Our shadows show us where and how to love ourselves.
Please discuss. How does this play out in life?
I’ll start us out. We all have shadow parts of ourselves, unhealed bits that perpetuate outdated behaviors and coping skills which no longer serve our best interests. Our shadow sides often surface at inconvenient times in less than desirable ways. They may leave us wondering why the heck we just said or did something.
We may not be consciously aware of these aspects of ourselves. They can seem to crop up out of nowhere in often self-sabotaging behavior. Our hidden shadow agendas can explain why we sometimes do things we believe are atypical for us.
There usually is a trigger for shadow behavior. Something happening now may echo something difficult that occurred in the past. Strong emotions are evoked and we respond in a manner in keeping with the versions of ourselves from that past event. We may not even consciously remember the old wounds. We simply exhibit a knee-jerk reaction in the present we may be at a loss to explain.
Today’s message reminds me that unlike the proverbial groundhog, I need not be afraid of my shadow. Identifying and dealing with my own unhealed wounds can teach me how to love myself more completely.
If I have an inexplicably strong or inappropriate reaction to a present-day situation, I will want to explore internally to find the emotional resonance. When I’ve identified that previous what and when, I can forgive and reassure the version of me from that time, offering acceptance and understanding.
I also can ask myself what I need to do to heal that experience and honor the answer I receive, however improbable it might initially seem. Forgiving and accepting myself in the present as well, I can bestow love on myself in all times and express gratitude for the opportunity to heal. Self-love is the key ingredient for me in effective personal changes.
How about you? What recent circumstances have provided you with an opportunity to love yourself more?