💬 “𝐄𝐯𝐞𝐫𝐲𝐨𝐧𝐞 𝐜𝐚𝐫𝐫𝐢𝐞𝐬 𝐚 𝐬𝐡𝐚𝐝𝐨𝐰, 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐥𝐞𝐬𝐬 𝐢𝐭 𝐢𝐬 𝐞𝐦𝐛𝐨𝐝𝐢𝐞𝐝 𝐢𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐢𝐧𝐝𝐢𝐯𝐢𝐝𝐮𝐚𝐥’𝐬 𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐬𝐜𝐢𝐨𝐮𝐬 𝐥𝐢𝐟𝐞, 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐛𝐥𝐚𝐜𝐤𝐞𝐫 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐝𝐞𝐧𝐬𝐞𝐫 𝐢𝐭 𝐢𝐬. 𝐀𝐭 𝐚𝐥𝐥 𝐜𝐨𝐮𝐧𝐭𝐬, 𝐢𝐭 𝐟𝐨𝐫𝐦𝐬 𝐚𝐧 𝐮𝐧𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐬𝐜𝐢𝐨𝐮𝐬 𝐬𝐧𝐚𝐠, 𝐭𝐡𝐰𝐚𝐫𝐭𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐦𝐨𝐬𝐭 𝐰𝐞𝐥𝐥-𝐦𝐞𝐚𝐧𝐭 𝐢𝐧𝐭𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐬.” ~ 𝐂𝐚𝐫𝐥 𝐉𝐮𝐧𝐠 💬
The Shadow is the parts of ourselves we reject, the primal emotions we suppress for the sake of societal approval, the parts we deny out of a personal desire to deny they exist. ❌
You could also think of the Shadow like “the devil on your shoulder”. The Shadow includes the thoughts that come up in your mind you’d never tell anyone else you thought. 👿
Think of an individual who is so kind, so loving, and so quiet. But one day you hear about an incident where they lost their temper, and you think to yourself: “NO! That is NOT the person I know! That is NOT who they are!” 🛑
Or think of the priest who vocally condemns homosexuality in his church but is eventually found to have participated in homosexual acts. 😲
➡️ These are examples of the Shadow at play. ⬅️
𝐖𝐡𝐞𝐧 𝐰𝐞 𝐟𝐚𝐢𝐥 𝐭𝐨 𝐚𝐜𝐤𝐧𝐨𝐰𝐥𝐞𝐝𝐠𝐞 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐢𝐧𝐭𝐞𝐠𝐫𝐚𝐭𝐞 𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐒𝐡𝐚𝐝𝐨𝐰 𝐢𝐧𝐭𝐨 𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐥𝐢𝐟𝐞, 𝐢𝐭 𝐰𝐢𝐥𝐥 𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐞 𝐨𝐮𝐭 𝐢𝐧 𝐝𝐞𝐬𝐭𝐫𝐮𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐯𝐞 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐡𝐚𝐫𝐦𝐟𝐮𝐥 𝐰𝐚𝐲𝐬 𝐭𝐨𝐰𝐚𝐫𝐝𝐬 𝐨𝐮𝐫𝐬𝐞𝐥𝐯𝐞𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐨𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐬. 🔨
𝐖𝐞 𝐰𝐢𝐥𝐥 𝐩𝐫𝐨𝐣𝐞𝐜𝐭 𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐒𝐡𝐚𝐝𝐨𝐰𝐬 𝐨𝐧𝐭𝐨 𝐨𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐩𝐞𝐨𝐩𝐥𝐞 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐩𝐫𝐨𝐜𝐥𝐚𝐢𝐦: “𝐓𝐡𝐞𝐲 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐢𝐦𝐦𝐨𝐫𝐚𝐥!” 𝐰𝐡𝐢𝐥𝐞 𝐝𝐞𝐧𝐲𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐯𝐞𝐫𝐲 𝐢𝐦𝐦𝐨𝐫𝐚𝐥𝐢𝐭𝐲 𝐥𝐚𝐲𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐧 𝐨𝐮𝐫𝐬𝐞𝐥𝐯𝐞𝐬. 🎭
It’s why there’s so many people with emotional issues. It’s why we have many immature adults, ones who’ve never taken the opportunity to be better in touch with themselves. 😔
Instead, many have unfortunately had to settle for cultural expectations of possessing certain personality traits while suppressing others. 😩
A man needs to always be masculine and suppress his femininity (“Boys don’t cry”), while a female needs to always be feminine and suppress her masculinity (“Girls, know your place”). ↕️
𝐈𝐭’𝐬 𝐰𝐡𝐲 𝐰𝐞 𝐬𝐡𝐨𝐮𝐥𝐝 𝐧𝐨𝐭 𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐢𝐬𝐭 𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐒𝐡𝐚𝐝𝐨𝐰. 𝐈𝐧𝐬𝐭𝐞𝐚𝐝, 𝐰𝐞 𝐧𝐞𝐞𝐝 𝐭𝐨 𝐛𝐞𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐞 𝐚𝐰𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐨𝐟 𝐢𝐭 𝐬𝐨 𝐰𝐞 𝐜𝐚𝐧 𝐰𝐨𝐫𝐤 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐢𝐭. 💯
In some circles like self-help and spirituality, the idea of the Shadow can be frowned upon. “Let go of the things which don’t serve you.” “If you focus on it, the more energy you give to it.” 👎
I understand those perspectives, however I take Carl Jung’s perspective: “I’d rather be whole than good.” I’d rather accept every part of me, the good and the bad, the gentle and the aggressive, than suppress it. 👤
🤔 So, how does one integrate their Shadow? 🤔
The first step is acknowledgment of its existence. Whatever your Shadow is will differ from person to person. 🙌
This DOESN’T mean you have to start expressing your Shadow or have to start identifying with it. It’s simply about acknowledging it, you making a personal commitment to being brutally honest of seeing every part of yourself, whether you are “proud” it or not. 💯
📍 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐠𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐥𝐞 𝐦𝐚𝐧 𝐚𝐜𝐤𝐧𝐨𝐰𝐥𝐞𝐝𝐠𝐞𝐬 𝐡𝐢𝐬 𝐜𝐚𝐩𝐚𝐜𝐢𝐭𝐲 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐚𝐠𝐠𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐬𝐢𝐨𝐧.
📍 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐬𝐞𝐧𝐬𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐯𝐞 𝐰𝐨𝐦𝐚𝐧 𝐚𝐜𝐤𝐧𝐨𝐰𝐥𝐞𝐝𝐠𝐞𝐬 𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐜𝐚𝐩𝐚𝐜𝐢𝐭𝐲 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐦𝐚𝐧𝐢𝐩𝐮𝐥𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧.
📍 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐡𝐨𝐦𝐨𝐩𝐡𝐨𝐛𝐢𝐜 𝐩𝐫𝐢𝐞𝐬𝐭 𝐚𝐜𝐤𝐧𝐨𝐰𝐥𝐞𝐝𝐠𝐞𝐬 𝐡𝐢𝐬 𝐜𝐚𝐩𝐚𝐜𝐢𝐭𝐲 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐡𝐨𝐦𝐨𝐬𝐞𝐱𝐮𝐚𝐥 𝐝𝐞𝐬𝐢𝐫𝐞𝐬.
📍 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐃𝐫. 𝐉𝐞𝐤𝐲𝐥𝐥 𝐚𝐜𝐤𝐧𝐨𝐰𝐥𝐞𝐝𝐠𝐞𝐬 𝐡𝐢𝐬 𝐜𝐚𝐩𝐚𝐜𝐢𝐭𝐲 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐌𝐫. 𝐇𝐲𝐝𝐞.
We acknowledge our capacity for evil while simultaneously choosing to be good. 🎭
As written in The Gulag Archipelago 📖: “If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them.
𝐁𝐮𝐭 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐥𝐢𝐧𝐞 𝐝𝐢𝐯𝐢𝐝𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐠𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐞𝐯𝐢𝐥 𝐜𝐮𝐭𝐬 𝐭𝐡𝐫𝐨𝐮𝐠𝐡 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐡𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐭 𝐨𝐟 𝐞𝐯𝐞𝐫𝐲 𝐡𝐮𝐦𝐚𝐧 𝐛𝐞𝐢𝐧𝐠.” 👤
So, with this acknowledgement and acceptance of our Shadows, we can then take action! 😄
𝐑𝐚𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐧 𝐥𝐞𝐭𝐭𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐒𝐡𝐚𝐝𝐨𝐰𝐬 𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐭𝐫𝐨𝐥 𝐮𝐬, 𝐰𝐞 𝐜𝐚𝐧 𝐭𝐚𝐤𝐞 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐫𝐞𝐢𝐧𝐬 𝐨𝐯𝐞𝐫 𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐦! 💪
“𝘐 𝘤𝘰𝘯𝘴𝘪𝘥𝘦𝘳 𝘮𝘺𝘴𝘦𝘭𝘧 𝘢 𝘬𝘪𝘯𝘥, 𝘨𝘦𝘯𝘵𝘭𝘦, 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘤𝘰𝘮𝘱𝘢𝘴𝘴𝘪𝘰𝘯𝘢𝘵𝘦 𝘱𝘦𝘳𝘴𝘰𝘯. 𝘉𝘶𝘵 𝘐 𝘢𝘤𝘬𝘯𝘰𝘸𝘭𝘦𝘥𝘨𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘦’𝘴 𝘢𝘯 𝘢𝘨𝘨𝘳𝘦𝘴𝘴𝘪𝘷𝘦, 𝘢𝘯𝘨𝘳𝘺 𝘱𝘢𝘳𝘵 𝘰𝘧 𝘮𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘴𝘶𝘳𝘧𝘢𝘤𝘦𝘴 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘤𝘰𝘮𝘦𝘴 𝘰𝘶𝘵 𝘸𝘩𝘦𝘯 𝘱𝘦𝘰𝘱𝘭𝘦 𝘵𝘢𝘬𝘦 𝘢𝘥𝘷𝘢𝘯𝘵𝘢𝘨𝘦 𝘰𝘧 𝘮𝘺 𝘬𝘪𝘯𝘥𝘯𝘦𝘴𝘴. 😠
𝘏𝘰𝘸 𝘤𝘢𝘯 𝘐 𝘪𝘯𝘵𝘦𝘨𝘳𝘢𝘵𝘦 𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘴 𝘚𝘩𝘢𝘥𝘰𝘸 𝘱𝘢𝘳𝘵 𝘰𝘧 𝘮𝘦 𝘪𝘯 𝘢 𝘸𝘢𝘺 𝘵𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘸𝘰𝘯’𝘵 𝘣𝘦 𝘥𝘦𝘴𝘵𝘳𝘶𝘤𝘵𝘪𝘷𝘦 𝘵𝘰 𝘰𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘴?” 🤔
What are some ways you could use your Shadow energy of anger and aggression for more constructive means?
⚽️ You could take up a competitive sport.
🏋️ You could use this energy in your workouts.
💨 You could use it to get your work done faster.
🙌 You could use it in situations which legitimately call for you to become more aggressive.
𝐁𝐮𝐭 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐝𝐢𝐟𝐟𝐞𝐫𝐞𝐧𝐜𝐞 𝐧𝐨𝐰 𝐢𝐬 𝐘𝐎𝐔 𝐀𝐑𝐄 𝐈𝐍 𝐂𝐎𝐍𝐓𝐑𝐎𝐋. 𝐘𝐨𝐮 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐮𝐬𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐲𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐒𝐡𝐚𝐝𝐨𝐰 𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐬𝐜𝐢𝐨𝐮𝐬𝐥𝐲 𝐫𝐚𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐧 𝐥𝐞𝐭𝐭𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐲𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐒𝐡𝐚𝐝𝐨𝐰 𝐮𝐬𝐞 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐮𝐧𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐬𝐜𝐢𝐨𝐮𝐬𝐥𝐲! 😄
It’s what I mean when I tell people “don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater”. 👶
Integrating our Shadow can be VERY useful. But we always need to make sure we’re in control and using it for a healthy means. 😊
𝐖𝐢𝐥𝐥 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐩𝐨𝐬𝐬𝐞𝐬𝐬 𝐲𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐒𝐡𝐚𝐝𝐨𝐰, 𝐨𝐫 𝐰𝐢𝐥𝐥 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐨𝐰 𝐢𝐭 𝐭𝐨 𝐩𝐨𝐬𝐬𝐞𝐬𝐬 𝐲𝐨𝐮? 😈
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