Previous Post – Taming Shame
The day you don’t feel shame being naked is a wonderful moment. It reconnects the dots that external forces had disconnected. It feels like a weight has disappeared from our shoulders. It opens new perspective and makes us feel a regained freedom.
It opens the door to a shameless attitude and nude life. A lack of shame is often linked to arrogance or hyper-vigilance, narcissistic behaviors. If we can’t disregard those personality disorders that happen in any community, including the nudist one, we aren’t considering those extremes here. We care about others and ourselves, we just freed ourselves from the shame of nudity that social, culture and religion want to impose on bodies.
What Being Shameless Means
If shame is felt, it’s also imposed by others. Being shameless means to deflect shame that others want to impose on us. In the article The importance of being shameless, the author, Mike Ervin, defines good and bad shamelessness. Starting with bad shamelessness, Ervin writes it’s the one “that will do or say anything to advance a self-serving agenda, no matter who gets hurt.”
On the other side, good shamelessness is about “flaunting that which you’re supposed to hide. It’s the polar opposite of apologizing for who you are.” What a beautiful proposition for nudists. When you become shameless about your nudity and others, you stop hiding and apologizing. You have to respect others and have them move with you not against you. Easier written than done, but it’s the price to pay for the freedom of our bodies.
Ervin also says that shameless people laugh a lot, “humor defangs shame.” They are “immune to the toxicity of shame”. This is to me the most critical aspect of being shameless. Shame is toxic. People commit suicide because of being shamed. People fall into mental health disorder because of shame. Cultivating shamelessness is the antidote to those ailments.
Think again for two minutes about nudity. Who has been hurt or killed by seeing somebody naked? People may get aroused because of the embedded link between nudity and sexuality, but nobody has been killed or hurt by seeing a naked person. Why shame a nudist? For one reason and one only: because of his or her shame.
Being a shameless nudist is about rejecting others’ shame. This doesn’t mean you should impose your nudity in all circumstances. This means you should stand firm about rejecting the shame that others want to impose in some circumstances. It takes time. It takes effort. It takes one decision: to be a shameless nudist.
Get Nude and Move
Are you nude while reading those lines? If not, why? Reading or browsing the web doesn’t require any form of clothing. I’m nude. It’s a beautiful Saturday morning and I wanted to jot down those ideas. I made a pot of coffee, grabbed my Mac and wrote. I’ve been nude since I came back from work yesterday evening and will stay the whole weekend. In a few minutes, I will put my running shoes on and will go jogging. If you ask, yes, I will be jogging nude, as I’ve been doing for years. I became shameless.
Of course, by asking the question are you nude, I don’t want to try to sound proselytizing and imposing nudity in all facets of life. Your life, your body, your decision! I doubt extreme positions. I believe in balance. It happens I read or garden or walk clothed, for respect of others around who would be uncomfortable, or just because I feel good being clothed. However, in a vast majority of cases, I’m nude all day and I’m just advocating that if you’re a nudist, or want to become one, nudity may become your preferred choice, shamelessly.
Let me dive a little bit more into this important notion of shameless balance. I will take a simple example of one of my typical days. As I sleep naked, when I wake up, I go and have breakfast, you guessed naked. Then, I either workout or go for a run, and am still naked. When back from exercising, I meditate, journal, and plan my day, before having a shower. If I need to run some errands or go to work, I will get dressed accordingly. If not, my day will unfold naked.
If a neighbor, a friend or a delivery person comes home, I may or may not stay nude. I would say in nine cases out of ten, I will stay shamelessly nude. The last case is about not shocking (respect once again) and it will mostly concern the delivery person, as all my neighbors and friends know I’m a nudist, have seen me entirely naked and don’t care anymore. But it happened that I got dressed with neighbors or friends as I felt it was more appropriate to the matter discussed. Any reasons for not staying nude in those situations? Not really, just a feeling. Like a vaccine doesn’t protect totally from contracting a disease, shamelessness doesn’t protect you totally from a feeling of inappropriateness. Life goes on and I’m still a nudist, and still nude in nine cases out of ten.
Have I always been like this? No! I made the decision to become like this and to unstick the shame label from my nudity. There were and still are situations that I feel shame coming back, and made the decision to push it away. I feel so well nude that when a situation crawls under my skin to make me uncomfortable, I acknowledge it, weigh it, and more often than not, make the conscious decision to push my comfort zone and stay nude. Life is short, play naked, as the image shows.
Life Is Short
Have you ever told yourself how fast life unfolds? Albert Einstein said that time is relative. And it’s true that it’s relative to how you live. When you’re doing something you love, it seems to fly fast. When you’re doing something that you’re not passionate about, it seems to move slowly.
We’re on planet Earth, on average for less than a century, and those thirty plus thousand days have to be enjoyed fully. The only way is to be ourselves, happy and proud to be who we are. This means in many ways to be shameless, to deflect shame that others want to throw upon us.
“Don’t do unto others what you don’t want done unto you,” said Confucius and is an approach I live by. But what if others try to do unto you something, you dislike like blaming and shaming your love of nudism? My first approach is to try to explain what nudism is about then leave if shame is maintained. I have no tolerance for shaming.
Life is far too short for letting others use their discomfort or mental games against my happiness. Nudism, as we’ve already seen in the previous chapters and will see in the coming ones, contribute deeply to happiness and well-being. It has so many benefits that I refuse the shame game some people want to play against nudists. My best weapon is a smile and embracing joy!
As we will see in the next chapter, nudity is joyful. It’s probably one of the ultimate innocent joys of the human being. It’s sometimes seen as a regression into childhood. So be it, if it brings that levity life is sometimes lacking. Do you feel better naked as I do? Great, build your joy on this feeling.
Joy and happiness are contagious. More than sadness and anger. A healthy life requires joy and happiness. A lot of diseases and ailments are linked to sadness and anger, like many other negative emotions filling our body with hormones that have a destructive effect on the long term. They are needful emotions for flight or fight reactions, but love, joy, and other positive emotions help grow healthier bodies and minds.
Being happy and joyful protects us also against all the evil that runs around us. The world sometimes seems mad, the power quest leading to atrocities. Joy participates to our sanity. By embracing nudism, we chose to embrace joy. By consciously embracing joy, we lower anxiety and eliminate shame.
I always think of joy as Captain America’s shield or Wonder Woman’s Amazon bracelets. When somebody wants to shame me, I wear a large smile and laugh. This makes the shamer uncomfortable and makes him or her think I’m crazy (which I should probably be, but blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven). I’m not crazy, I’ve chosen the most sensible path to others’ shame, to let it slip as water’s off a duck’s back. Joy is the ultimate peace weaponry against shame and hate.
Embracing joy is accepting the simple fact that nudity is joyful, as we will see in the next chapter.
Next part – Chapter 5 – The Joy of Nudity – Tying all the benefits together
Strip Nude, Stay Nude, Live Nude and Share the Nude Love!