Growth & Feelings of Shame

As a therapist, I get to witness very frequently what emotions such as guilt, shame, and self-loathing do to people. I get hear their stories about past regrets and situations they wish could have been different all the time, and I am usually left reflecting on my own life. The decisions I’ve made and the consequences I’ve had to live with. It is in these moments that we get the choice of how we will view and feel about ourselves, and what I know to be true in my own life, is that we can be very harsh critics. We seem to have a tendency of looking ourselves in the mirror and judging so drastically that we convince our minds that we are bad people.

How could I have been so stupid?

Why didn’t I see it coming?

Why wouldn’t I listen to anyone?

What I have observed, more often than not, is that we seem to value being hard on ourselves. Maybe because it shows others that we won’t let ourselves get off the hook or that we are not arrogant or selfish. There seems to be a socially accepted norm around loathing ourselves, at least until it begins to impact the experience of others. Some of the best stand up comics will perform an entire set poking fun at themselves to the point of presenting themselves as someone who cannot do anything right. Of course, we laugh and admire at their ability to “laugh at themselves”, which can be an important skill, but what happens when it is taken too far? What if our guilt or self-loathing becomes feelings of shame? Emotions that begin to influence our behaviour in ways that don’t make us happy? This is the shadow side of laughing at ourselves and the guilty feelings we experience when we realize we’ve done something to hurt oneself or another. Instead of focusing on what we have to learn from the experience we become hyper focused on what we’ve done and attach judgement to ourselves.

From the perspective of spirit it is important to remember that there is no judgement of who you are as a unique soul. Instead, what is focused on is what you chose to do after having the experience.

How did you change your life because of it?

Do you seek more love or try harder to avoid fear?

Are you making different choices than before?

What are you letting in to your life and what are you keeping out?

The growth is what matters, not what label you attach to yourself. In truth, many of us will set up specific life events pre-incarnation in order to answer these questions. In many cases it is not about what you did, but how you grew from the experience, and are you willing to make positive change moving forward? “Positive” being a relative term since you can be the only one who decides what is helpful vs. unhelpful in your life. When we focus on attaching a judgement to ourselves we are also simultaneously choosing to ignore the opportunity for growth that is being presented to us. Something Archangel Gabriel told me once was “there is no room for growth if we are focused on condemning who we are”, and I’ve needed reminding of that from time to time. If we choose to focus on growth then it is practically like choosing to be more like the ascended masters we all look up to. Consider this for a moment: Since masters like Jesus, the Buddha, or Mohammad were all human at one point, are we really going to believe that they never had bad days? Never made a choice that they had the opportunity to feel bad about? They are definitely wonderful benevolent beings, but physical incarnation literally means we are going to experience some difficult choices.

A belief that I have chosen to adopt is that they did not so much behave perfectly as they chose to focus on growing from each experience to the fullest extent they could. In doing so, they guaranteed that when faced with the same decision again they would know what they prefer to have happen instead of what simply “has happened in the past”. Kind of gives a new spin on the catch phrase “what would Jesus do” 🙂

Something I would encourage each and every one of you to consider is when you have the opportunity to be hard on yourself try loving yourself instead. If you catch yourself saying something negative about your life, your situation, your body, your job, instead try to say something nice. If you are being faced with a very emotionally challenging situation then try to focus on how you can grow as a soul as opposed to how trying life is.

Difficult, I know… But so very very worth it!

The angels don’t like making many guarantees because that’s not really their thing, but if it were, they would most likely guarantee that if you do this your life will improve, even slightly. Besides, I’m hard pressed to think of a situation that is hindered by a little bit of compassionate love 🙂

Unitl next time, I love you all!!

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