Shadow Work - Integrative Coaching | Fiercely Fresh Life


What is Shadow work and what can it do for you?

Did you know that we are whole beings? Yep! We are everything. Even those parts we don’t like.

The parts we don’t like, the parts we are not {“not me, I’d never do that!”} are our shadows.

When we were kids we learned that certain personality traits, impulses, emotions, and behaviors weren’t really approved of or accepted by those around us. We probably got negative feedback from our family, friends, and/or society. This negative feedback brought on anxiety so we pushed these “negative” characteristics deep into our unconscious. Over the course of our development these repressed characteristics formed the shadow – our “dark” sides.

Because they are “dark” and unacceptable, we deny them. Well, what happens to a beach ball when you try to keep it under water? That sucker comes back up and smacks you right in the face. Our shadows do the same thing.


Why Shadow work?


Wouldn’t it be nice to be free to be who you really are?

Since our shadows are part of us shouldn’t we learn how to use them so they don’t use us?

Think about that for a minute. What if someone is pushing your buttons, sending you over the top, about ready to lose your shit. If you had embraced the “bitchy” part of you (like I did), you’d be able to be more assertive in letting them know they have crossed your boundary. You’d be able to use Bitchy Betty (that’s what I call mine) to stand up for yourself.

The thing is, just because you embrace the dark parts doesn’t mean you’re going to go off and become a totally different person. You are still you, just with a little more oomph, and little more complete.


What Shadow work did for me


When I began shadow work began to see how I had created many of the “tragedies” in my life. I had an “Idiot” shadow that constantly drove my every decision. I was a straight A student in school earning Honor Roll throughout elementary, junior and senior high, and the Dean’s list in college. I gave up so many things to get those that I wasn’t really living my life for me, I was living it for everyone else.

Then I got a job as a paramedic. I loved working in the back of an ambulance with patients. I was a good paramedic too. Until I wasn’t and I was deemed an imminent threat to public health and safety. No, I never harmed anyone, but I did make some poor choices that lead to me not taking responsibility and ultimately losing my job. That beach ball hurt, bad! I was never able to admit when I was wrong because I didn’t want to look like an idiot.

Now that I have embraced that which I am not {I’m not an idiot}, I can confidently tell someone I don’t know, and that’s ok. I don’t have all the answers, except my very own of course. That’s ok too. The coolest part about embracing a shadow is that I am now living my Fiercely Fresh Life, the one I was meant to live all along.


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