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Have you thought about what it will take to let go of your shame? To finally own your story?
It’s not an easy thing to do. It takes time and consideration.
That’s why psychotherapist, author, speaker, and media contributor Dr. Zoe Shaw is joining me for another episode to talk more about shame.

In this episode, you’ll get suggestions for mitigating the power of shame in your primary relationship:

  • You’ll hear why it’s important to answer our anxious questions
  • How to harness your imagination to reduce shame
  • And how you can make a distinction between grief and shame so you don’t get stuck in a false story



Tell yourself the truth of your shame

How can you answer the question you’re afraid to hear?

What if I lose my partner?

What if everything falls apart?

What if I’m not respected anymore?

Often we leave these anxious questions unanswered. We can’t find the perfect answer, so we let the questions fester and our anxiety gets worse.

Explore The Worst-Cse-Scenario

You may not be able to come up with a specific answer to those questions, but there is an answer that will calm your anxiety.

What is the worst-case-scenario? We’re afraid to ask this question because we think we can’t handle it. But when you look at the worst-case-scenario honestly, without flinching, your imagination stops spinning, and goes to work on a solution.

“If that happens, I know that I have the strength to do what I need to fix it,” Dr. Zoe says.

The next time your imagination bombards you with a thousand questions, find a SINGULAR question and imagine the worst-case-scenario.

Then ask yourself, “What strength do I have to handle that?”

Use your imagination to rewrite your shame story

Your imagination has the power to exacerbate shame.

We create false stories about why that thing we said or did was awful. We feel horrible so we must be horrible.

Have you ever noticed you don’t question yourself when your imagination believes horrible things about yourself.

But you regularly question yourself when someone compliments you, or when you dream of something that’s just out of reach.

Isn’t it interesting that we all have this relationship with our imagination? Believing the worst with ease, but constantly questioning the best?

Don’t believe the shame story your imagination makes up. Instead, use your imagination to tell a different story.

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Comparison sets you up to feel shame

Every single person is struggling with something difficult.

No one escapes this.

But people don’t wear their struggles on the outside. They keep them as hidden as possible, and put on a brave face.

Shame creeps in when we compare our private struggles to the brave-face-exterior of others.

Not very fair, right? This sets us up to fail the comparison game. Then you don’t feel “good enough” and that sets you up to feel shame.

When you try to walk into somebody else’s story, you sabotage your own.

Focus on your own story and stop feeling the shame that comes from comparing yourself to someone else.

Try this: 

Dr. Zoe wrote an entire book filled with self-care principles and prompts called A Year of Self-Care: Daily practices and inspiration for caring for yourself.

In the last episode, we talked about how writing this book helped her begin her own self-care journey out of shame and into owning her own story.

I invite you to practice a habit this week for your happily ever after. Create a self-care recipe for someone you dearly love who is in need of some self-care.

Then try following that recipe yourself.

How about you?

Text me at 970-210-4480 to let me know what you’re most taking away from this bonus episode with Dr. Zoe.


Connect with my guest

In this episode you heard from psychotherapist, author, speaker, and media contributor Dr. Zoe Shaw. Dr Zoe is a relationship expert who specializes in the subject of complex shame and codependency. On her podcast, Stronger in the Difficult Places, her guiding premise is: “We’re not fixing them, we’re fixing you, and that changes everything.”

Want to here more from Dr. Zoe? You can read her blog or pick up her book A Year of Self-Care: Daily Practices and Inspiration for Caring for Yourself .

Want to stop arguing and start connecting with your spouse? This FREE e-course will offer you habits to improve your marriage communication so you can smile more and fight less. Sign up to improve marriage communication.

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