“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life, and you will call it fate.” – Carl Gustav Jung
The Shadow Self is described as your past pains that have not healed or repressed desires, emotions, and impulses. The ones that are in the dark – at the very back of our being, hidden from our conscious awareness.
To know about your shadow self, you have to do shadow work. This can be done through meditation or journaling. You will bring your shadow into life. You will dig into repressed desires or emotions. It’s about exploring parts of ourselves that we don’t quite understand or aspects of ourselves that we don’t want to acknowledge.
Shadow work is a practice that promotes healing and self-growth. It allows you to raise your vibration to a level that no one can influence you without your consent. Because you know who you are as a being.
This practice helps you know yourself more – not just who you are today but who made you who you are today.
The Importance of Knowing Your Shadow Self
Your shadow self is the part of you hiding behind in your unconscious, which can drive some of your behavior. The shadow self comes to us by causing us to feel triggered by something – it can be someone else’s words or actions or it something that makes you want to lash out at others.
Sadly, most of us are not aware of what lies in our shadow, and these unknown parts may continuously affect how we act today.
The shadow self does not have any idea whether it’s sabotaging us or not. But the fact that it remains hidden gives it the power to seep into our daily life, behaviors, and beliefs. It can also become our defense mechanism, even if we have no idea where it came from. That is why it is important to know your shadow self, to let it resurface so that you can work on it and converse with it to create inner peace.
Steps to Own Your Shadow Self
- Surrender and Accept
Shadow work is the process of working with your shadow to erase its negative effects in your life. It is also about becoming one with your past hurt, repressed desires, and negative emotions through acknowledgment. Because if you don’t accept these and become one with them, these can affect your vibration in one way or another.
Sometimes, we tend to push bits and pieces of ourselves inside us, and these parts make up our shadow self. It can start from your childhood days, even up to now as an adult. Basically, we don’t know how many ‘bits and pieces’ we have tucked away. When you bring it to light and process why you hid it and re-accept it one by one makes up shadow work.
Shadow work is surrendering to the unknown that you built inside of you and accepting it for who it has become. I, for one, have experienced being face-to-face with my shadow. It saw it as a bundle of negative emotions that I had to untangle. Some felt familiar, while I couldn’t determine where other parts were rooted.
But when I finally accepted it, I knew I had become at peace with my shadow self.
- Keep the Questions Coming
Since it’s all about resurfacing these strong, negative emotions or experiences, you can visualize it like you’re pulling a rope from a very deep hole. As you pull and find hidden parts of yourself, continue to ask why you chose to hide them in the first place. The repetitive questioning will allow you to know what triggered the need to bury it.
Uncover layer after layer as you keep pulling; it can range from emotions to unhealed wounds to awful experiences to deep-seated traumas. You will never know what your shadow self is composed of.
- Destroy Limiting Beliefs
Shadow work may be a scary experience, but it is rewarding. Confronting your shadow can help your progress in the present. The more you let these dark desires creep unconsciously, the more it will eventually lash out.
Just like Carl Jung’s quote, it may appear in your present actions, and you will justify it by saying: It happens. No, it shouldn’t be normalized that way. Shadow work is an effective way to reconcile with your past hurt, rejection, intimidations, and repressed desires.
It is the key to moving forward in life peacefully.
When you dig up a lifetime’s worth of painful emotions or experiences, it is also possible to uncover limiting beliefs that you’ve unconsciously created. Do you feel like you’re not worthy? Or you don’t deserve certain things. You might believe that you are not enough for a lot of things in life, and that’s not true. That’s your shadow, self-sabotaging your hard work.
It is time to replace these beliefs with positive and healthier ones. When you are able to acknowledge and accept your shadow self, you can destroy these limiting beliefs and live life to the fullest.
It is recommended to tap into your shadow self on a monthly basis so that you can heal with it. But during the time that you aren’t engaging with it, take time to write to it.
Affirmation: I cannot merely bypass these emotions. This is not the way to move forward. I will heal and grow with each emotion and experience.
This affirmation allows you to open up with the idea that you will continuously converse with your shadow. It helps you become ready. It ripens your spiritual relationship with yourself. As you go deeper and deeper with every visit, remember this affirmation.
Remember: You cannot simply master your shadow self overnight. It can take months, even years, to fully reconcile with it. But as you constantly do steps one to three – you will get there.