Today I want to talk about toxic shame: the difference between shame and guilt, what toxic shame does to us, and how to cure it. I was thinking about this topic in reference to my own life recently and want to tell you about how I truly learned what toxic shame is.
This kind of shame can often come from a traumatic experience, and it’s about feeling like you are not enough as a person, that you have such flaws that cannot be fixed. But that isn’t true! With a little hard work, you can tackle this feeling and leave toxic shame behind you.
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“There’s an element with toxic shame that is so much deeper – it’s not about behavior, it’s about who you are as a person.” – Terri Cole
- My own story of guilt and shame
- What work you have to do after a traumatic experience
- What shame really is
- The difference between guilt and shame
- What allows shame to thrive
- What is the cure for toxic shame
- How shame is different from toxic shame
- Shame felt in childhood can leave a deep wound
- How to free yourself from shame
- What does self compassion look like
- How shame and blame go together
- A visualization exercise you can do
“What is the cure for toxic shame? It really is empathy, compassion, vulnerability.” – Terri Cole
Try This Visualization Exercise:
- Think of one of the most shameful experiences of your childhood.
- Think of what you wish someone had said to you at that time and write down that statement.
- Imagine someone you respect and admire saying those words to you.
- Take those words of comfort into your heart.
- Say those words out loud to yourself.
“We need love and kindness in our early life and in our entire life.” – Terri Cole
- Learn more about the Lara Touch
You have to replace the self criticism with self kindness.” – Terri Cole