Market research survey

Thank you for agreeing to take part in market research for Love Not Shame’s brand new membership community.

This page contains an overview of the community and details of all the different resources that will be provided in the community membership, along with some sample content so that you can get a clear picture of what’s included. Then, at the bottom of the page is a 5-question feedback survey. I would appreciate it if you could fill in the survey as honestly as you can so that I can get a clearer idea of whether this idea is viable or not. None of the survey questions are marked as required so feel free to skip any that you’re not sure about. If you have anything else you want to add, you can just email me at: lovenotshame@runbox.com.

If you have time for a chat and would prefer to give your feedback via a conversation, that’s awesome. I can arrange an in-person or online meetup at a time to suit you. Just send me an email: lovenotshame@runbox.com.

Please can you let me have your responses by Tuesday 9th July 2024.

As a thank you for taking part in the market research, I would like to offer you a couple of months free once the community launches. If you’re interested in this, please can you include your email address in the survey where it asks for it so that I know who to send the offer code to.

Membership community overview

The membership community will be a monthly membership community. People can join by paying a monthly or annual subscription fee and then they will get free access to all the resources and live classes. The aim of the community is to help people to break free from shame.

The resources will include yoga and meditation classes, peer support groups, self reflective prompts, discussion prompts, contemplative meditations and live soul care peer groups. The resources are evidence based (i.e. they’ve been proven in studies to help people with shame) and they are also things that have helped me on my journey to get free from shame.

The shame-free community is not intended to replace therapy but rather work alongside it.

The roadmap towards healing from shame

I’ve categorised the resources into three areas because these are areas where I personally see the biggest need for healing. These are:

  • Connection to self (this includes yoga, meditation, daily self-reflection/journaling videos, self-compassion exercises)
  • Connection to others (this includes small group peer support, discussion questions and one-to-one buddies)
  • Connection to spirit (this includes meditations in the Christian contemplative tradition and peer group soul care sessions) – note that although this is something that has helped me to heal, there will be many who don’t want to participate in this section but this section is offered for those who do want it.

Below is a roadmap towards healing from shame that I’ve devised. There are three roads – connection to self, connection to others and connection to spirit that converge at a roundabout and the idea here is that you keep going through the monthly content and attending live sessions which will put you onto the road to healing.

The individual components

Yoga

Yoga has been found to increase body satisfaction and self esteem. The yoga I teach is trauma informed – based on the principles of trauma-sensitive yoga – and I make it as shame-free as possible. For example, by not offering a hierarchy of pose modifications but presenting each as equal (which they are!); focussing on how a posture can fit your body rather than how your body can fit a posture; making it about how a posture feels in your body rather than how it looks etc. You can read more in my recent blog post about shame and yoga. There will be a selection of short and longer yoga videos in the membership library for people to access at any time and I will also do a monthly live yoga class via video call and the recording from that will also be available in the membership library.

Here is a sample of what the yoga will be like (don’t feel you have to watch it all, it’s just to give you an idea):

Meditation

Mindfulness practice has been linked to increases in self-esteem, and approaching emotions such as shame in a ‘non-judgemental’ way (a key feature of meditations like mindfulness) has been found to help people heal from shame. I will offer a short pre-recorded meditation practice every month in the community membership. Here is a seven-minute example meditation (again this is for information only, you don’t have to listen to it all):

Self compassion

Self-compassion has been found in studies to significantly reduce shame and it’s one of my favourite tools in my own healing journey too. I will offer one simple, short pre-recorded self-compassion exercise like the one below every month in the community membership.

Peer support

I believe that connection with others and vulnerability are key to healing from shame so peer support is central to the membership community. In her famous TED talk, the power of vulnerability, Brené Brown defines shame as a fear of disconnection – the belief that if people knew what we were really like they would reject us. Her research showed that the people who overcome shame are those who are wholehearted and authentic and fully vulnerable.

The reason why this part of the membership community is so important to me is that so many people with shame (and I was one of them) find it impossible to be authentic and develop deep relationships because their shame tells them they’re not good enough and will only be rejected if they try. So I want to provide a safe space where people can practice being vulnerable with one another with ground rules to protect them from bullying and rejection. I want to go first to be the one to share vulnerably so that others have the courage to do the same.

The idea of this will be to have small groups of around 4-6 people with a leader (at first it will be me) meeting once a month, where people can build trust and a sense of safety and develop deep, vulnerable relationships; and that vulnerability can spill over into their offline relationships too. I will also assign one-to-one buddies to anyone who wants them, and give them discussion prompts to help them deepen their relationships further.

Daily learning and self-reflection/journaling videos

Self-reflection has helped me on my healing path to understand my shame better and where it comes from. It helps me to spot the shame in the moment and practice techniques to process it, rather than acting on it in unhelpful ways. For me this goes hand-in-hand with self-compassion. I’ve also hugely benefitted from learning about shame and how it manifests. I’ve come a long way in the past six-or-so years from not knowing I was experiencing shame and thinking I was just a bad person, to being able to recognise the many ways shame shows up in my life and overcome them. Understanding shame and understanding how and why it shows up in your life (also called critical awareness) are the first two steps in Brené Brown’s Shame Resillience Theory, based on extensive research.

I plan to produce a daily short video (1-8 minutes long) with a brief teaching about shame and a self-reflection/journaling prompt. Community members will be invited to share in the comments below the video about anything that has come up for them so that everyone can learn from each other and grow closer together in community.

Contemplaltive meditation/prayer and group soul care

Spirituality is known to give people identity and meaning and help them cope with mental health problems. But at the same time, elements of spirituality can be shaming and spiritual abuse is common. For me, as a survivor of spiritual abuse, as well as sexual abuse in a church environment, I have a lot of shame associated with spirituality, but it’s also been extremely healing for me. I expect that many of the people joining the membership community will not be interested in spiritual meditations but there will likely also be people for whom these will be a real comfort.

Feedback form