By Judith E. Lipson, M.A., LPC
If you’ve ever been involved in therapy or self-improvement you have unknowingly been involved with your shadows. Additionally, you might be surprised to know that if you have ever been angry with another person, you were likely interacting with your own shadow in that situation.
The shadow is that part of you that you’d prefer to not admit to or look at. Interestingly, after doing your shadow-work you may find it easier to accept your human-ness, and even accept your imperfections, and yourself, as being ‘just perfect’.
Shadow work may seem like the hardest work that you have ever done, but it is also the most profound for providing insightful life-changing transformations. Here are techniques to begin your shadow-work.
Since many people want to ease into making life-changes, you can begin with the more traditional self-improvement efforts that you’ve already considered. Are any of your actions now habits that are not serving a beneficial purpose? Do you want to take control of that now? Dealing with these issues will familiarize you with the process of making changes and allow you to realize that though there might be emotional discomfort, it is temporary. Confidence and security are paramount when you are addressing the tough issues that you wish you didn’t see – your shadows.
When you have adequately tackled one or more of those habits/behaviors and are ready to dig deeper, consider the following questions that were shared at a recent retreat by Karlta Zarley to identify a potential shadow issue for your exploration.
- What is no longer needed?
- What is no longer wanted?
- What is no longer in your best interest?
- What are you afraid to look at?
- What have you never even considered?
- What is not tangible, yet you still know it’s important (for instance, an intuitive knowing)?
- What have you not seen at all (obviously one of the hardest to find)?
Although shadow work can seem daunting, [Read more…]