I hit rock bottom a few days ago during a deep detox program I’ve been doing. Anger, frustration, a sense that I was, once again, swallowing my own emotions to fit in with and please others. Except this time, I let those feelings flow, and discovered the great gift these uncomfortable emotions had to offer.
I felt shame, deep shame that seemed to have been with me since the beginning of time. It filled the whole of my being, bringing up uncontrollable sobbing and tears. As a coach, with a host of personal development tools at my disposal, I got curious, and began to coach myself. What emerged was a rare and exceptional gift.
About guilt and blame and shame. The lowest of the lowest of emotions — associated with humiliation and banishment. What is worse, in survival terms, than banishment?
Just the fear of banishment, of being ostracised or rejected by the tribe is enough to tame us.
Shaming is taming. It’s the way we are encouraged to step into line. It’s the way we adapt and fit in, to satisfy our deep need to belong.
The problem is that we never satisfy that need — never truly feel we belong. Because, by compromising our integrity to fit in, we lose a little bit of ourselves. And each ‘fitting in’ swallows more and more of our integrity, to the point where we may have forgotten who we are. What it feels like to be authentic. REAL.
It’s not surprising, that shame, blame and guilt are some of the most common forms of motivation used by leaders, parents, politicians, the clergy. And it stems from FEAR. When something doesn’t go according to plan, we get stuck in fear and anger, and from there it’s so easy to blame someone or something. And, in turn, that sets up a very unhealthy dynamic — of the victim, the bully and the rescuer, all of whom are reacting out of fear. And that all too human need to be ‘right’.
As a conscious leader, you need to break this vicious cycle. Establish a healthier work dynamic and a more compassionate and authentic style of leadership. But where do you begin?
By taking responsibility for the circumstances of your life — your actions, your emotional, mental and spiritual wellbeing. And supporting those around you to take responsibility for theirs. This lifts you — and them — out of victim mentality.
Whenever you experience life as happening TO YOU, you give away your power.
Stay open and curious. Be willing to let go of some of your attachments — the most critical being your insistence that the world needs to be a certain way — your way. Or that you can control what is really not within your control. As long as you hold on to these unreasonable beliefs, you’ll get upset whenever things don’t show up that way.
So, let go of that need to have things your way. Take responsibility for your life, and immediately you’ll notice a difference. In your own life and work, in your relationships and in your leadership.
And book a call. Let me support you in letting go of that attachment and becoming the conscious and authentic leader you are destined to be.