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Following the thread that wove its way through not only this week’s healing groups but really the past few months of groups, let’s spend a little more time on the topic of courage and vulnerability, shall we?
In case you’re one of the four people who hasn’t yet heard Brené Brown’s 2010 TED Talk, or, like me, you might find value in a revisit, here’s a link to the 20-minute video and transcripts:
I know of no better resource for understanding both sides of the courage-vulnerability coin.
Even more pertinent for us right now, perhaps, might be her 2012 talk on the ever-popular topic of shame:
As inherently divine beings, I posit that we naturally feel some amount of shame whenever we become separated from the fullness of who we are, and, indeed, my teacher Herwig observed that shame is a component of every instance of illness, even hangnails and stubbed toes. As with every emotion, a) it’s perfectly natural by definition, b) we can interpret it as simply an indicator of our separation serving to gently return us to our wholeness, or c) we can make the mistake of listening to—or worse yet, believing—accompanying thoughts that our conditioned mind or other people supply, most or all of which are likely inaccurate.
Knowing that some prefer the term “guilt” for legitimate instances of shame, either way, let’s not forget that these do exist, that is, that it’s healthy to feel bad when we’ve wronged someone; the absence of shame defines sociopathy. That said, I think that the most important takeaway from Dr. Brown’s second talk might be an understanding of the way that shame becomes toxic when we allow it to tell us that we aren’t fundamentally worthy of love and respect. As she also mentions, it’s clearly epidemic in our culture, but once we understand its illegitimacy, is there anything standing in the way of our ceasing to believe its lies and allowing any feelings to just be feelings passing through our experience?
Here’s today’s reminder that you are enough and that you’re worthy of love and respect.
In praise of going deep for the big fish,
PS Here's the ultimate Integration Tip:
March 08th, 2021