I’m not a fan of shame.
I may not be a psychologist, but can I just go out on a limb and say that shame is not a healthy motivator?
And you know, right?… Deep down… You know when shame motivates a choice.
Overt shame I can handle. I can laugh in its face and flip it the bird.
It’s the subtle shame that puts the pit in my stomach and halfway convinces me that I need to drastically change who I am.
See, I can deal with the “you’re going to hell,” crowd (overt). I have a much harder time with the “I’m really concerned about you,” approach (subtle).
It’s because I believe in believing the best about people. And when someone tells me they are really concerned about the path that my life is on, I hope I will never be too proud to listen.
I don’t have it all together. That should be obvious. I have lots of learning and growing to do. And I believe that each person has something valuable to share, something I can learn from.
But I’m starting to realize that the shame has more to do with my internal voices than it does with any external influence.
Too often I make decisions based on potential future conflicts that I try to avoid. Conflict that hasn’t even happened yet. I hear a family member saying this, or a friend say that—all in my mind—and it factors into my decision making process.
Told you I don’t have it all together.
However, when my mind is clear of internal clutter and I am operating from a place of inner freedom and peace, not even the pope himself could shame me (not that this one would).
And there’s the power in it.
When I am being shamed I’m doing it to myself.
And I can opt out of that bull.