Addicted to Shame?
I just sat down to start yet another self help online course. I’ve taken many over the years and they have been mostly helpful; a few even life changing. There is no such thing as striving too hard to be the healthiest versions of ourselves we can be, after all. In fact, I hope to be the creator of a life-changing ’self help’ course in the near future.
“Today I’m going to find more healing in sharing with you.”
Today, though, I’m feeling weary; I’m feeling tired of following someone else’s advice, however wise or helpful. Today I’m going to instead write of my own feelings on the topic of addiction and where it might stem from. Today I’m going to find more healing in sharing with you as I’m amidst the battle.
I have managed to conquer many addictions through mind training, healing trauma, and sheer determination. When I decided I really wanted to quit smoking almost 12 years ago, I did it cold turkey. I did not want my husband to have to be married to a smoker, so I threw out my last pack of cigarettes the day after our wedding. Bada-bing, bada-boom: Done.
Quitting alcohol was more difficult as it was my last tangible vice and I was eyeballs-deep in reasons to continue to drown my fears and sorrows in liquid courage.
I had the convenient excuse of coming from a long line of alcoholics and addicts, and a sobering childhood, pun not intended. What I mostly had, though, was the unconscious desire to further push down awful feelings of guilt, shame and unworthiness.
As many of you know, I have since faced those demons head-on and finally exorcised and transformed them.
Why is it, then, that I still battle addictions to other things? Is there something that still needs healing? Do I just really love food that much?
I don’t think so, because it *almost* seems like instead of pushing down certain feelings, I’m actually addicted to them, such as the shame I feel after a food binge.
(Oops, I spilled a little 🤷♀️😂)
“Is that even possible, to be addicted to shame?”
Is that even possible, to be addicted to shame? Damn, I think it is. Just as our bodies get used to and addicted to the feel good chemicals produced by eating delicious foods, I believe we can also become addicted to the feelings of guilt and shame that overeating creates. You see, it’s about what we are used to.
It might seem completely crazy. Why the hell would I *want* to feel badly? Why would I *want* to be busting out of my pants and risk my recovery by overindulging on sometimes unhealthful foods?
Is it unconscious self sabotage? Am I reliving or reenacting something from earlier in life?
Why is it that when I refrain from my pattern of binge and repent for several days or weeks or months, I will inevitably be triggered somehow to cave and fall back into my comfort zone?
Certainly hunger hormones are at play and cravings are very real and many things can contribute to increased hunger and inability to control cravings. Leptin resistance and Ghrelin are pesky little buggers, indeed. But in my case I know it goes way beyond purely physical and I suspect many of us can relate to varying degrees.
Hot damn, even as I write this it dawns on me more just how addicted to shameful feelings I am.
I’ve worked SO hard to clear all blockages which keep me from opening myself up to total healing in all areas and I find it so interesting that it’s the subconscious blocks that hold most of us back from our full potential. Not anything our thinking minds can manifest.
“Perhaps this one isn’t one big ‘aha’ moment but instead a trickling of understanding over time that eventually leads to subtle signs of healing.”
So how do we fully clear these subconscious blocks so we can begin to expend our energy only where it most serves?
I feel like I’m getting close, but I’m not there yet. I promise that when I figure it out I will share what I’ve learned. Perhaps this one isn’t one big ‘aha’ moment but instead a trickling of understanding over time that eventually leads to subtle signs of healing.
For now, staying open is almost as healing. I truly believe that I have healed much more quickly since opening up about my journey. No more tightly wound shameful secrets festering deep within my core.
Now, I let it up and out and slowly yet surely, the poison seeps out of old wounds, revealing fresh pink new life.
As always, self love must win out over any of these feelings. Self compassion and understanding that I’m a work in progress and as always, progress is perfection. My ultimate goal on this lifelong journey is to be addicted to joy, not to shame. I wouldn’t mind being addicted to exercise, either. 🤔🤣
So for the rest of today, I’ll forgive my indiscretions while practicing radical self forgiveness. Shame busting first and over time, more healing will follow. 🙌🏼
**Thank you for following along with me as I heal mind, body & spirit. I plan to continue sharing what I’ve learned in hopes to connect with others who might benefit from my journey. I’ve learned that not only is there no shame in sharing, but it can be incredibly healing. You are not alone. Happy Healing! 🙏🏼❤️🙏🏼
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