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Trauma Skills Summit.

August 17–26 2020

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Trauma Skills Summit.

August 17–26 2020

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August 17–26 2020

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Trauma Skills Summit.

August 17–26 2020

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Day 9

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Trauma, Shame, and the Transformative Power of Self-Compassion

Chris Germer, PhD
Psychologist, mindfulness and self-compassion teacher

Trauma and shame are closely intertwined: experiences of shame are often traumatic, and traumatic experiences can lead to shame. Shame is also a predictor of PTSD as well as a host of other psychological disorders. The antidote? Self-compassion. Treating ourselves with kindness and understanding when we suffer, fail, or feel inadequate is perhaps the most important gift we can give ourselves. Join Dr. Chris Germer to discover principles and practices for alleviating trauma by compassionately addressing shame.

Session Highlights:

  • Exploring what self-compassion is and its many evidence-based benefits
  • How to recognize shame and its manifestations in daily life
  • The close association between trauma and shame
  • Three skills for using self-compassion to work with shame safely and effectively
Chris Germer, PhD

Chris Germer, PhD

Dr. Chris Germer is a clinical psychologist and codeveloper (with Kristin Neff, PhD) of the Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) program, which has been taught to over 100,000 people worldwide. He is also the author of a popular book, The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion, and coauthor (with Kristin Neff) of the professional text Teaching the Mindful Self-Compassion Program and The Mindful Self-Compassion Workbook. His next book, expected in 2021, is on self-compassion as an antidote to shame. Dr. Germer is an MSC Teacher Trainer, and he leads MSC intensives and workshops around the world.

Healing Shame

Bret Lyon, PhD & Sheila Rubin, LMFT
Cofounders of the Center for Healing Shame

Shame is a combination of a powerful emotion and a state of freeze, similar to trauma. It can be incredibly painful and destructive in large doses—but it is designed to protect us. In this session, we will explore what shame is and how it affects our bodies, thoughts, actions, and relationships. Once we understand what shame really is, we can transform our relationship with it into something healthier and actually useful. This homeopathic dose of shame is referred to as “healthy shame.”

Session Highlights:

  • What shame is and how to begin to transform it
  • Understanding our four main reactions to shame
  • How our nervous system attempts to protect us from the full impact of shame, but these reactions actually create more problems
  • Coming Out of the Shame Freeze: Grounding Yourself and Setting a Boundary—a practice for healing
Bret Lyon, PhD & Sheila Rubin, LMFT

Bret Lyon, PhD, and Sheila Rubin, LMFT

Dr. Bret Lyon and Sheila Rubin are the founders of the Center for Healing Shame, an organization dedicated to educating and bringing practical awareness and training in healing shame and trauma. They provide training and certification in the Lyon-Rubin Method for Healing Shame, both online and in person, to practitioners all over the world. They have given talks, presentations, and workshops across the US and Canada. Rubin is a marriage and family therapist, with over 25 years’ experience combining somatic therapy, attachment work, and drama therapy. She has written many articles and book chapters and has taught at California Institute of Integral Studies and JFK University. Lyon holds doctorates in psychology and drama, and he has been a teacher of somatic and emotional mindfulness for over 30 years. He has taught at Tufts University, Pomona College, and the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. Their website is healingshame.com.

Inspired by today’s presentations?
Share your insights below.

  • J says:

    I loved your meditation Sheila. Where could we get the longer version please?

    • Sheila says:

      So glad you enjoyed the presentation. For the guided visualization and hidden shame guide book those are gifts you receive when you click to buy the Trauma Summit.

  • Ruth Hochman says:

    Thank you so much for this summit. I have complex PTSD and other mental and physical illnesses. I am only now on my journey of healing. A deep sigh. I had the opportunity to listen to several of the talks so far. All deeply spiritually informative and enlightening. But tonight’s presentation with Dr. Germer created a space for me to cry compassionate tears. The whole talk really helped me gain spiritual insight into just how profoundly the many forms of abuse, assault and trauma, injustice and loss have greatly impacted my ability to be in the world. Thank you so much. So grateful for this. I am definitely going to follow up on the co.mpassionate mindful training program.

  • Chandana says:

    Many thanks for the Sounds True team once more for introducing us, the viewers, to different but important aspects of trauma.

  • Esther says:

    I enjoyed both presentations from Chris and Bret and Sheila. Thank you for sharing your humility, your experience and skills in working with clients. I feel strengthen, encouraged and laughed at your humours too. Truly appreciate!

  • Anna says:

    Thank you so much for this summit, a wealth of knowledge, practical exercises and love.

  • Prili says:

    Self-compassion saved my life as recovering perfectionist!

  • Lotoya says:

    I enjoy this presentation it hit home a lot..
    Before being exposed to meditation / mindfulness studies . For years I experienced trouble speakin in public.
    Today I am able to stand and present to a group of persons . I think I was able to get over the shame by understanding that we are all human.
    Along with that I think the self doubt came from alway being negatively judge has a child.

  • tony says:

    In Australian sign language, the sign for shame is passing the hand in front of the face

  • Judy says:

    Thank you, Chris Germer for this great presentation on the in-depth understanding of shame and the power of self compassion to release it. Very helpful to me.

    Happy anniversary Brett and Sheila. Thank you for your healing shame talk.

  • Carolena Harrison says:

    I’m loving these classes because it not only helps with fostercare but also helps in my job because I deal with sex offenders and drug addicts it helps with understanding them and ways to help them

  • Andrew Pavlovic says:

    Brett and Shiela : Is it possible to obtain the document depicting effects of shame ?

  • Samantha Berryessa Cowart says:

    Dr Germer ‘s approach and information was super interesting and helpful to me.

  • Kim says:

    I am so thankful to Chris Germer for giving me the missing piece of the puzzle of my own Anxiety! It is definitely Shame and has given me insight. I have his book and plan to read it!
    Also I enjoyed Bret and Sheila’s presentation that followed as it has given me clarity on all that I experience because of Shame and how to counter it and understand my “stuck-ness” and the perpetuating cycles that come around.
    Very Grateful for this webinar…. 🙏🏻

  • Catherine says:

    I was really moved and inspired by Sheila and Bret’s presentation of their work. I could feel my own frozen shame begin to thaw, as Sheila shared how she works with clients (near the end of the video). Thank you so much. I am feeling hopeful. Your work sounds very special. I heard a shaman from Greenland share some of his wisdom many years ago re: climate change, he said, “The real climate change is melting our frozen hearts.” It sounds like your work is a key to this effort.. The inspirational poem you shared helped to anchor in the greater context of this work, at this time, for us all. Thank you. Thank you.

  • Erica says:

    Loved the healing shame presentation, what a beautiful energy from Dr. Lyon and Shelia Rubin. Some really healing information, thank you.

  • Erica says:

    Really loved these presentations. Dr Germers presentation was so healing for me, thank you.

  • Geraldine says:

    Grateful to hear about shame as talking about it, releases it. Exellent presentations, resonnate with my experiences of shame and it s so good because at last someone speaks to me and speak out what happens inside of me. It feels reassuring.

  • kelly says:

    Ironically, today’s topic in a therapy course for stop domestic abuse that I undertake was on ‘shame’. This presentation really helped me to expand on and consolidate my understanding surrounding this emotion so I just wanted to say thank you.

  • Beth says:

    Dr. Germer – that was the best presentation on shame that i’ve ever heard. thank you!

  • sonia sanchez says:

    This was amazing thank you:)

  • sarah says:

    OMG, the last 30 minutes turned into pure gold as I realized shame was centre stage in trauma therapy/work, yet for sure, few therapists directly address it enough or at all, so healing cannot be completed. It’s that simple and now obvious.

    • Bret Lyon says:

      YES, YES, YES!!! I discovered the connection when I was studying trauma with Peter Levine. Every traumatic experience contains shame – and shame is a mini-trauma. So important that trauma therapists understand how central shame is.

  • Kathleen says:

    Absolutely excellent!!
    Learned so much in a gentle way.
    Thank you,
    Kathleen

  • susan h dean says:

    Thank you very much for this informative and helpful presentation.. I have learned a lot and I know it will be helpful and healing.

  • Lou Anne says:

    I have been enjoying the wealth of knowledge every single day of this very timely summit. Thank you to all for your time and passion during these lectures!

  • Sabine Besse says:

    In my experience self compassion develops towards the end of our healing journey. Often, I believe, there need to be done many steps before that becomes possible. There can be core beliefs preventing us from even trying to give ourselves love, or we are so cut off from our body or self awareness that needs to be found again.

    In the way that we adapt new experiences as a child through the modelling of our parents, many of us will need a model (therapist etc) who gives us compassion before we can make it our own.

    • Sybs says:

      Yes Sabine I was thinking the same thing & totally agree. During the presentation I asked myself how I started the process of feeling self-compassion & self-love, and I realised it took me many years of therapy, until I was even stable & aware enough to know who I am. And a compassionate therapist doing temporary re-parenting definitely is a crucial part of my journey. Wishing everyone lots of love & I made good experiences with talking to myself in the mirror as well.

  • Sr Rose Mwangi says:

    Well done God bless you

  • Sr Rose Mwangi says:

    Any time you share on mindful self compassion you touch the core of my life experiences that characterizes the way i behave. Again you have such a great ability to touch my heart towards growth. I feel you are a heart person and speak from the heart with concreteness that just strikes for even divine transformation. You are an amazing person in your being and sharpened expertise.Thanks for sharing about your public speaking anxiety and the value of just being kind to self.I identified the reason why if i have to speak in public am never ready up to the last moment. I have learnt how to deal with myself with kindness. God bless you.

  • Janna says:

    I withdrew from social contact to avoid the emotion of shame. The consequences cost me a different life

    • Marc says:

      I’m sorry, Janna, you lost an alternate (more desired?) life to shame. Shame also convinced me to detour into an avoidance-based job-path. Luckily, and thanks to grace and an angel of a counselor, I recognized and confronted the shame, and the result is that now, in my late 40s, I am finally reclaiming my preferred job-path (hasn’t been easy!) and making the sacrifices needed to spend the second half of my life doing what I am truly called to. May you find the healing you seek and the life you authentically long for.
      This presentation is a great re-affirmation of the new path I’m on; I hope it inspires you too.

  • Eva dos: January 3, 1985 says:

    John Bradshaw was the first I knew to write about “Shame” when he anonymously published a small recovery book for Hazelton in the 1980’s. He went on to write & research more under his own name with shame recovery being central to his work. The quotes on slides that Dr. Chris Germer started with in his talk by Tangney/Dearing, 2003 & Dr. Brown are actually the words & work of John Bradshaw. (1933-2016) example of his writing: https://creativegrowth.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/bradshaw_shame-1.pdf

  • Feather VT says:

    Very useful info and extraordinarily helpful! Thank you so much

  • Janna says:

    When l felt shame from 3 til late adulthood. The feeling was when people looked at me they saw my shame. I didn’t know the reason then why l had that overpowering emotion.

  • Alana says:

    Today’s presentations extremely thought provoking and inspiring. Understanding the depth of one’s self but having the courage to reveal it to another is a scary pathway. To not only allow yourself but to give yourself permission to heal and for someone else to give you the permission to heal is very difficult to imagine and feels impossible. Perhaps there is a 2% window of hope.

    • Sheila says:

      Thanks for getting inspiration from our presentation today. Yes, perhaps sometimes there’s a 2 percent window of hope. And when we step into that 2 percent sometimes even a little more is possible.

      • Cecilia says:

        Thank you Sheila and Bret. I’m one of those people who has done a lot of inner work. I was beginning to understand I had a lot of shame, and was grateful for the chance to hear professionals speak to it on this summit. Your presentation inspired me! I agree, healing shame heals trauma. More puzzle pieces falling into place, more healing, more peace. Many blessings to you both!

  • Carolena Harrison says:

    Can this whole training be purchased anywhere these are are wonderful teaching I would love to share with my co workers

  • John R Lakvold says:

    Loved the Lyon and Rubin presentation. There were so many wonderful quotes from their presentation.

  • Bruce says:

    Dr. Germer’s presentation reminded me of Dr. Abraham Low, MD’s very useful self-help group Recovery International. We can choose to focus on helpful thoughts such as: “Feelings are not facts; they can lie and deceive us & tell us of danger when there is none.” “Self-condemnation gives symptoms duration.” “Self-torture is a favorite pastime of nervous & anxious people.”

  • Shreya says:

    could someone please give me the name of the poem and the poet from the healing shame presentation? It was so beautiful and I would love to reread it

  • Mona van Heerden says:

    Thanks so much Bret and Sheila. I really learned a lot and you inspired me to look more closely at shame and the damage it does to the self. All the best for your work and thanks for sharing it with us.

    • Sheila says:

      You are so welcome. And be kind to yourself as you slowly integrate what we talked about and how it relates to you.

  • Gen says:

    Thank you Dr. Germer. What an amazing topic that struck a cord deeply within me. I have been ashamed for years did not have a name for it and didn’t realize it that it was deeper than I thought it was, until I listened to your presentation on self-compassion, shame and self-love.
    The part of the presentation that stuck a cord deep within me is when you mentioned that “shame is an innocent emotions” I was shocked at what you said and found it hard to believe. Then a light bulb starting flashing in my mind with questions; for example, what does he mean, but we were taught that we should be ashamed b/c of what we did, b/c of our feelings – negative/positive, b/c of our attitude, b/c of our behaviours, b/c of our approach, b/c of our disagreement, b/c of standing up for ourselves even when we know that standing up we are going to be pushed back down — all these get stuck in our world of shame and its very difficult to tease it out in just this 1 hour of presentation which was beautifully presentation. Wow! What an amazing way of bringing to the forefront of our mind issues of self-compassion/shame and to repeat this important mantra – “Shame is an innocent emotion.” Thank you! Ques: can we just asked to be accepted and recognized rather than just want to be loved as part of your presentation stated? Thank you for an amazing presentation amazing and meditation as it relates to shame, self-compassion and self-love.

  • Natascha Lancaster says:

    I hope this is useful: as a child abuse survivor, I blamed all my needs for the abuse, including and especially, the need to be loved. (“It is because I needed to be loved that I got abused, therefore, I must suppress/kill off that need.”) It is therefore paramount that therapists be very careful in their use of language when talking about needs, and avoid saying things like “it is the need to be loved that caused/led to/is associated with trauma and shame” as this can reinforce the survivor’s core, self-blaming belief. Instead, I feel it needs to be spelled out over and over again that it is the abuser’s abuse of power that made the child’s need to be loved feel dangerous and at fault, not the child’s natural need to be loved. Thank you.

    • Ka Mei Cheuk says:

      So well said

      to be spelled out over and over again that it is the abuser’s abuse of power that made the child’s need to be loved feel dangerous and at fault, not the child’s natural need to be loved.

      This puts the accountability that the wrong done to the victim is not because of the victim’s need… but the abuser’s abuse of power

    • Sheila says:

      Thanks for the depth of your sharing. I agree It is not the child’s fault.

  • Mona van Heerden says:

    Thanks so much Chris, I learned a lot and will definitely try to be first of all more self compassionate to myself.

  • Diana says:

    Thank you Chris for sharing how to understand why we feel shame and the common humanity of shame and how self-kindness can help us with self-critisism. I loved the meditation. Is it possible to download it?

  • Amanda says:

    How do we get hold of the visualisation exercise and the guidebook Sheila and Brett talked about please? Thank you. Great presentations today

    • Sheila says:

      Thanks so much! And thanks for asking about my Hidden shame an resilience guidebook and guided visualization. Those are gifts that come directly to you if you buy the Trauma Skills Summit package- just a click away.

  • Liz Crawford says:

    I found Dr Germer’s presentation very interesting and useful. It’s the best piece of CPD I have done on shame. I feel that I truly understand now why self-compassion is so effective. Thank you so much.

  • Sigal says:

    Hi, just wanted to share a thought over Bret and Sheila’s presentation, on the list of words for ‘healthy shame’ I would swap humility with humbleness. The way Bret explains what they mean ie accepting things that we are not capable of doing anymore or at all, like flying is about being humble, humiliation is negative word and per se imposes negative feelings of shame and loss.

    • Sheila says:

      Thanks for your comment. I agree that humiliation is negative. We didn’t mean to say humiliation. We were trying to express the opposite of .We are hoping to convey Healthy shame can be something that can step just a little bit our of toxic shame.

  • Syma Sanford says:

    I found Chris Germer amazing. I am deeply grateful. thank you all for providing this to all os around the world.

  • Frank says:

    Oh Chris please get rid of that beard. Why would you want to look older? I do truly appreciate your wonderful explorations into the applied emotional experiences and journeys having been following you recently in the transformational work between you and Christine Neff. I am deeply touched for being part of our journey.

  • Ana Bordan says:

    Everything was interesting and useful
    I would be grateful if I could receive a certificate stating that we have been together these days
    Thank you very much!

  • Ashley H says:

    Chris thank you. My first experience of you and it has felt so full of loving warmth from you. Interestingly I did my dissertation on shame about 15 years ago and my final paragraph describes how shame is a sob for love: like a wounded animal (I wrote) that cowers in hiding needing loving rescue but afraid and even growling in defence.
    For years I have been putting my arms around myself, responding to my ashamed child from my maternal warmth, soothing. It works.
    Ashley

  • Aletta Bosman says:

    I really enjoyed Chris Germer’s presentation. We old just need to be loved and get rid of self loathing.

  • saskia says:

    For me interesting and very informative sharing by dr Germer and like the practice. I did also feel resistance though from the beginning because I did get the impression that it were western scientists who virtually invented the ‘notion’ of shame and self compassion. I think this is incorrect as Chinese Confucius (dated BC) wrote about it. And I imagine other cultures too. I also wonder if it is universal. I felt alarmed when at 37.57 I heard: “Even Hafiz in the fourteenth century ….” Why was the term “even” used? In the sense that it is not expected that that was known at that time? By that culture? Is this western centrism?

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