6 Points for Understanding Shame
“Vulnerability is not weakness.” These words were spoken by Dr. Brené Brown in her TED talk on shame. She goes on to say, “Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity, and change.” However, what gets in the way for most of us embracing the vulnerability required—and can actually stop us in our tracks—is listening to shame and actually doing the action of risking being vulnerable with others. In order to work through our shame, though, first we need to understand what it is and why it is so detrimental to our self-esteem, learning and growth.
6 Elements of Shame*
1) It is the swampland of the soul: yucky, murky, uncomfortable and paralyzing.
2) Shame is not guilt. The difference between guilt and shame: shame is, “I am bad.” Guilt is, “I did something bad.”
3) Shame drives two big tapes in our minds: “Not good enough,” and, if you can get beyond that one, “Who do you think you are?”
4) It is organized by gender. For women, shame is, “Do it all, do it perfectly and never let them see you sweat. For men, shame is, “Do not be perceived as weak.”
5) It impacts how we parent, how we work and how we look at each other.
6) Empathy is the antidote to shame.
Listening to our internal dialogue of shame or the “shame gremlins” is detrimental, destructive and debilitating to us and it permeates everything we do. It digs deep into the relationships in which we are engaged, and directly impacts the quality of our lives. It is also unnecessary and entirely possible to limit or eliminate the airtime you allow it in your own life.
*The information in this article was taken directly from the TEDx talk by Dr. Brené Brown, Listening to Shame.
If you would like to work on your shame triggers and empower your self esteem, give me a call today at my San Diego office to set up and appointment today! You are worth it! 619-687-9013