now and then but mostly I was able to keep it at bay by not looking and busily going about my life.
A few months ago, to my great reluctance, I recognised that Shame needed to be tackled as part of the process which is Genius You and as I am the lead guinea pig, I knew that this journey had to begin with me.
So I invited Shame to become fully present in my life. To stop hiding in the shadows and blindspots and to show it's supposedly ugly face with the belief that if I could see it I could resolve it.
This is what I discovered on this uncomfortable and sometimes disgusting journey.
1. I've heard that fear is the opposite of love. But I now disagree. Fear is the result of not knowing our magnificence. Shame is the opposite of love because it is the absence of love. It is loves kryptonite. It weakens and violates love by the creation of an untruth that often manifests into a behaviour that allows our shame to play out and be constantly reinforced.
2. Shame is created when we are seeking love and we don't receive the love we need.
3. We experience Shame in our childhood. Some parents use shame as a tool as a way to punish and deter. Others receive Shame by default and misunderstandings.
By our teenage years, as we start making our own decisions we begin creating Shame in the choices we make, and by adulthood we are fully manifesting Shame in our own special and hurtful way, for some it is through drugs and alcohol, others weight, loneliness, career limitations, greed and relationships. We all have a way that continues violating the love that we are. Until we have the wisdom to see.
For quite some time, I have known that my shame began when I started conceiving that I was worthless. As I grew, it grew into more forms, and until I became apt at creating self-love it festered away nicely. On looking I discovered hidden behind my wonderful and polished external appearance, my Shame had the following beliefs……drum roll please………I saw myself as a unworthy, disloyal, fraudulent, unsuccessful, drunken, slut!
The first time I said these beliefs out loud to a friend, I thought she was going to turn around and say 'I knew it'. Instead she smiled kindly and told me how brave I was to tackle such a foul tasting subject.
To overcome what I discovered was there, I did what we always to in Genius You land, I looked until I understood; where these beliefs came from, how they evolved and why they stuck around. Why they had become deep and disgusting untruths. And once I got to compassion I knew I was ready for what was next, healing through self love and the development of self worth, trust and belief.
I have created a module for tacking shame and have incorporated it into the process of Genius You, a part of this means I share my journey with others. The very things that were once my greatest fears have now become a source of laughter. When I say the mouthful of untruths I had once seen as law about myself, when I spoke out loud the very thoughts that had once haunted me, it now makes me and whomever I am sharing this with, laugh. This allows my clients to enter the process of addressing their shame with a sense of lightness and relief, knowing that they too, very soon, will be able to smile when it comes to looking at their greatest untruths.