Mia and I were having a phone session.
"My supervisor is almost always angry at me. I got along so well with my previous supervisor but I can't seem to do anything right enough for this woman. I don't know what the problem is, but I think maybe I'm really messing up. I used to think I was doing a good job, but now I'm not so sure."
"Mia, there must be a good reason you are shaming and blaming yourself for this situation. What would you be feeling if you didn't shame yourself?"
Mia thought for a minute and then quietly said, "Lonely… and my heart hurts."
"Tell me more about these feelings."
"I can't connect with her because she is so closed, and whenever I can't connect with someone, I feel lonely and my heart hurts. But I think there is something wrong with me for feeling this way."
"So you would rather shame and blame yourself than trust your feelings of loneliness and heartache?"
"Oh!...You know, I think I've been doing this most of my life! I think I do the same thing with Noah." (Her husband)
"How does your little girl feel when you shame and blame her rather than compassionately embrace and learn from her loneliness and heartache?"
"She feels alone and unimportant and bad about herself."
"Mia, right how, open to your Guidance and invite in compassion for the loneliness and heartache you feel when you can't connect with someone. Be very kind and caring with your little girl. She has very good reasons for feeling lonely. Let her know that there is nothing wrong with her for her feelings, and that you are grateful to her for letting you know, with her loneliness and heartache, when someone is closed and uncaring. Can you do this?"
"Yes! And it feels so much better - such a relief!"
We all learned to use shaming, blaming, anger, or withdrawal to protect against the loneliness and heartbreak of disconnection. It is very important to validate for yourself how painful it is when you can't connect with someone, especially someone important to you. But when you shame and blame yourself and distrust your own feelings, you disconnect from yourself, creating emptiness, aloneness, and feelings of abandonment inside.
Authentic heart-connection with another is one of the most joyous experiences in life. This heart-connection with parents or caregivers is vital for children to thrive. But, too often, we didn't experience the level of connection we needed to thrive, and we learned to shame ourselves rather than feel the profound loneliness and heartbreak of this lack of connection. We move into adulthood seeking the connection that we lacked as children, hoping a partner or someone will fill our vital need for connection.
But as adults, we need to connect with Self and Source before we can authentically connect with another. And it is only when we do connect with Self and Source that we can learn to manage the pain of disconnection with others without disconnecting from ourselves with our blaming and shaming.
If you continue to feel badly about yourself, you might want to notice how often you shame yourself to protect against your feelings of loneliness, heartache and heartbreak. You might want to start to notice that continuing to shame yourself creates the inner disconnection that leaves you feeling so empty and abandoned. You might want to try embracing your loneliness and heartache with deep kindness toward yourself and see how you feel. I guarantee you that you will start to feel much better about yourself, and you will find it easier to connect with others when you are willing to embrace your authentic feelings rather than continue to shame yourself.