Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Challenge: Be Shameless

I’ve recently been editing a book about child development and just about every chapter in it makes reference to ways parents or caregivers can screw up their kids by causing the kids to feel unnecessary shame.

Shame is a unique emotion, generally overused in our society, and in my opinion, there are very few times a person should actually feel shame: murder, harming someone or something, or general non-compliance with the Golden Rule (do unto others…). Yet, many, many people feel shame on a daily basis for reasons that are completely unwarranted. Focusing on the issues that us big girls deal with, we often feel shame regarding our bodies, our perceived lack of self-control, and surprisingly, feeling good about ourselves.

It’s taken me 3 years to wear booty shorts to practice and in bouts. THREE YEARS. During that time, I’ve chastised myself too many times to count for eating this or that or blowing off the gym, and many more times I have feel bad about thinking I look good, which is the most fucked up of all.

This weekend I’ll be at BrewCon, the annual WFTDA meeting in Milwaukee, and many of you will be too. But, no matter where you are this Memorial Day weekend I want to challenge you to be SHAMELESS for 3 whole days.

So, from the time you wake up Saturday morning until the time you go to bed Monday night, don’t let yourself feel shame. This isn’t to say the challenge is a 3-day pass to go buck-wild and be a gluttonous asshole – to the contrary, make this a time that you remain true to yourself and follow your own values, but whatever you do, do not put yourself in a position to feel shame.

It’s probably going to creep up on you, maybe when you get up and look in the mirror, maybe after you have had diner with friends and your pants are snug, or maybe when you’re in a room with a group of people and you start to compare yourself to others. Be mindful. Be conscious of your thoughts. If you start to recognize what you’re doing, even if you started doing it subconsciously, pull back, reflect, and stop whatever action is causing shame – just say “fuck it.” It’s only 3 days.

I’ll be doing this too, so if you see me this weekend and I ask you if I “look fat” or something like that, slap me. Okay, don’t slap me, but you get the gist – you have permission to call me on it.

Although I’ll be away, CFRB will be up first thing tomorrow morning. Check it out.

And remember, just say “fuck it” (god, I wish I had a shirt that said that, mimicking the “Just say no” slogan from our childhood…).


Tami said...

Okay that sounds like a plan but how about the 3 days following. How about saying don't fuck it I am staying on the straight an narrow for 3 days! It is only 3 days I can stay focused and be aware and explore my options, make good decisions. Find something that may make you feel good about yourself and give you a reason to care. Get your nails done, cut/color your hair, kiss a stranger, I don't know but try real hard. It is only 3 days!

steak knife said...