This is a great talk by Brene Brown.
She describes the difference between shame and guilt very elegantly here. She has done extensive research about shame, and states that it is a cause of depression, anxiety and suicide in most cultures.
She talks about shame as an epidemic in our culture and how the media and society program us for shame. The ads that tell us how we “should be,”
and what we “should be doing.” …to the people in our lives that expect us to live up to unreasonable standards.
Shame can come from abuse and emotional trauma in our childhoods, and in our adulthood experiences. Shame is programmed into us by others. You can re-wire the brain with thought patterns that are more supportive for you. Shame is a destroyer.
I believe that many mental disorders are based in shame. I work with abuse survivors that carry loads of shame from their past. Even when people come to the realization that they were abused, the shame does not just go away. In fact sometimes it becomes worse, during the healing process because old wounds are being opened up.
Walking through the programs that are in your brain is important, to be able to find the truth about yourself. You are a special, unique person.
You do not have to carry toxic shame with you.
You cannot change the past, but you can change the meaning of the memories that you carry of it.
The people that planted those seeds were just trying to meet their own agenda by keeping you down, and unsure of your value and place in the world.
Brene Brown makes the point that creativity, inventiveness, and change come from a place of vulnerability. Doing things that are different, and uniquely you means you have to be somewhat vulnerable.
The greatest minds of the world came up with original ideas and creations and discoveries. They were not always met with acceptance.
You do not have to follow the crowd. You have your own voice…you just have to find it and differentiate that authentic voice from the programs that were implanted into your brain. Shame is one of those programs that is no longer serving you.