Trapped: How False Shame Steals Your Joy


Photo by Ashley Anthony on Unsplash

Does it seem like some kind of wet blanket hovers over you? Have you ever wondered why the “bad” feelings never seem to go away? Why is it that these negative feelings are so readily available? Why is so much that we are offered cloaked in some kind of negative feeling?

Are All Feelings Real?

In one way all feelings are real if they are felt. However, not all feelings derive from the same place. If you stub your toe, you will feel pain. It is a feeling generated by your experience.

There is another type of feeling, however – the feelings created by the stories we tell or the stories pushed on us. These feelings, generated by narrative, expectations, and entitlements are not real feelings. They are demands masked as feelings. So although you may experience real feelings because of your experience interacting with these narratives and agendas, the feelings being pushed on you are not necessarily true.

One of the ways that narratives are promoted to us is by suggesting that when we do not go along, we deserve to feel shame. This is actually false shame.

A Look At Shame

There are differences in how people perceive shame. VeryWellMind describes shame as, “Shame can be defined as a feeling of embarrassment or humiliation that arises in relation to the perception of having done something dishonorable, immoral, or improper.” So there is a strong connection between shame and integrity or honor.

Karla McLaren, who does brilliant work on the subject of shame, describes it as “… a form of anger that arises when your boundaries have been broken from the inside – by something you’ve done wrong, or have been convinced is wrong. While anger is the honorable sentry that faces outward and protects your boundaries from external damage, shame is the sentry that faces inward and protects your internal boundaries (and the boundaries of others) from your own incorrect or ill-conceived behaviors. “

For shame, then, to be healthy, it has to be based on honesty about what integrity is.

The False Shame That Steals Joy

All cultures create narratives that support their goals and intentions. Each culture also defines what they want from the citizens. There is a type of person who is lauded in each cultural system. We internalize the desires of our families and society and will try to meet the demands placed on us. When we do not we often feel vulnerable and ashamed. We are often treated with contempt and shame by others also.

If the social narratives and judgments are unhealthy in some way, our need to survive will be at odds with our inner integrity. The result is an inner conflict that is not easily resolved. We will find the shame messages from others painful but not be able to easily resolve the issue because we need to survive and of course we need others to do so.

The joy that comes from being in your integrity and offering your gifts to the world is then overshadowed by narratives and stories that cannot see you accurately. You may begin to feel invisible and worse.

How To Resolve The Issues of False Shame

It is important to learn to recognize false shame as an untruth. It is also important to understand that many of the ideas we propagate in culture are long-standing ideas about how life should be. Many of these beliefs and programs are inaccurate.

It helps to release the false programs that you have inherited and the easiest way to do that is through quantum healing, which directly releases energetic blocks from your energy body.

Releasing old programs is a wonderful way to reclaim your true integrity and authentic self so that when you feel shame it is based on a real violation of your own standards and not an arbitrary definition of who you should be. Authenticity is freeing. It keeps you from being trapped in painful arrangements that are unhealthy and do not fit who you are. You deserve better.

About Maria Hill

Maria Hill is the founder of Sensitive Evolution. She is the author of The Emerging Sensitive: A Guide For Finding Your Place In The World. In addition, she has created the immersive Emerging Sensitive Program using cultural and personal development frameworks to help sensitive people master their sensitivity and turn it into the asset it can be. She also offers The Magic Of Joy program for quantum healing and the Emerging Sensitive Community focused on living in the world as a sensitive person and navigating the challenging cultural shifts of our times. She is a longtime meditator, reiki master, student of alternative health and Ayurveda. Maria is a Certified Theta Healer and certified in Spiral Dynamics. She is an abstract painter whose portfolio can be found at Infinite Shape and also very interested in animal and human rights and the environment.


  1. Patty Schlossberg on September 23, 2021 at 4:43 pm

    This was a great article. The question I have is how do I go about receiving a “quantum healing”? Can I do such a healing for myself or do I need to see one who specializes in this? I know I could benefit from it for sure.

    Thank you.
    Patty Schlosberg

    • Maria Hill on September 23, 2021 at 4:55 pm

      Hi Patty, I am glad you liked the article. We are offering quantum healing here through the Magic Of Joy Program (details here) or you can locate a healer at this website.

      Best of luck,