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Shadow Integration

Remember the beginning of the movie Peter Pan? When Peter looses his shadow and needs Wendy to help him sew it back on. That's shadow work!! Just kidding, its not. But spiritual terms can be weird. With so much content on social media around spirituality and healing, sometimes Healers use familiar terms and without realizing we haven't made sure our audience has an understanding of the concept. These buzzwords seem to take on a life of their own. When spiritual terms become defined by prevailing social and cultural thought rather than an accurate description it can get confusing, quick. So if you're interested in learning more about "shadow work" grab a mug of something warm and lets have a quick chat.

Let's start with, "What is a Shadow, anyway?" The idea of a "Shadow Self" was introduced by the Swiss psychologist Carl Jung. The term Shadow is meant to help create a tangible concept of the hidden, dark side of the human psyche. The Shadow resides in our unconscious aspects of self and stores the unwanted, unprocessed qualities of the Self.

Shadow work is when we begin to observe, learn from and heal the things we keep hidden. I like to think of the Shadow as the compassionate place that houses all of the things I needed to hide at some point, in order to survive. There are many reasons why we would need the Shadow to hold on our behalf.

- Low emotional maturity. (This can simply mean being a child or never being given an example of healthy relationships and boundaries.)

- Home environments that are not hospitable to vulnerability.

- Lack of necessary resources. (Things like- time, education and support.)

- Continued traumatic experiences. When the hits keep coming it's hard to heal.

Shadow Work is the process of identifying and caring for the things that live in our Shadow. In doing this, we learn to integrate the Shadow and heal the pieces of ourselves that we felt the need to hide. Learning to acknowledge and love the things that make you feel shame, guilt or fear is an act of radical compassion. While I don’t believe any emotions to be inherently “bad,” I do believe that held emotions of any kind create imbalances. When the cost of that imbalance is causing becomes greater than the benefit of keeping something in the shadow, it becomes time to do the work.

In Shadow Work things like Anger, Shame, Guilt, Doubt, Depression and Hate become our teachers.

Anger shows us injustice and the places that do not bring us joy.

Shame illuminates the things that hold us captive.

Guilt reminds us of the parts of ourselves we have not yet made peace with.

Doubt shows us the limitations of our belief.

Depression gives us the opportunity to sink into the darkness of our depths and bring things up to the surface that need our attention.

Hate illuminates the boundaries we will not tolerate being crossed.

If we refuse to allow the dark to have as many necessary lessons as the light, we risk leaving vital aspects of ourself stuck in suffering for longer than what is necessary. It is my pleasure to teach you how to sit in the dark and not be afraid. It is my joy to show you how to embrace d

estruction when it comes. It is one of the most meaningful parts of my sacred calling to show you the way to move freely from shadow to light and love both.

If you're interested in pulling the skeletons out of you closet and giving them a big ol' bear hug together... Click the button down here to set up a session!

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