we are not alone.
Shame resilience requires laughter. I refer to the kind of laughter that helps us heal as
Laughter is a spiritual form of communing; without words we can say to one another,
"I am with you, I get it."
True laughter is not the use of humor as self-depreciation or deflection; it is not the kind of painful laughter we sometimes hide behind. 'Knowing laughter' embodies the relief and connection we experience when we realize the power of sharing our stories--we are not laughing at each other but with each other.
One of my favorite definitions of laughter comes from write Anne Lamott, "Laughter is a bubbly, effervescent form of holiness."
A good belly laugh, singing at the top of your lungs, and dancing like no one is looking are unquestionably good for the soul.
They are also exercises in vulnerability. There are many shame triggers around the vulnerability of laughing, song, and dance. The list includes the fear of being perceived as awkward, goofy, silly, spastic, uncool, out of control, immature, stupid, and foolish. For most of us, this is a pretty scary list. The gremlins are constantly there to make sure that self-expression takes a backseat to self-protection and self-consciousness.
We hustle for our worthiness by slipping on the emotional and behavioral straitjacket of cool and posturing as the tragically hip and the terminally "better than." "Being in control" isn't always about the desire to manipulate situations, but often it is about the need to manage perception. We want to be able to control what other people think about us so that we can feel good enough.
We are good enough, just who are we are today.
No one else gets to vote.
When we don't give ourselves permission to be free, we rarely tolerate that freedom in others. We put them down, make fun of them, ridicule their behaviors, and sometimes shame them. We can do this intentionally or unconsciously. Either way the message is, "Geez Man, Don't be so Uncool."
The Hopi Indians have a say, "To watch us dance is to hear our heart speak."
I know how much courage it takes to let people hear our hearts speak, but life is way too precious to spend it pretending like we are super cool and totally in control when we could be
laughing, singing, and dancing.
Brene Brown _ The Gifts of Imperfection.