Change must begin somewhere – let yours start here!
Compromising “WHO” you are is rarely a healthy behavior ~ stay true to your values, beliefs, and your inner self! We know when we are compromising, it’s that little voice in our heart or head that says “you shouldn’t be doing this…”. This is not to say ‘don’t compromise’ at all. Compromising, finding a mid-point between two options, is necessary in any relationship but it is NOT necessary if the mid-point violates your value or belief system.
When we DO behave in a way that is inconsistent with our beliefs it opens the door for the feeling of ‘shame’. Shame is defined as A painful feeling of humiliation or distress caused by the consciousness of wrong or foolish behavior. This definition uses the word ‘consciousness’, which not only means an overt knowledge of something but it is also that ‘little voice’ – our ‘inner self’ that speaks to our heart.
When counseling people with anxiety or depression I will often ask questions that seek to understand if the client is holding onto a feeling of ‘shame’ and will frequently find that when the behaviors producing shame are discussed and put into perspective or self-forgiven that there is some resolution or reduction in symptoms.
Sometimes we are not “consciously” aware of a belief system and/or that we are violating it. I find this is sometimes true of individuals who have core beliefs based in fundamental religious doctrine that prohibits (FOR EXAMPLE) premarital sex. If the person succumbs to social or peer pressure or gets caught up in the heat of a moment and engages in non-marital sex, there may be a UN-conscious violation of a core value that begins to aggravate internal defenses.
WHAT TO DO:
Forgive yourself! Everyone makes mistakes ~ NO ONE is perfect! Use the experience to learn about yourself, your core beliefs, and how you ‘self-talk’. Try not to think of anything in terms of ‘good’ or ‘bad’ but in terms of what is ‘healthy’ for you versus ‘unhealthy’. Do not compare yourself to others – that’s how the compromise probably happened in the first place. Your emotional health is based on what is in YOUR heart / mind ~ not in another.