Self Shaming

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I know this may come as a shock to you, but I did not eradicate judgment from my life after I wrote my Non-Judging post.

I know.

In fact, after I decided to stopallthejudging, I found myself slightly more judgmental. Especially judgmental towards myself.

Confession: Not only do I judge myself, I shame myself.

I shame myself for not making good choices.

I shame myself for not walking Tahnee everyday.

I shame myself that Tahnee has gained weight in the last year (from not walking as much). DOUBLE SHAME.

I shame myself for spending too much money going out with friends.

I shame myself for being tired after a night of fun (going out with friends and spending money). DOUBLE SHAME.

I shame myself for not calling my grandma enough. (Sorry, Grandma).

I shame myself for making mistakes at work- even though I know better. DOUBLE SHAME.

I shame myself that there is always dog hair on my floor.

I shame myself that my room is never clean.

I shame myself for not flossing everyday.

I shame myself for eating out when I’m tired, stressed or anxious. DOUBLE SHAME.

I shame myself that I have made poor choices in the past which have led me to unpleasant things today. (i.e. previously spending beyond my means; I am now paying off debt).

This shaming slowly leads to self hatred. Not necessarily hatred of myself, but hatred of particular qualities, tendencies, or attributes I have or may not have.

Over the past few weeks, I have been a part of a “Mindfulness and Mediation” class. During this past week’s topic, “Easing Up On Yourself,” we dealt a lot about self shame. I can relate. The instructor said something that I found to be very powerful (especially for a seasoned Self Shamer), “Do not change [yourself] out of self hatred. Change [yourself] out of love.”

This statement resonated with me.

One of the largest changes in my life recently was my recent weight loss (and muscle gain). When I think back to my first post, Operation Love Handle, I think about why I decided to take that journey…

I started Operation Love Handle for three reasons:

  1. Change my life (be healthy to live a long, healthy life)
  2. Change my mind (still working on that…)
  3. Change my body (shed the weight I gained when I was unhappy; build muscle and become strong)

These reasons were not because I hated the way my body looked. The only thing I really didn’t like was that my arms were not toned. And the only reason it bothered me was because I couldn’t do a push-up.

I started Operation Love Handle out of love for myself rather than hatred. So this is what I am thinking: I need to de-shame my shaming thoughts. In the areas of my life I’d like to improve, I have to start loving the way they are before I can change them.

Instead of:

“I shame myself for making a mistake at work – even though I knew better. DOUBLE SHAME.”

How about:

I love my job and I work really hard everyday. I put my best foot forward although I am not always successful. I will have good days and bad days, but the bad days will help me become better at my job.

Or another,

Instead of:

“I shame myself for being tired after a night of fun (of going out with friends and spending money). DOUBLE SHAME.”

How about:

I am really, really, really grateful I have friends. I’m feeling stressed about money, so I will invite them over more to cut costs.

Some shames are much easier than others to re-frame. I honestly can’t re-frame all the shames from my list, but I promise to work on it. I’m hoping to see an improvement in my Self Shaming tendencies. I have a feeling it won’t happen overnight. :)

_____________________________________

Will you join me? What do you shame yourself for?

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6 Comments

Filed under Life, Self, Things I've learned

6 responses to “Self Shaming

  1. I recently started seeing a therapist again for some anxiety stuff, but this came up in last week’s session. I am very judgmental of myself. If I don’t understand something right away, for example, I get really upset with myself. I put a lot of unwarranted pressure on myself to be smarter, better, faster, skinnier, etc., and it’s having a really negative effect on my self-esteem. Even when someone compliments me, I dismiss it right away saying, “yeah thanks, but I could be better.”

    I’m trying to practice breathing more. Next time I receive a compliment or catch myself in a self-shaming moment, I’m supposed to take a deep breath, and find the positive, or simply say “thank you.”

    It’s a much harder habit to break than I thought — I didn’t even realize it had become a habit in the first place. Much luck to you as you ditch the shaming! I’ll be sending you good vibes.

    • Thank you, Jennifer! Breathing and observing your shaming thoughts – and not judging them – is an important part of the process.

      We can kick this bad habit together! :)

  2. sister

    this is a great blog – very open and honest. don’t shame yourself, just work every day at being the best you – and that is all you can do. I am so proud of you!

  3. Pingback: Things I like this week (vol 14). | BrittanyandTahn

  4. Jess

    Stumbled across one of your comments in Nicole’s blog (also adored her “Change Your Story” post). Your posts really resonate with me, and have already bookmarked quite a few! Was quite uncomfortable reading this shame post because I’ve realized I’m still, despite my best efforts, perpetuating my self-shaming cycle and blaming myself for a lot of things in the past and present. “Do not change [yourself] out of self hatred. Change [yourself] out of love.” <- This just basically sums up what I've been trying to achieve these last few months. Good luck in your endeavors!

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