13 Nov How I overcame feeling less than…….
As most of you know, I am a DBT therapist, Linehan Board Certified. This means that I went through a very difficult application process with several requirements, followed by an exam, case conceptualization and a review of me in the act of providing DBT in session — experts reviewed me in session. I passed all of these requirements, which means that I can effectively deliver DBT. I share this as a preempt to my post today because it highlights that I know how to work with people who have difficulty regulating emotions, especially shame, which has taken a hold of me today.
I have a friend of great importance. We will keep this person a secret, but it is important to highlight that this person is objectively important in, not only his field, but the world. We had recently become friends again on social media. It was a friendship that could be fun and light, serious, and enriching (this person shared their love of music with me, which I started to love). Things went well until I hit a few roadblocks in my own life. This has been a rough year for me, with several deaths, as well as a few things from my past. I noticed that I started having thoughts (e.g. what if X things I am a loose cannon — a version of something I hear from my own clients). I consulted my wise mind — shame, shame, shame. Shame was the emotion driving those thoughts. I began to reinforce shame by unknowingly seeking validation. A couple of weeks of this snowballed in shame reaching it’s highest in many years. I decided to take a short break from my friendship to figure things out. My friend was very understanding, even though it didn’t make sense to this person.
Step one, I decided to share my intricate dance with shame.
Today, I used my wise mind to identify, and use opposite action (sharing with people without seeking validation, walking proudly making eye contact, . I am going track shame based thoughts in the new few weeks and use opposite action, as well as using some in vivo exposure to bring down the intensity over time.
To be continued.