What is the Shadow and what are the benefits of becoming one with it?
As you grow up, your parents, your siblings, your teachers, and society as a whole will try to drum certain traits in your character out of you. Traits such as greed, need for attention… These traits, however, don’t disappear. They go deeper in you and form a second, shadowy personality that pulls the strings from behind. Your shadowy personality will seep through your mind, in the form of desires and impulses, and you will find the perfect justification for your behavior.
For example, a person who becomes a movie star tells us that he likes cinema, but in reality, he refuses to admit that it is his excessive need for attention that draws him to the stage. To himself, he justifies his behavior with a deep love for art. If he is more honest with himself, he will admit that he simply loves attention.
This is what you profit from knowing your dark side – self-knowledge. And self-knowledge is very important if you want to be a master of your emotions, and of others. You will become much harder to be manipulated by skilled sooth-sayers.
If you want to become your highest self, you have to accept the ugly part of you, as well. You have to become your best version of your whole self. You can’t simply cherry-pick personal qualities.
Understand that your shadow doesn’t define you.
As you get to know your shadows, you must understand that your shadow doesn’t define you. It doesn’t make you a bad person. Carl Jung thought that all evils come not from accepting our shadows, but from rejecting them.
Keep a Journal
No matter how hard you meditate on your shadow self, it will be useless if you don’t write down your findings.
Watch yourself closely
This is the single most important part of shadow work. The shadow manifests itself in stressful situation, or when you have to think fast. This is the most important part of shadow work. Don’t just dismiss this anger tantrum you threw as “not me”. If it’s not you, then who is it?
Take the time to observe yourself from the perspective of an outside observer. This is easier said than done.
Shadow work continues all your life
You can’t complete it over the weekend and be done with it. Don’t let this dishearten you. Once you begin, it will get easier with time.
What do you think? Do you believe getting to know your shadow is worth your efforts, or you would rather keep that door sealed and shut? Post in the comments.