Do you suffer, or are you a victim of, a condition or circumstance that makes you ashamed? I don’t mean a little bit embarrassed, I mean that you believe there is some sort of shame in who you are or some part of your makeup.

I guess that, as none of us is perfect, we all feel a little bit uncomfortable with something we’ve done or how we act from time to time. When we experience healthy shame based on what we know to be antisocial, undesirable or wrong then the system is working as it should. But there is also unhealthy shame which is inappropriate, limiting and often makes discomfort or suffering worse.

We pick unquestioned beliefs early in life, and this includes taboos and prohibitions that are not our own. They come from an earlier time in history, and are often spawned by out-of-date thinking, ignorance, or even bigotry.

Dodgy ideas can lead to social stigma, and that is tough enough if you are on the receiving end of it. If you unwittingly carry an inner stigma about some aspect of yourself, than you will not feel able to do much about it.