Healing Shame Handout

Methods for Healing Internalized Shame

Based on work by John Bradshaw from Healing the Shame that Binds You

In his book, Healing the Shame that Binds You, John Bradshaw suggests ways we can heal and overcome the toxic shame that causes us so much pain.

  1. Develop a support system of good, non-shaming, non-judgmental people.
  2. Honestly sharing our feelings with these people.
  3. Seeing ourselves “mirrored” (having our feelings honored and respected) in the eyes of at least one non-shaming person.
  4. Working a 12-step program
  5. Inner child work
  6. Honor all our feelings including abandonment, vulnerability, powerlessness, etc.
  7. Using techniques like journaling or talking about feelings as a way of healing.
  8. Learning to recognize the parts of ourselves that we are denying and embracing them - Accepting our wholeness.
  9. Learning to express our needs and wants by becoming more self-assertive.
  10. Increase awareness of situations that trigger shame.
  11. Learning how to deal with critical and shaming people by practicing assertive techniques
  12. Learning how to handle our mistakes and having the courage to be imperfect
  13. Have the courage to look at old shameful memories that hurt us, knowing that acknowledging them will cause them to diminish.
  14. Use prayer and meditation to create an inner peace where we feel connected to our core self and our personally-valued Higher Power.
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