Boss Up with Bevin Your dream life is at the end of your comfort zone


The Role of Shame in Pursuing Justice

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — Bevin @ 7:41 pm

(This post is a series of daily letters from me to my future children reporting from the emerging paradigm.)

Dear Kids:

Something that keeps coming up for me is how much of a role eradicating shame plays in the toppling of systems of oppression.

Toni Morrison said about racism “If you can only be tall because somebody is on their knees, then you have a serious problem.” 

White supremacy continues to go unexamined because white folks choose not to talk about it. And we have the privilege to not talk or think about it, which is what white supremacy does. It’s shame that makes people need to feel tall at someone else’s expense.

A call we white folks are receiving now is to have uncomfortable conversations about race. This system of oppression will only topple as we choose to continue to dismantle it with other white folks.

So many people don’t speak out because they are afraid to get it wrong. They are afraid to cause further harm, that people might not like them anymore–shame!

Life paralysis comes from being too afraid to put anything out in the world that’s imperfect. Perfectionism is a stronghold that keeps you paralyzed and does not produce results. You stay stuck in fear and shame. (This is all based on the Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown.)

One of the things that works best for me to cure shame is grace. Having grace with myself and grace with other people helps me release and recognize shame when it happens. I want to be an effective leader and encourage other folks to release their shame so they will at least try. Try having the hard conversations with Trump supporting relatives. Try connecting to a neighbor even though you feel ashamed that you’ve never introduced yourself.

Connection is where we are going to build this revolution and it’s going to require all of us to get outside our comfort zone, day by day.

Perfectionism has stolen so much peace and progress from my life. My hope for you is that you know that while you’re never going to be perfect, that you will always strive to be the greatest you that you can be. And that you recognize shame when it comes up and are able to diffuse it so you can get back to being great.



Selfie from last night–these are my quarantine bangs. Another life lesson I had to release shame about that I’ve learned before–always cut them much longer than you think because bangs shrink! My friend Sonya reassured me in 1-2 weeks they’ll seem way less short.

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