Evelyn “Champagne” King’s top 10 dance hit “Shame” from 1978 is not only enjoyable and freeing to dance to, it includes a very emotionally freeing sentiment. She proclaims with confidence, “Love is in my heart, tearing the rules apart, so why should I be ashamed?” Isn’t that the truth! What frees more completely than unconditional love?
Emotional freedom involves understanding the difference between “healthy” and “unhealthy” shame.
If we are feeling guilt over an act that hurt someone, that is the healthy version of shame. That feeling is telling us that something went against our value system. It’s a signal to make amends and rectify the situation so that we can renew our state of well-being. Once we’ve forgiven (if we were wronged) or asked for forgiveness (if we were the hurtful one), then let it go.
Unhealthy shame, on the other hand, is when we allow ourselves to be defined by a weakness or something we have no control over.