Tag Archives: healing shame

Getting Clear on Your Money Issues

Just like there’s no corner of life that isn’t affected by oxygen, it may well be that no aspect of life is unaffected by money. True: in deep meditation, we don’t think about money, we don’t spend it, and we don’t want it. But lately, I’ve been realizing that my own spiritual bent has made me blind to a truth I’ve perhaps wanted to deny: this world really does operate on the basis of exchange, and the instrument of exchange most frequently used is money. If you want help getting over anxiety about money, first you need to understand your relationship to it.
Money is always there in our lives, in the background, like the bass line in a rock song.  There’s always someone trying to sell us something, or we need something that requires money to obtain. We need money for food, for shelter, for comfort. We need more money to protect our health, to educate ourselves, to care for others. There’s our personal history with money that we carry everywhere we go, the financial legacy that our ancestors passed down to us, the attitudes our parents implanted in us, the spiritual ideas about money that we adopted. These attitudes are always with us, as is the background tape telling us to be sure we’ll have enough for the next thing.
The desire for money is primal, just as is the desire chipmunks have for hording acorns. This is why so many loving siblings end up enemies when an inheritance is at stake. This is why so many otherwise compatible spouses end up hating each other. They don’t understand that the urge to have money and to horde is instinctual both in themselves and in their loved ones, akin to a survival need, and any loss of control of money feels like being deprived of food.  
Many of us deny that money matters as much as it does. Either that, or we resort to magical thinking about money—“if I have the right attitude, the money will come.” Goodness knows, there are enough books and movies out there reinforcing this belief.  Because we don’t know how to think about money, because it’s uncomfortable, we throw our hands up in the air and say, “the universe will provide.” It’s the same attitude we bring to the subject of death, leaving the timing and method of our death in the hands of the universe but hoping there’s some magic involved in beating the odds, if only we stay positive. Money feels mysterious to us, like death, shadowy and transient, something we don’t talk about. (I do believe there’s truth to the idea that attitude affects both prosperity and lifespan, but creating wealth is about more than thinking positive.)
I’ve been taking a Tapas Acupressure course on healing in relation to money and I’ve been amazed personally at how much there is to heal. I believe that most of us have issues to clear around money—whether those issues involve debt or earnings, having too little or too much, having shame around past mistakes, anger at having been ripped off, guilt at having exploited others, or fear about what may come.  And I think the first step in healing these issues is to bring them out of the basement of your consciousness and into the light. Once you know what you’re dealing with, you can clear it using TAT or another similar practice.
To begin to get clear on your own money issues, ask yourself these three questions and write your answers down:
  1. What about money am I not dealing with in my life?
  2. What is unfinished in my relationship with money or earning it?
  3. Where am I angry or ashamed or afraid in relation to money or earning it?

Let me know if I can help!

Dr. Hiyaguha Cohen is a certified Tapas Acupressure practitioner and life coach. She offers coaching by Skype and telephone worldwide, as well as in-person Hawaii counseling. Contact her at Hiyaguha@thelifechangecoach.com.


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Musings on Shame

Overcoming shame, healing shame, accepting our shadow side, forgiving yourselfShame is one of the three main blocks to seeing the face of God, according to the great Indian saint, Sri Ramakrishna. The first time I read that, something inside of me resonated so powerfully, because I realized that at a deeper level, it means that everything, absolutely everything, about ourselves has to be accepted. It also reminded me that just about everyone on earth has something deep inside that they feel ashamed of. In other words, we’re all ashamed of ourselves, but we’re all in this “shame-pot” together, and the irony is that shame usually arises because we think, “Oh, I’m the only one who feels this way or who did such and such.” And everyone else is thinking the same thing, that they’re the only one.

No matter what thought or deed you’re shamed by, you can be sure hundreds, thousands, or even millions of other people have had the same ugly thought or impulse. We all came to earth with egos—there’s just no getting around it, and egos cause us to do things, say things, think things that just aren’t pretty. But as Don Miguel Ruiz says in The Fifth Agreement , humans are the only species that keep punishing themselves over and over again for transgressions. When we carry around shame, we keep punishing ourselves nonstop, every minute, for something finished, done, gone.

The thing about shame is the more you try to ignore whatever shames you, the more you refuse to look it, the worse it stinks, like food leftovers stashed in the back of your closet. If you want to be free, you need to be brave and unearth the shameful truth. If you need professional help to do so, that’s nothing to be ashamed of. Remember, even the professional you see undoubtedly grapples with shame. Nobody is above it—nobody, except maybe a handful of saints.

I just saw an amazing documentary called What I Want My Words to Do to You about women inmates who had committed heinous crimes and who sought redemption. These women had all done terrible things, murder and so forth, but now they were in a writing group in prison where they wrote about their crimes, in detail, dredging up the shame and guilt they felt, accepting responsibility, facing their darkest selves head on. Their courage brought me to tears. We all have ugly places inside, and to transform the darkness we need to expose it to the light with the absolute bravery and honesty of those women. If they can do it, so can we.

Dr. Hiyaguha Cohen offers life coaching by Skype or phone and in-person Hawaii counseling. Click HERE to go to her website.

Thank you for visiting the Radical Love blog!


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Musings on Shame

Overcoming shame, healing shame, accepting our shadow side, forgiving yourselfShame is one of the three main blocks to seeing the face of God, according to the great Indian saint, Sri Ramakrishna. The first time I read that, something inside of me resonated so powerfully, because I realized that at a deeper level, it means that everything, absolutely everything, about ourselves has to be accepted. It also reminded me that just about everyone on earth has something deep inside that they feel ashamed of. In other words, we’re all ashamed of ourselves, but we’re all in this “shame-pot” together, and the irony is that shame usually arises because we think, “Oh, I’m the only one who feels this way or who did such and such.” And everyone else is thinking the same thing, that they’re the only one.

No matter what thought or deed you’re shamed by, you can be sure hundreds, thousands, or even millions of other people have had the same ugly thought or impulse. We all came to earth with egos—there’s just no getting around it, and egos cause us to do things, say things, think things that just aren’t pretty. But as Don Miguel Ruiz says in The Fifth Agreement , humans are the only species that keep punishing themselves over and over again for transgressions. When we carry around shame, we keep punishing ourselves nonstop, every minute, for something finished, done, gone.

The thing about shame is the more you try to ignore whatever shames you, the more you refuse to look it, the worse it stinks, like food leftovers stashed in the back of your closet. If you want to be free, you need to be brave and unearth the shameful truth. If you need professional help to do so, that’s nothing to be ashamed of. Remember, even the professional you see undoubtedly grapples with shame. Nobody is above it—nobody, except maybe a handful of saints.

I just saw an amazing documentary called What I Want My Words to Do to You about women inmates who had committed heinous crimes and who sought redemption. These women had all done terrible things, murder and so forth, but now they were in a writing group in prison where they wrote about their crimes, in detail, dredging up the shame and guilt they felt, accepting responsibility, facing their darkest selves head on. Their courage brought me to tears. We all have ugly places inside, and to transform the darkness we need to expose it to the light with the absolute bravery and honesty of those women. If they can do it, so can we.

Dr. Hiyaguha Cohen offers life coaching by Skype or phone and in-person Hawaii counseling. Click HERE to go to her website.

Thank you for visiting the Radical Love blog!


Continue reading

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