Woven tightly into the more complicated colorful fabric of communication is an all too common thread, called SHOULD.
‘SHOULD’, is the scout party SHAME sends out to see if they’re any vacancies in your mind and heart.
SHOULD’ is one my very own red light indicator words; when I hear it, I know what’s up, and I know if I don’t ride out to meet that scouting party with a firm show of force, SHAME is coming for a pillage fest.
When we self-talk with ‘should’, its incredibly harmful to our own self-worth.
When we start thinking, saying and believing what other people SHOULD be doing, we are also priming our relationships for trouble.
Where this comes up most often with the clients I work with, who are struggling to communicate AND to get their needs met in their partnerships, itsounds a little like this…
I shouldn’t have to tell them; they SHOULD just know!
He/She should already know this is important to me.
He/She should just do this, without being asked or told!
This should just be common sense!
An of the above statements, ringing any memory bells, for you?
No one is a mind reader. Even that mind reading act you saw in Vegas that time, was not real.
When we use the above terms, when we allow ourselves to think this way, we are positioning ourselves in a place of immobility and non-compassion. We become quite stoic in our unwillingness to aid our partners, we have no interest in ‘making things easy’ for them, in actively setting our partners up, to succeed.
Somewhere along the line, we nominated our self as the test facilitator, and we are not running any prep sessions, so you better figure this out or get a failing mark.
And when our partners do get it wrong, there is, for some of us, somewhere nestled deep inside, a pleasure button that is gleefully satisfied.
Shaming other people, consciously or unconsciously, has a dangerous feel good element to it.
Think about it. When we see or have experienced other people putting us down, we know that, really... they don’t feel good about themselves. People do indeed, get a short burst of comparative based self worth. Issue is, it’s not real self worth, its not sustainable, and we tend to feel even worse about ourselves shortly thereafter.
Are you taking a position of making things harder for your partner? Or making things easier for them?
Are you setting them up to succeed? Or fail?
You know what else shame loves? Failure. Mistakes. Missteps.
When we are dogged by shame, loving someone in the best way we know how, becomes almost impossible.
The enemy of shame, is empathy.
You want to kill shame with fire? Unleash empathy on it’s ass.
If we're not creating an atmosphere of compassion and helpfulness, our partners success rate drops drastically. And when they get it wrong, yet again. Oh why hello, SHAME.