What is Shadow Work?
I am going to explain my take on shadow work and all the ways it has benefited me. Shadow work, for those who are not familiar with it, is making the unconscious, conscious. This can be very painful honestly but completely necessary for those on the path of authenticity. The more you uncover from the depths of your shadow the more you understand yourself. You can then take action from this place of self-awareness resulting in better choices that are more aligned with what you truly want.
What Shadow work did for me:
- Less intense emotions.
- Healthier habits that worked more holistically.
- Helped me respect my past and transform it.
- To not attach or identify with my emotions. “I feel angry.” vs. “I am angry”.
- Integrate “Self Sabotaging” patterns and thoughts.
- Helped me to not be afraid of my emotions and gain skill in riding emotional waves without suppressing or denying what I felt.
- Gave me the tools to be empowered when experiencing difficult emotions
- Being able to give myself the love, support and presence I deserved and was starving for.
- Taking responsibility for putting myself in unsafe situations.
- More compassion and understanding towards others (especially those who had hurt me or that really pissed me off)
I don’t want to give the wrong impression that these came easy. Shadow work takes a willingness to see the truth even if it may be painful. This I hope is something that people get more acclimated to because I do believe this is a necessary step for all people right now.
“So how do I do shadow work?”
Well I can only say what I’ve come across and done myself. And the first place I would recommend going is to Teal Swan’s Youtube video about shadow work (attached below). All of her video’s have something to do with the human shadow and making what we don’t know about ourselves conscious.
I also have used her book “The Completion Process” to heal my inner child. It has a step-by-step visualization process that guides you through feeling the emotion, allowing the memory to surface and re-experiencing and restructuring the memory. I recommend someone guiding you through the process because then you don’t have to go back and forth from internal to the book.
Another way I do shadow work is asking myself questions and allowing the answers to come.
“What needs to be felt?”
“What is poisoning me?”
“How am I poisoning myself?”
“What am I holding on to?”
“What am I not hearing?”
“What would be scary about knowing or admitting?”
These are a couple of many ways to start doing shadow work. There’s nothing better than seeing something you’ve been denying, resisting, or ignoring become integrated. So you don’t have to fight or control yourself. Or waste all your energy throughout the day to hold up your mask.
Thank you again for reading this post and I hope you found something to take away. Leave a comment if you had a realization or want to share your feedback.