Shadow work is not cool, its not something people want to brag about, or even talk about. No one wants to admit that they have nasty parts of themselves that they have hidden away. Everyone likes to sweep the weaknesses, the hatreds, the nastiness under the carpet.
It’s SO much more ego affirming to be able to list your strengths and talents. To be able to tell people what you are awesome at and to focus on those. Because, lets be honest, focusing on what is right about us feels so much better.
Focusing on the light part of ourselves is somewhat like trying to grow a plant with no rain. It simply doesn’t grow. When we take the time to explore our shadows, we open the door to amazing growth potential. Looking behind us at our shadow opens doors to amazing opportunities for growth and healing of past hurts. And can unlock talents we never knew we had!
As you work with your shadow you become more self aware. You see yourself and your flaws and talents in a much clearer light. This has the effect of making you more real. You become more grounded, better equipped to reach out to others while retaining a sense of self that keeps you from getting swept up in other people’s drama.
When you accept your own shadows and work to integrate them into your life, you find it much easier to not only see the shadows in other people, but to love those people and their shadows. Other people’s quirks and habits won’t set you off like they used to. In fact, you will have a much easier time expressing yourself to others, and truly listening to them in return.
Your health, physical, mental and emotional will start to improve. When you take the time to look back and heal old wounds you relieve yourself of emotional burdens that you may have been lugging around for years. In some people this has had the effect of removing chronic physical pain because they no longer spend their lives a tense bundle of hurts.
Facing your shadows and past hurts and no longer letting them define you as a person can help you make changes consciously, or unconsciously to many facets of your life. Self love becomes much more natural, wanting to nurture and care for yourself becomes automatic. This can have the follow on effect of eating better and gaining energy because of it.
As you begin to see yourself as you truly are, you will start to see the world with a clearer view as well. You will know which things spoken to you about yourself are true and which are simply cruel taunts that can be left behind. You’ll be able to view people with a less judgmental eye, knowing that there are reasons that you may never know for why they are the way they are. This compassionate view will color everything you see and do.
A sense of wholeness and completeness is one of the most amazing benefits of Shadow Work. Being able to see the whole picture and having a mature attitude while still being able to play and have fun. When you embrace your shadow you embrace balance in all things in your life.
So often we hide out creative talents; the ability to write, sing, draw, dance. For fear of what others might say. That fear of being laughed at or teased makes us keep our creativity locked safely away. When you embrace your shadow you embrace your ability to create. And you know that what you create is a thing of beauty to you and what other people may say about it will never change that beauty that you see.
I have found the time I spent doing Shadow Work to be some of the most life affirming, rewarding times of my life. I come away from each session feeling cleaner, lighter, and more complete. Each time I devote time to exploring and embracing my shadows I know that I am investing in me and learning to love me.
Time well spent.