I still catch myself cringing when I ask for what I need. Whether it’s telling the waiter that I have the wrong order or turning down a night out with friends because I’m sick, it somehow seems saner to relinquish my own needs to appease others. Over the course of my life I’ve been able to pinpoint exactly where this crazy self-abandonment came from. Shame.

How many times have you been told, “Shame on you” as a child or even as an adult? How many times have you felt so affected by those words that you made decisions in an effort to avoid feeling that way? Or more importantly, how many of you have unconsciously allowed shamed to percolate your mind and control your lives?

It’s the reason why we may feel guilty about taking care of ourselves, why we believe that we inherently don’t deserve happiness. At the root of it is a little child who fears that they are unworthy, unlovable and undeserving of anything good in life.

I had a horrible grammar school teacher who reminds me how ridiculous shaming others is. She scolded students for putting their hands in their pockets. It still boggles me that someone could interpret such an innocent behavior as bad. What it taught me is shame (whether it’s about your weight, your parenting skills, your lack of friendships, etc.) has no rhyme nor reason. It usually has more to do with the person who’s shaming you than yourself. This week’s posts are a good reminder of that. Hope they’ll help put shame in perspective in your own life.

How Mindfulness Can Enhance Relationships
(Adventures in Positive Psychology) – Our relationships can always benefit from a little tuning up. Surprisingly, mindfulness can also be used to strengthen yours. Find out how here.

Why Being The ‘Cool Parent’ Isn’t So Cool
(Addiction Recovery) – Would you rather be cool or caring? When it comes to parenting, it might seem more fun to be friends with your kids, but at what cost? Here’s why being cool could end up hurting your teens.

Why Shaming People To Lose Weight Doesn’t Work
(Weightless) – One strategy to help people lose weight is not only ineffective, but does a disservice to our society while hurting the kids and adults affected by it. Read why shaming never works and what does work when it comes to encouraging healthy positive change.

The Three Factors of Loneliness
(The Emotionally Sensitive Person) – When you see the world through the eyes of loneliness, you might misinterpret other people’s behavior as negative and you may unintentionally repel the very people you’re longing to connect with. It doesn’t matter how many friends you have, loneliness is a serious experience that can happen to anyone. This post lists a few suggestions to help.

Outsmart Your Stress at Work: The “Email Meditation”
(Mindfulness & Psychotherapy) – Instead of better time management skills, how about learning ways to be mindful in every moment? This is the strategy that’s helping individuals become more productive and less stressed in their workplace. Take a break right now with this simple step to help you feel more mindful throughout the day.