Shame is often transmitted through family lines. Parents use shame-based parenting, the children grow up with shame and use shame-based parenting, and the pattern is repeated.
Shame is something that comes up in therapy regularly. One of the most powerful ways to work with shame is using self-compassion. When you hear yourself thinking:
“I’m so dumb; I always make mistakes.”
- Notice the thought – “um – that’s one way of looking at it”.
- Where does it come from? “This comes from my mother always telling me I was dumb”.
- What evidence might disprove this? “Well, I passed all of my high school exams, and I’m doing well at work”.
- Reframe – “I made a mistake, and I can learn from it. I’m human, and we all make mistakes”.
Remember to be gentle with each thought as it comes. These thoughts took years to build up and will take a while to break down. You got this!