I didn’t even realize that’s what it was. I knew that quite often I would feel guilty. About not living up to people’s expectations. Not living up to my own. Fearing disapproval. All of these things. Quietly, I would pack my hurt away and store it deep inside of me, not realizing that I would drag it out again at the very next opportunity. I have always done this.
Within this year, already, I have had the opportunity to watch two TEDTalks videos on YouTube by Brene Brown. I did not watch them at the same time but probably within a couple of months of each other. The first one was The Power of Vulnerability. (Click on link to view video) An awesome video one that made me think about the way I do things. But it was the second video that changed my life. In her video Listening to Shame, (again click on link to view the video) Brene talks about the effect that the first video had on her life.
That’s when I realized I was living with shame. It wasn’t just guilt about not doing what I “thought” I should be doing, it was shame in knowing that I probably didn’t deserve any better than what I was getting in life because of my failures. I can’t blame any of it on anyone other than myself. I am the one that chooses. It is all my responsibility.
Sounds devastating doesn’t it? Well, let me tell you it was. However, the fighter in me knew that I just couldn’t stay there. As part of my morning pages, my journaling routine, I do a listing of things I am grateful for, and then things I want to affirm in my life. I added two new affirmations:
“I am a SPIRITUAL being having human experiences;” and
“I am a divine innocent.”
Those two affirmations have made all the difference in whether I live with guilt and shame. There is a CLARITY in just WHO I am that I have not had before.
And knowing that I am not a “human being” but a “spiritual being” lets me recognize that in the people around me as well.
The videos are long….but so well worth the watch.