CBT Shame Attacking Exercises - Terrifying!! - Page 5 - Social Anxiety Forum
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post #81 of 102 (permalink) Old 02-13-2008, 05:11 AM Thread Starter
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Re: CBT Shame Attacking Exercises - Terrifying!!


The acts you do should bring shame on yourself but not be disturbing to others. Imagine you are walking down a street and a lady walks past and farts. She would be embarrassed and you might go "OH MY GOD HOW DISGUSTING" - but you aren't mentally disturbed by it. Thats the level you are going for - you want people to look at you and think "what a nut job" as opposed to "is s/he going to stab me?"

Shame attacking is an EXTREME technique recommended for later in a guided, supportive therapeutic environment. ITS A BIT OF A KILL OR CURE, NICHE APPROACH FROM CBT/REBT, SO GO EASY!

On to concentrate on bright things Stuck around in hopes to help, didnt seem like there was much left I could do anymore ... good luck and comfort to those who are on their own path and hope for those yet to take their first step! Much Love
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post #82 of 102 (permalink) Old 02-13-2008, 09:01 AM
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Re: CBT Shame Attacking Exercises - Terrifying!!


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Originally Posted by yeah_yeah_yeah
A BIT OF A KILL OR CURE, NICHE APPROACH FROM CBT/REBT, SO GO EASY!
Ugh, so should I get out of this chicken suit? It took me an hour to get ready.

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post #83 of 102 (permalink) Old 02-13-2008, 11:35 AM Thread Starter
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Re: CBT Shame Attacking Exercises - Terrifying!!


rofl

On to concentrate on bright things Stuck around in hopes to help, didnt seem like there was much left I could do anymore ... good luck and comfort to those who are on their own path and hope for those yet to take their first step! Much Love
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post #84 of 102 (permalink) Old 02-11-2012, 06:31 AM
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what attitude are you suppose to have if somebody is being rude to you or insults you?
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post #85 of 102 (permalink) Old 02-12-2012, 07:51 PM
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^^ your supposed to accept people will disapprove of you, but even if they dont like you or your actions you'll be okay and the world wont end. the point is to do something you find shameful like singing out loud in public and watch the disapproving looks on others faces, and suddenly you'll realize the world wont end if you make mistakes in social situations..
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post #86 of 102 (permalink) Old 02-16-2012, 09:58 AM
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I'm afraid to try out alot of this stuff (minus the singing in public thing) because I'm black and look young (I'm 25 though), and I'll catch alot more heat than the average bear know what I'm sayin
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post #87 of 102 (permalink) Old 02-16-2012, 11:05 AM
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^^ your supposed to accept people will disapprove of you, but even if they dont like you or your actions you'll be okay and the world wont end. the point is to do something you find shameful like singing out loud in public and watch the disapproving looks on others faces, and suddenly you'll realize the world wont end if you make mistakes in social situations..
I wouldn't have been able to do anything like that a year ago. Now I find I can separate myself from others disapproval much easier.

Got a human directional sign job recently. The first day I was on a busy corner in the middle of nowhere. I was pushing myself since I'm feeling good right now and waved and said "hey dude, how's it going?" to a hard core bicyclist stopped at the light next to me. He looked me over with the meanest look on his face, sneared and turned back to look at the red light with a smug look on his face.

I just thought, "wow, it must suck to be so nasty" and smiled, congratulating myself on pushing myself and for not letting his negative attitude affect me. I wouldn't have believed it was possible for me to do all this before.
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post #88 of 102 (permalink) Old 02-16-2012, 04:23 PM
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One more thing i've done is drop things in public. I'm thinking of dropping my purse and letting everything fall out of it.
I dropped some things on the road with moving cars T_T and picked them up without thinking

Dressing up in a huge costume sounds fun. It has that anonymous element.. I want to do it

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post #89 of 102 (permalink) Old 09-23-2012, 12:12 PM
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Alot of the advice here is good and if it works that's the main thing. However, I think there's a difference between embarrassment, external shame and internal shame. Alot of the examples here seem like they would work for challenging embarrassment or external shame but what about internal shame, meaning even if someone doesn't know you did something but you feel you let yourself down and feel a need to tell someone to neutralise the internal shame. Could be over-reacting and obsessing over a small thing and getting a compulstion to tell someone. To challenge this maybe doing something that goes against a less important value you hold e.g. dropping litter and then not telling anyone may challenge internal shame. But obviously couldn't do big things that may make you feel bad. I guess these feelings aren't so related to social sittuations but more trying to be a perfectionist in some way.
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post #90 of 102 (permalink) Old 12-17-2012, 12:08 PM
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My therapist recently has got me started on shame attacking exercises. Decided to start small so she suggested wearing a silly hat in public. So I got a big wooly hat with a big stupid bobbin on top. I wore it around the block at night first time. Nobody paid any attention. Then I wore it to the shops at night. Again very little attention. Then I wore it to shops during the daytime. And guess what nobody bothered with me. So today I bought a stupider looking hat. Its bright orange and wooly with an animal face on it and two ears on top. Haven't wore it yet but plan to tomorrow. Hopefully it will attract some unwanted attention. Then I can challenge my beliefs simultaneously while getting disapproval from others.
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post #91 of 102 (permalink) Old 12-17-2012, 04:13 PM
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post #92 of 102 (permalink) Old 12-18-2012, 02:56 AM
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This sounds like a lot of fun. I live in a small town so I can't do the more extreme things like go to the sauna in a bigfoot suit, people would talk (not that would ever do that). But this exercise is definitely something I want to incorporate somehow, somewhen. Maybe a first step could be to use intenteonally bad spelling online ocasionalli.
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post #93 of 102 (permalink) Old 05-27-2013, 08:42 AM
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Reading all this reminds me of a time when I was waiting for my train and a guy in passing asked what my name was, and after I replied he said :"My name is X, hi!" and moved on. I thought it was weird at the time, but now I'm wondering if it was a form of shame attacking exercise... Not that I disapproved, I just thought it was weird. And it generally makes me nervous when people randomly talk to me and ask me questions about myself, but that moment was so brief that I hardly had time to react.

What I don't understand is how much is the focus supposed to be on receiving actual disapproval? Like, is the exercise only good if somebody disapproves? I mean, if I decide to go outside when I know my neighbor that I want to avoid is also outside as a challenge, I don't expect that person to actually disapprove or anything, but I will feel nervousness and shame. Does that not count as shame attacking?

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post #94 of 102 (permalink) Old 06-04-2013, 03:38 AM
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Originally Posted by KatyKamu6 View Post
Alot of the advice here is good and if it works that's the main thing. However, I think there's a difference between embarrassment, external shame and internal shame. Alot of the examples here seem like they would work for challenging embarrassment or external shame but what about internal shame, meaning even if someone doesn't know you did something but you feel you let yourself down and feel a need to tell someone to neutralise the internal shame. Could be over-reacting and obsessing over a small thing and getting a compulstion to tell someone. To challenge this maybe doing something that goes against a less important value you hold e.g. dropping litter and then not telling anyone may challenge internal shame. But obviously couldn't do big things that may make you feel bad. I guess these feelings aren't so related to social sittuations but more trying to be a perfectionist in some way.
Please don't drop litter.


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post #95 of 102 (permalink) Old 06-04-2013, 10:44 AM
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Hello

I am new to the boards and have been spending some time reading through posts. It is comforting to read that so many people are having the same experiences as me and that they fit under the label of Social Anxiety. Its also great to read of peoples progress.

I would like to try something called Shame Attacking Exercises that CBT recommends. It is when you do something to actually make people disapprove of you, like shouting out the floor numbers in a crowded lift or singing out loud in a department store. It is meant to show you that disapproval is not as cataclysmic as you might think it is and to help with a chronic lack of assertiveness.

I have been trying 'baby steps' with it. Little things like cutting in front of people with my trolley in the supermarket, or being a bit cheeky or rude to people, especially if they are rude to me. In this latter situation I would like to experiment with being downright obnoxious on occasion but I am scared of being shot down or beaten up. This is wrong because others do not see it that way ... Sometimes being rude is pretty good fun ...

I am having trouble (read paralysed) with going as far as calling out the floors in the lift or singing out loud. If anyone has done CBT, this is my thought process:

"If I sing out loud, there may be a guy there who will insult me and everyone will laugh. I will feel destroyed but laugh like an idiot. People will look down on me. Someone might push me or become physically aggressive. There may be a young girl there who is scared by my behaviour and tells a guard or assistant. I may see someone I know and they will think I've lost it. I have no right to impose my voice on other people. They are trying to shop in peace."

This is a pretty radical exercise but seems to be a core idea in CBT (Burns, New Mood Therapy). Can anyone offer me 'positive alternatives' to my thoughts above? Can anyone come up with 'baby steps' disapproval challenges for me that are a little less scary? Then I can build up to the harder ones!

If you see a young, dashingly handsome, but oddly nervous guy singing to himself in a department store near you, go and shake his hand!!

Ross
Hey Ross,

I think that sounds a bit extreme and you run the risk like you say of being/feeling humiliated which can make your situation worse. Have you heard of the Linden method? Its extremely effective for anxiety. Check out www.helpwithanxiety.net for more info

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post #96 of 102 (permalink) Old 06-05-2013, 03:10 PM
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Hey Ross,

I think that sounds a bit extreme and you run the risk like you say of being/feeling humiliated which can make your situation worse. Have you heard of the Linden method? Its extremely effective for anxiety. Check out www.helpwithanxiety.net for more info
I like how the link url implies that the website is that of a disinterested third party but I actually redirects the the official site of (dan dan da-a-a-an) The Linden Method!!!

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post #97 of 102 (permalink) Old 06-15-2013, 08:59 PM
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I do these types of things often. Which is weird. I think sometimes my anger problems override my anxiety.
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post #98 of 102 (permalink) Old 11-20-2013, 02:06 PM
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For the first time this actually seems like an fun idea and my heart didn't sink while imagining myself doing this. I am intrigued and I'm looking to see if it's worth a try.
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post #99 of 102 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 09:51 PM
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What good is it being unafraid of shame if all your friends are and find you embarrassing in public because of it
That can change radically from one person or time to the next.
For example all of my friends used to be hilarious in public, now they're total buzzkills.

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post #100 of 102 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 11:49 PM
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i tried it..then i ended up thinking i have totally lost it.....fear and panic came back stronger than before

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