Episode 46: Rejecting Shame
Noticing the shame we carry and feel when we are happy, sad, or being treated poorly will help us learn how to reject it. We will not allow it to have place in us anymore. Shame robs us of feeling good enough and tells us lies about who we are and what are true situation is. We are busting through shame in this episode to find even more healing.
We just hit 25,000 unique downloads. That's right, we did we hit it last week. super exciting. This podcast is one year old. And it has been such a fun journey to get here to learn about you guys to get your feedback to hear your questions and comments and concerns and, and all the things that come along with that it's been a crazy year right with COVID and having to pivot things and switch things. And that's exactly what I've done here with Choose In. As well as that my business with working with you guys. It's been life changing, and really a gift.
And I've loved every second of it, learning and growing right alongside with you guys. So as we go on today, and we start talking about our subject, I don't think that we've ever really talked about this before, maybe little pieces here and there, probably because this comes up in our daily lives. But I read something just the other day and I saved it. And I thought this is our next podcast for sure. And it is talking about shame. We're going to be talking about rejecting shame and how to do that and where it shows up in our lives.
I found this whole segment in this app I follow called the language of letting go by Melody Beatty. And every day, there's a different prompt to talk about recovery and healing. And this particular one is called rejecting shame. So I'm first going to just read this and it's a little it's not too long. It's just a few paragraphs. But the reason I want to read it is because we're going to tackle these different things specifically that show up in some of these paragraphs.
But I want to give you a reference point first on, on how it all works and where it shows up so that you can know Okay, we're going to be talking about this. And that makes sense because that's where it's showing up for me or I never even thought about shame that way. So we're going to start first by reading what she wrote. So she says, "shame can be a powerful force in our life. It is the trademark of dysfunctional families.
Authentic legitimate guilt is the feeling or thought that what we did is not okay. It indicates that our behavior needs to be corrected or altered, or an amend needs to be made. Shame is an overwhelming negative sense that who we are isn't okay. Shame is a no win situation. We can change our behaviors but we can't change who we are. Shame can propel us deeper into self defeating and sometimes self destructive behaviors. What are the things that can cause us to feel shame? We may feel ashamed. When we have a problem or someone we love has a problem.
We may feel ashamed for making mistakes or for succeeding, we may feel ashamed about certain feelings or thoughts. We may feel ashamed when we have fun feel good or vulnerable enough to show ourselves to others. Some of us feel ashamed just for being. Shame is a spell others put on us to control us to keep us playing our part. In dysfunctional systems. It is a spell many of us have learned to put on ourselves. Learning to reject shame can change the quality of our life.
It's okay to be who we are. We are good enough. Our feelings are okay. Our past is okay. It's okay to have problems, make mistakes, and struggle to find our path. It's okay to be human and cherish our humaneness. Accepting ourselves is the first step toward recovery. Letting go of shame about who we are, is the next important step." Was that just like jam packed with so many cool things? When I was reading it, I was like, Wow, this is so good.
I read a lot of stuff about shame from Brene Brown and, and it really does show up in our lives in so many of these ways. But the one that was so interesting to read about is where it shows up when we're having fun or if we're enjoying our life that we feel ashamed sometimes for being Okay. It's just so fascinating. So we're going to kind of break this down and go through this in segments so that we can talk about each of these individual ways or ideas where shame comes up.
And as we're doing this, I want you to think about where shame shows up for you. Because until we become aware of what it's doing to us or where it's showing us We can't change it. And then it kind of owns us. And really, we don't want anything owning us, we want to be very present with our feelings and thoughts. So that we can be different. So that we can learn and grow and change and progress and, and thrive in our lives, we want happiness, and that there's a freedom to it, when we can learn how to let go of shame, and put it where it needs to be.
So let's start with the first major thing in here that talks about shame is an overwhelming negative sense that who we are isn't okay. So if we look back on our childhood, or the way other people are raised, if you notice what's happening in their lives, you may notice when people are being made fun of either a spouse is being made fun of their children are being made fun of you might see it crossways in families, like brother in laws or sister in laws, putting people down, it might show up in sarcasm, where we're not really making fun, we're just laughing.
And but it's not really a joke, even though it kind of seems like it is at first, but then it starts feeling hurtful. You can notice when some of this starts out as fun and then shifts all of a sudden. So these are kinds of things where we are made fun of something about ourselves that really we can't change, maybe our height, maybe the color of our hair, or the way our skin is either imperfections on it that we think are there or, or acne and our teenage years or young adult life, things that are just part of being human.
And we're amazing the way we are anyway, even with those things, but somebody chooses to make us feel stressed about who we are something that we cannot change. This kind of shame makes us feel like we can't make it like we sometimes can turns to self destructive behaviors because it's like, they don't think I'm good enough. They don't think I am okay the way I am. Therefore I'm probably not okay. We see this in bullying, right.
And then the person being bullied ends up turning to other measures whether to numb or harm themselves in a way because the pain is so great. That shame is caused by somebody else that shame is not who we were made with or, or even really true. It's just somebody told that to us, this turns into us taking on shame to where we notice that things that are wrong.
Well, we're not this way we have a problem, we, we actually aren't that great, because we're doing this we start very being very critical of the things that we have flaws about whether even if there are things we can change, most of the times even even when it's things that we can change, but we kind of are like self defeating. And notice, wow, that would make sense that they would think that because look at this about me too. So it's like a self sabotage in a way we start believing what we've been told and therefore start becoming that person.
Sometimes we feel shame, because we have a certain problem that we don't like, or that nobody knows about. And we feel ashamed because we even have this problem. versus just going okay, this is a problem I have this is a weakness. This is something that I want to do differently. I just don't know how or I need to use my tools to do something different. But we take it as I feel shame because I have a problem.
We see this a lot in addiction, that there's so much shame around addiction, we don't want to tell anybody about it. We don't want to share with anybody, because then what are they going to think of us? And then what if they think we're the worst also. And then that shame just perpetuates just gets bigger and bigger. The other way with problems is, like she says on here is that we may feel shame when somebody else has a problem.
So we can look at this as whether it's our spouse that has a problem, whether it's a child that has a problem, whoever it is, but we need to constantly check ourselves to make sure that we are not taking on an issue that somebody else has that we can care for that person or love that person, even if or even though they have a problem. If you look at it with our children, and they don't get good grades, and we thought that they should have and we have shame around that, then that is really our problem, not theirs.
That's showing us that we are worried about what someone's going to think about us if our child does that. I think we talked about that a few weeks ago with our children if they have a tantrum, and we're like, oh no, what are people gonna think about me if my child is acting this way? Right? We need to switch that right. We need to we need to let that go and let that person be human and have an issue and not be perfect. Because we don't want to have to be perfect either.
The next thing she talks about is our thoughts. We may have shame surrounding our thoughts. Maybe we're super judgmental. You know what the majority of us are or have been. And we've had to work really hard at stopping those annoying voices that pop into our head that make a judgment call. But we can we can do it, we can be aware that we're thinking something about somebody else. And usually it's because we are just not feeling that great ourselves.
Or we think too highly of ourselves that we notice everything else. And why aren't people perfect. So again, that's a pride issue we're having, we can stop that though, we really can, as the voices in our head, talk about other people or, or want to make comments about where they live, or how they dress, whether they have a better house than you do, whether they have a less expensive house than you do judgment can go either way.
And that comes from our own either insecurities, our own shame, the way we grew up, or what we're feeling right now. But we can stop it by when that annoying voice starts coming into our head, we can say, cancel, cancel, cancel, no, no, no, no, no, I'm not gonna do that. I'm not gonna even go there. Or we can even say, Why did I just think that you don't even have to own it? It's not your core person who thinks that it's just some random voice.
And we get a million thoughts in our head that pop in like that every day. They're intrusive. They're crazy. They are not who we are. But if we feed them, and we go with it, yeah, that's right. They're this and they're that, then that's the energy we're gonna feed. And then we're just gonna keep feeling all of these judgmental, terrible thoughts, which then bring more shame. The other part of our thinking is that we could feel shame, because we are thinking unhealthy thoughts about ourselves about our partner, maybe things that we shouldn't even be thinking about or doing or having a hard time managing those thoughts.
If we have trouble with sex addiction, ourselves, we are having intrusive thoughts come in that we're constantly trying to monitor. If we're married to an addict, we will be worried about the thoughts that are going in their head, which then consumes our thoughts in our head. I know, for me being married to a sex addict, I was constantly aware of my surroundings, and I was looking for possibilities of what could trigger him. So we could be out in public somewhere.
And I would be noticing every little thing I was on high alert, aware of what everything was, to not to just to kind of give myself some, some like, Okay, he's gonna think that he's, I think that he's going to be thinking that, but I'm just, I mean, who knows? It's possible he was. And a lot of times he probably was, but it doesn't really matter. It was causing me harm. It was causing problems for me because I was preoccupied with the possibilities. So those kinds of thoughts and feelings cause shame in me, it caused bad energy, it caused my emotions to dip, it caused me to go into a spiral.
And we're trying to be healthy, we're trying to be be neutral. We're trying to learn how to be okay, we're trying to learn how to see clear so we can make healthy decisions about ourselves and about our relationship. And it doesn't help us when we go to that place in our mind, of having all of these intrusive feelings and feeding them. Now, I'm not saying to forget them and pretend they're not there. We just need to look at them in such a different way than in chaos.
And in a shameful state, we need to look at them as like, Okay, this is what's going on. This is what's happening. This is what I'm feeling is what I'm thinking, let me find out if those things are true. And then we can we can move forward, and then we won't live in such a spiral. My favorite one about this thing that she wrote, was some of us feel ashamed just for being, that is heartbreaking, right?
But some of us do, because we were raised to feel bad about who we are. We were told, who do you think you are? To be successful at that? Who do you think you are to think that you could get into college? Who do you think you are that you could start a business? Who do you think you are that you can be a millionaire? Who do you think you are? Right? All of those things? It's like this not good enough feeling? I'm not good enough for that.
So when we're doing something that is positive, we may feel shamed, or ashamed just for being that person, or even that we did succeed, like, Oh my gosh, what am I going to do? They didn't think I could and now I did. But are they even gonna acknowledge it? Are they gonna laugh at me still, that whole concept of we may feel ashamed when we have fun, feel good or vulnerable enough to show ourselves to others. That's huge. That's like a big deal.
And we find that when we've gone through traumatic experiences, or when we look at our past or our childhood, we will see how we were having fun, just being goofy and doing our thing and somebody said something to us. Somebody told us go away, you're being annoying. You're being too loud. You're being miss when a little child is told that they're being annoying, that is so damaging, because they're just trying to be them and someone who's an adult or older than them were a little child looks up and wants that validation and somebody is telling them that they're stupid or to go away because they're annoying.
That's abusive, it's so harmful, and it causes shame in ourselves that we are not okay. So we're having fun, but now we're not okay. The other way of having shame about having fun or feeling good is that when other people aren't, you may have a spouse that doesn't feel good that lives in the depths of despair, that doesn't feel happy. And so when you feel good, either they make you feel bad about it, or you don't want to show it because you feel ashamed.
I shouldn't be having fun right now, because this is happening over here. And this person is going through this. And so who am I to have fun, but there has to be balance in our lives, we have to know that there's hard things and there has to be room for fun, it's okay to have all the feelings. The other day I was talking to somebody about, they were asking me a question about love and about Do I have to be completely whole before I can have a partner and we were talking about that concept that people used to talk about about that you can't love anybody else unless you love yourself first.
And you have to be whole in order to find a healthy partner. And I used to think that I used to believe those concepts, but I don't anymore. Not at all, because we cannot be perfect, and we never will be and certain experiences have shaped our lives in a way of either, we're fearful of that because we've been abused in that situation, or we're unsure because of something else over here. And so sometimes we can't come completely whole in a relationship. And that's okay, because you're also with somebody else who's not perfect either.
And you're going to build together, the key is that you both want to the key is is that you're on the path of of healing and change and growth. And you're aware, and you want to keep doing better and feeling better. That's the key. But in this, she was talking about that about love. And I was talking about how our heart is almost like, you can think of it like a pie. And there, it's all cut in little sections. And everything needs to feel balanced. And you need to nurture every aspect in order to feel the best that you can, some of those areas will be more empty at times.
So we talked about that you need to nurture yourself physically, spiritually, emotionally, recreationally, all the different ways financially. And then, of course, in relationships, to where you want to have partnership. Now, not everybody does. And not everybody will. But if you are a person who wants a person, I really want a person, I'm so lonely, I just want to have somebody that is okay. And that's real. And that makes sense.
And if you are nurturing all the other aspects of your heart, and you still feel that emptiness, you might not feel totally whole right now. And that's okay, because there's a piece of that slice of your heart that isn't fulfilled right now. As long as you are working towards you that you are not sitting there wallowing in this despair of feeling so lonely that you can't move, then that is how it's going to be in you might feel empty until you find a person at least in that little slice.
But if you're thriving in other areas, and you're moving forward anyway, then you're healing and you're doing your part. I say that because sometimes we feel shame in that we are feeling that way. I shouldn't feel so lonely. I shouldn't be like this, I shouldn't feel so bad about being by myself, I should feel grateful and happy that I'm no longer with an abusive person. Well, I mean, yeah, of course, you are grateful that you're not with an abusive person.
But there's no reason to shame yourself for wishing or hoping or desiring to have a partner. That doesn't make you less of a person. And that doesn't make you any less whole. That just makes your heart with that piece of the pie feeling empty. So work on all the other aspects. Because what that does is it keeps healing you so that you're ready, so that you can continually meet people that will match how you feel what you want in life and your direction.
finding somebody that is working on their heart in those specific areas will feel so good. And then the rest of you guys figure out together, like we've talked about, some of these things won't show up until you're in a relationship. You won't know for sure where your trust issues lie until you're actually in a new relationship where you can trust somebody and then the triggers of potentially not being able to will come up. When you're with a healthy person that also is working on their things that they've struggled with or the traumas that they've been through you get to do it together.
So as you notice the things that you're going through the things that you feel shame about just remember, it's part of the process, feeling a certain way is part of the process. This last week, I posted some things on my story on Instagram about the blocks I was having about going to the gym. And you guys were so amazing. So awesome. You were just so helpful and loving and sending me all the love and the messages. And it was just so great to hear from you. I just felt so much love.
I just wanted to give you guys all this big hug and be like, I love you guys so much. It was a very empowering workout. I went in the gym, and I was listening to these Taylor Swift songs that were just so like high vibe and, and I seriously wanted to just start dancing in the gym, I was like, Oh, I would love it if nobody was in here. So I could just seriously rock out to this song. It was just so funny. But I was in there going, I have not felt this good. Being at the gym in such a long time. It was amazing. And partly because I showed up vulnerable and raw to you guys.
I talked about in my in that story about how I was feeling stressed almost to where I wanted to throw up thinking about sharing that block with you guys about myself. And I was thinking this is crazy. Why am I feeling like I want to throw up. And that was because of being vulnerable to talk through a block and to say, Hey, listen, I'm having this block. And for whatever reason, that trigger had come up in December about the gym and just feeling safe at the gym and, and everything.
And it was still obviously there. And so working through it talking with you guys was the way I got through it. If I would have just felt shame about it. Ah, here I am, years out of this. I've been doing so well I teach other people how to do all of all of this. And now I have a trigger that came up for me. Man, I am just not good enough. I am I am nothing Who am I to do what I do, right? If I would have done that, that would have just been that would have been wrong and silly and crazy.
Because that means nothing. It means I'm human and I was having a block about something we can really look at ourselves. And notice where our shame comes in. If we notice where the blocks are, if we allow it to come up, like I felt it and instead of just going oh, I don't feel good. Now I'm not going to go to the gym, or This is making me feel stressed sharing this with the world, I should probably not share it with the world, then shame would have won.
But I don't like that I don't want shame to win. I want to get through these blocks because I like the way I feel afterwards. And what I felt after was empowerment, I felt light, I felt joy, I was smiling while I was working out. And because of that day, and I felt that way, I had the energy to go again. And I'm gonna go again, it's like it feels so good. It's different when we live in that place of showing up for ourselves showing up for other people.
Regardless of what our issue is, or what our experiences at that time, we get to benefit, we get to see things different, we get to treat ourselves better, which means that we will also notice other people, and that we won't feel shame towards them when something they're doing brings up the shame that we have in ourselves. So thank you again for showing up for me, and just know that I'm here for you as well. Okay, the last one that I want to talk about is the shame that other people put on us to control us.
That's a big one in dysfunctional families or relationship. That's a big one when we are dealing with somebody who's either narcissistic, or struggled with addiction, or behavioral issues that cause emotional abuse. So when we have shame coming from somebody else, it will look like or possibly look like they're always looking for a reason why we're not okay. But if they can't get us to feel bad over here, they're going to create another way for us to feel bad over here.
We talked a lot about this in an episode earlier on. I don't remember what number it was 21 or 22. It's a two part thing. It's on emotional abuse. And we talked about the specific kinds of things that are like that, but it's, it's because that person wants to cause you to feel shame, want you to feel less than so that you're not living in that powerful place, that place of moving forward so that they can stop you from progressing, because they're not progressing or because then you're gonna start noticing and setting boundaries against their actions.
So when we start noticing, wait a second, you don't need to make fun of me for that. You don't need to roll your eyes at everything I say. You don't need to act like all the things that are important to me are stupid. When we start noticing that that's what it is. We can stop the shame we can start calling it out for what it is. Oh they want to make fun of me because of what they're going through what they're feeling.
If they don't like what I do, that doesn't matter, I'm going to now stop sharing with them what I'm doing, I'm going to call them out when they tried to say, you just don't even care about this about me or you, you just think you're so great, because you're doing all this stuff. They're trying to make you feel bad for who you are, or that you didn't meet their needs. That's shame techniques that's controlling techniques, that's codependency, that is gaslighting.
It's, there's so many things to it. So if that's happening in your relationship, I want you to take notice of it and just start recognizing when you're just going about your day, doing your thing. And out of nowhere, somebody says something to you, that is degrading or critical or mocking or anything like that. I want you to notice also, if they are saying to you, you never do this for me. And and you don't even notice this when they do that. Also notice that's still a form of trying to make you feel bad for being you or for not noticing.
It's not your job to notice everything. It's not your job, job to take care of them in everything. Right? So those are shamed tactics, where when we feel like I'm just not a good person, I just didn't even talk to them about that I didn't even notice that I didn't even think about that. That is not true. So we have to bust the shame, we have to start rejecting the shame as it's coming to us.
So we can start saying no, no, no, cancel, cancel, cancel, I'm not going to give thought to that I'm not going to give energy to that. I'm not going to even think about that. Whether it's our own stuff, something that somebody else says or does doesn't matter. I want you to start rejecting shame. start noticing when it comes in, start calling it out. Oh, that shame. Oh, wait a second, that has nothing to do with me. That's that's not for me to carry.
It's a powerful place to be. It's important because it's happening around us. And we're living in it. We don't need to we want to live high vibe, and happy and smiling and powerful and doing good things in the world. And we do not need anyone or ourselves, shaming us for being human or for trying or for not noticing something or for doing things in perfectly. It doesn't matter. One of my favorite things right now that I've learned in some of the other stuff that I've been working on and listening to is to take imperfect action, just take the step, just do it.
Even if you're not ready, just just don't worry that it has to be so perfect in order to have the right outcome. Just take imperfect action, I want you to apply that this week in combating shame in rejecting shame. Don't let it own you don't let it do anything that would cause you to give any place to it in your heart, your mind or your soul. There is no room for shame at all. We don't need to take any of it.
When we're listening to outside sources, when we're listening to people tell us what we should or shouldn't be doing. Either in our personal life or in our relationships. They do not know what we are supposed to do for ourselves. Don't let them shame you into doing something the way they think they should. Brene Brown says something like I don't have the quote right now. But something to the effect of if they are not in your arena, their opinion shouldn't matter.
So if you're hearing advice from people who aren't married to someone with struggling with pornography addiction, or aren't going through divorce, and they're wanting to share with you what you should be doing, and they have an opinion about it. Remember that quote, if they are not in your arena, their opinion doesn't matter. It's because they don't know they have no idea. They're just coming from their own their own belief system and what they think they would do, but they don't really know.
So take all of that relisten to this if you need to check out and notice where the shame is showing up in your life and become aware of it so that you can start rejecting it. Remember, just cancel, cancel, cancel, I'm not going to shame. I'm going to love myself. I'm going to work on the things I need to I'm going to keep moving forward and I am going to continue to heal and thrive in my life.
As always, you can reach out to me You can schedule a session go to the website. Look what I have to offer. The retreat is coming up you guys. We have over half of the spots filled we still have some left today that this podcast will be coming out is the very last day that you can register it early pricing. So get on that go to the website RoxanneKennedyGranata.com.
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