The Shame Release Practice

How I learned to love myself just a little bit more

Cassandra C. Stirling
The Masterpiece

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Photo by Mick Haupt on Unsplash

When I was a senior account manager for an online marketing company, I made a mistake. It wasn’t a missed email or failing to send a report on time, but a mistake that dug its claws into me. A mistake that resulted in being removed from that account. A mistake that brought on shame that still lingered seven years later.

I’ve tried all sorts of ways to air out my shame cupboard, to wipe the slate clean, and to move on. Journalling, meditation, therapy, talking it out with friends, telling myself it was just a mistake. It wasn’t until I watched Dr. Christopher Germer’s video, “Self-Compassion: The Antidote to Shame,” that I had any success.

In the video, Dr. Germer details what self-compassion is, why it’s not selfish, the reason shame exists, what it did for us back in our hunter-gatherer days, how we’ve taken it from a state to a trait, and how self-compassion can ease it. We’ll never eradicate feeling shame when experiences we perceive as requiring it occur, but self-compassion can help us move through it quicker, to not allow it to take root.

Like my shame did from that mistake I made at work.

There are many good nuggets in the video, including that the energy of shame is innocent. It’s just an emotion, an…

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Cassandra C. Stirling
The Masterpiece

Writer, editor, writing coach, and videogamer. I write about writing, books, and occasionally videogames.