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How do you guys learn to feel less shame?

2939 Views 14 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  Quernus
I ask this in regards to confronting emotions that you may be feeling at the moment, or attempt to resolve pent-up emotions associated with past events.

(I.e. guilt upon realization that you may have been acting in harmful ways towards specific people in your life, that rare time when you let yourself be angry over injustices committed against you instead of holding it in for the long-term, etc.)

Instead of habitually ignoring them or trying to avoid them do to the possible feelings of discomfort associated with the realization process, how does one let themselves be free of these burdens when they mostly aren't familiar with freeing themselves at all?
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I do my best to accept myself and work on the areas that need improving. These days, I'm much healthy than I previously was. I work at what needs improvement, accept what can't be improved, and take pride in the things I appreciate about myself. My identity is anchored in something permanent (my girlfriend), so that gives me a strong sense of security. That's really how I've survived with my present self.

I will say something that may sound odd though. There was an identity I carried which was the most shameful I ever had and did my best to escape. This was the person I was as a child. Everything about childhood was horrible for me. I was ignorant, a victim, manipulated, gullible, and all of these things that I despise. I had a poor childhood and was mistreated. This probably is the source of my shame. In any case, the name I was labeled at birth was wrapped with so many negative meanings that to hear it made me feel sick. Thinking about who I was brought up unbearable feelings. I wasn't the person I was made to believe I was, but I wasn't really anyone else either. I tried to be a certain way and stick to it for the sake of consistency, but that never worked. Eventually, I became healthier with the help of my girlfriend and did the above. As for this identity that was so pinned to me - I murdered it. Yes, I've become a different person since then, one that feels natural for me and one that feels like "me" for once. I took every piece of that identity that was pinned to me and obliterated it. It may seem excessive, but I ditched (almost) everyone that ever knew that part of me so nothing could remind me of it, I got a legal name change and disassociated myself with that prior label, and I became the person I felt I was inside. Every bit of whatever that identity was, I murdered.
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