What does being shameless mean?

Philadelphia photographer Shower Set

I don’t know if it was just me…

Isn’t that the worst part of shame? That it truly feels like you’re alone in your shame.

Let me back up.

I went, like many, to Catholic School. (Yup, I’m the epitome of the stereotype.) Now, they don’t outright instill Catholic Guilt, but it’s built into the system. Now, the issue I really had, I never had a distinction between shame and guilt to help guide me. I just knew I always felt… BAD. Somehow as if I was irreparably broken, but forced to continue to trudge alone and afraid of being seen.

As it turns out, everything that was intended to be guilt, for me, quickly turned to shame… So, let’s look at the difference. Brene Brown is an expert of the subjects of vulnerability and shame… so let’s go to her on this one…

Based on my research and the research of other shame researchers, I believe that there is a profound difference between shame and guilt. I believe that guilt is adaptive and helpful – it’s holding something we’ve done or failed to do up against our values and feeling psychological discomfort.

I define shame as the intensely painful feeling or experience of believing that we are flawed and therefore unworthy of love and belonging – something we’ve experienced, done, or failed to do makes us unworthy of connection.
— Brene Brown
Photo Dec 20, 1 26 05 PM.jpg

To sum it up, guilt is recognizing you DID something “bad” or wrong, however, shame is the feeling that YOU are bad, that there is something essentially wrong with you

This is the space I found myself living in. (and I still wrestle with it). It is a feeling that is fundamentally in conflict with my chosen spiritual path. (I’m Pantheist for anyone interested.) I had to begin fighting back against the shame for the sake of my very existence!!

I found a few teachers (online) that have helped immensely, and found a medication balance to handle that part of the equation. However. for my, there is one more step I see in my journey. And that is helping other women see that it’s time to let shame stop holding them back from being their whole selves.

I am on a path towards being shameless and want you to join me!

I want to do a Shameless campaign, and am looking for ladies that would like to participate. There will be a few pictures, some video, and a bit of being vulnerable in front of me (initially), and the internet… as such a model release will be necessary. Are you ready to get shameless?

Name *
Regina SteedFord