Loving the broken pieces back together: owning your shadow

It’s a big part of the mission. 

You know that I love to show up here really happy, full of joy and full of love, and sending you a ton of light. And: there are dark days, yes. There are pieces that sometimes feel like broken. There are shadows, and trust me, I’ve spent a little bit of time pushing those away, trying to pretend they’re not there, trying to bottle up the feelings, trying to ignore the feelings. I do a lot of work to digest them, whatever necessary, speak to a skilled therapist, or do a course, or read a book to educate myself.

Whether it is about setting boundaries or about not letting my ego run the show, or whatever it may be. What is left over is there is always some shadow element to deal with, and we all have wounds from past traumas, from stuff that happened that wasn’t pleasant. Whether it was as kids or whether later on, or just in our daily lives, the little and the big things. It’s just part of the human experience, and that’s okay. So what do we do with that, acknowledging that we have to go through struggle?

That way we can grow, so our souls can expand. What do we do with that? 

Feeling it

The first piece, you may have guessed that from the “owning it”, is feeling it, not stuffing it away, not bottling it up. Can we find the courage to be with what we sometimes label as unpleasant emotions, or sides and aspects of our mind that we don’t particularly enjoy?

When we get jealous, and tell ourselves off, “that is not a useful thing” and just pretend that it’s not there, just ignore it. Or when we tell ourselves we “shouldn’t be angry” about something. 

The authenticity in this piece about owning our shadow and loving our broken pieces back together is maybe more about being authentic with ourselves, more so than with other people. Yes, be authentic with other people, own it when something hurts. We don’t hold them responsible for our feeling – it’s still within us. That doesn’t mean it’s okay when somebody does something that hurts you. Of course we tell them, and then we process our own feelings. They can’t do that for us, so it’s back to us, feeling that feeling.

Getting curious about it, giving it some space.

Okay, now we’ve given it space, so what do we do next?

Being curious

Second piece is to ask it why it’s here.

What is it really trying to teach us? Any of these feelings that we’d sometimes rather avoid comes with a lesson for us. Maybe it’s a lesson that we didn’t communicate our boundaries clearly enough, if we feel taken advantage of for example.

Or the same could be for anger: I didn’t communicate clearly enough in advance what I was expecting, and then it didn’t turn out the way I wanted it. Sometimes anger is also a mask for sadness. Tune into whatever lies underneath the emotion that you’re working through, right now, that you’re feeling through. And ask it what it came to teach you.

Integrating it

The third piece is integrating that lesson. Maybe you discover an underlying belief that doesn’t serve you any longer. Maybe the anger was covering some sadness, and maybe the sadness says that you’re invisible, or the sadness says that you’re not cared for enough. And then you can ask yourself whether that is really true.

Maybe you can become curious about where it came from. Maybe it goes back to old experiences in a previous relationship, or from your childhood, where you didn’t feel seen enough, or whatever it may be for your case.

When I feel sad, I’ve started to become really curious about it. Honor the feeling, feel it, become curious about it, and then check what underlying beliefs there may be. If I’m getting caught up in an old story that doesn’t serve me any longer, is there an outdated underlying belief, and if that is the case: Can I find a belief that’s just a tad more believable that I can replace this one with?

Say, maybe I replace the not feeling seen by “I am seen by the few people that truly matter”, or by “I see and value myself”?

It’s really important to tell that part of ourselves, that shadow, part “you belong, too”.

Whether it’s our angry self that is trying to protect us, whether it’s a scared inner child, whether it’s a jealous passionate lover – whatever that perceived shadow aspect is, it is serving a purpose. So instead of condemning it, can we listen to its lesson? 

That doesn’t mean we let it run its course. It just means we become curious. What did you come from? Why are you here? What are you teaching me?

And then love it back into peace, integrate it into your whole being, accept it lovingly into your soul. 

Say “I understand, I know, thank you, I hear you, I feel you, I see you, you belong too, welcome home.” 

I am hosting a live event on this topic on Sunday on Insight Timer.

I hope this serves you. So much love to you, and have a beautiful week.