Shame Resilience in Action
We also gain more knowledge and data moving forward—we have more language to notice shame in the moment, so instead of storing it in our bodies (and spirits) we might say “oh, I’m noticing that this thing that has happened is making me feel shame. Maybe I’ll do something to process this well instead of letting it crush my soul and ruin my life.” Converting that shame to guilt—an experience that teaches us something or gives us instructions about how to do *the thing* differently next time. Or perhaps even recognizing that whatever happened doesn’t have the consequences that our brain seems to be telling us it does, in the first place.
When we heal our past shame, we also build resilience against future shame; the shame just simply doesn’t hold the same power over us. When we’ve broken that internal feedback loop that tells us we’re unworthy just once, it takes the wind out of shame’s sails. Never again will it be as intense, as powerful, as that first active shame we find ourselves in. We’ve already disproven our trash human status to our brain once, so it’s less likely to go there in the first place.
This is Shame Resilience in action. We work through past shame to heal our open wounds, gain language and insight, and build resilience against future shame. We smash shame’s power over us by letting ourselves be fully seen and known, and still beloved. We continue up this upward spiraling, becoming more skilled and adept with every step.
Brown, B. (2013, January.) Shame v. guilt. Brené Brown. https://brenebrown.com/blog/2013/01/14/shame-v-guilt/
Selva, J. (2020, September.) Shame Resilience Theory: How to Respond to Shame. Positive Psychology. https://positivepsychology.com/shame-resilience-theory/