Meet Your Shadow

There’s so much information “out there” about shadow work and having to deal with the disruptions in our lives because of them, that it sometimes troubles me as to why people don’t want to improve their lives.  Maybe life is really good for them.  What I’ve found the most is that life has to hurt enough for people to begin paying attention.  

If attention had been paid, we might not be in the predicament we’re in personally or globally.  I truly believe our awakening is truly quite simple.  It’s what most therapies are attempting to help with – being mindful and in the present moment.  It’s what my clients and I work with together and it’s the only way to get out of the trap of overstimulattion of the nervous system. 

There are people out there that appear like they don’t have many problems, yet they’ll buy lots of things and baubles. (It’s not just people who overeat, smoke, drink too much, etc that have shadows.)  There are people thinking that they can just spend it away….again…and again…and again.  This type of behavior, which is common and sometimes admired by those without excessive funds, actually lives within the existence of the shadow.  But everyone has their own way of dealing with drama and trauma.

It’s wise to understand that trauma doesn’t always mean something bad happened like a rape, abuse, or even a car accident.  Trauma, in the subconscious mind, can come from things that might seem ordinary as an adult – but no so much to a child.

The subconscious mind contains our shadows – also known as rejected parts of ourselves. These rejected parts contain the emotions that we are rejecting. For example, maybe you were told that it is bad to get angry when you were a child.  So you stuffed down that emotion.  This is a rejection of a part of ourselves, allowing emotion to become stuck in our body. 
Our body is meant to process emotions because it is part of the subconscious mind.  But if stalled, because you don’t want to show the emotion (and don’t process it later in the day when you’re alone) then it gets stuck.  It often stalls out in an organ in the body and accumulates until we develop a bad habit or get sick.

There are what are called dark shadows and light shadows.  Anger could be an example for the dark shadow.  If you used to love to paint, but put it away because you couldn’t make time for it anymore, could be considered a light shadow.  In other words, the creative part was pushed away. 

A pretty simple experiment to meet one or more of your shadows is to go to a mirror and stare at your reflection.  What’s the first thing that comes to mind?

Is it – Oh, my eyes are gorgeous and I really love my yellow teeth.

Or is it more like – Oh, that wrinkle on my forehead looks like it’s getting bigger – I wish I could cover that up.  (Or that jowls, double chin, droopy eye, etc.)  Rejecting a part of your self is building upon older rejections of the self.  If you look into a mirror and reject something that you see about yourself, then you have met your shadow.  Say hello.

Seriously, the part of you that has been rejected by you (not necessarily by anyone else) needs love and acceptance to heal.  It can take time for that healing to occur or you can take an easier bus and do deep dive into the subconscious to release the stuck emotion.  I’ve done this myself and processed a negative emotion in about 5 minutes.  I was actually stunned by that.  I thought it would take so much longer.

Feeling the freedom is so much better!

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