Shame Attacks

I’m reading this book "The Father Factor: How Your Father’s Legacy Impacts Your Career."

The section on shame hits me hard.

It tells me to note what things trigger shame attacks.

I had a lot of shame attacks this Shabbos in Loma Linda.

I was around a lot of people from my youth before I became such a Torah stud.

I realize it is when I recall instances I’ve been pathetic to try to get nurturing.

I hate it when I am weak and whiny and manipulative and attention-seeking.

Why can’t I just be strong and manly?

From page 99:

Nearly all your shameful feelings and actions originate in your belief system about yourself and your early father-child relationship. The most powerful and lasting wayt o shift your shame-based beliefs is to change your core beliefs about yourself. The key is to start liking and accepting yourself. Shame and the need for perfection are based in self-loathing. You need to expose these faulty core beliefs by writing them down. Once you put them on paper, they will not seem as powerful or as emotionally consuming. The rebuttal will be necessary to start a new inner dialogue with yourself.

Keeping a journal of your inner thoughts and positive rebuttals to those negative inaccuracies is mandatory. Remember that your thoughts precede and influence your feelings.

Third, create a mantra, motto, or saying that reminds you of your new core feelings, thoughts and actions. This mantra can be anything, such as "I can do this"; "I am good enough"; "Everything is fine, and everything will work out." Be creative with your mantra because it will become an unconscious reminder of how you are changing your father’s influence to a more balanced view of yourself.

Fourth, consider the value of nurturing yourself. What this means is to be more compassionate, accepting, and supportive of your abilities, gifts, and dreams.

Consider anything that gives you a sense of empowerment or that refreshes your energy and perspective.

The two phrases I say to myself most often are "F— me" and "I’m f—ed." I wonder if these are the helpful nurturing mantras the good doctor prescribes?

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been covered in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and on 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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