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January 2023

Shadow Work: Claim Your Freedom of Expression


Shadow work comes from the concept of the shadow self, which originates in Jungian psychology.

According to Jung, a personality consists of the following:
a) the persona, which is the personality that people reveal to the public, and
b) the shadow self, which a person does not like to reveal.

One way to understand the shadow self is to think about the concept of the psyche, which includes both the conscious mind and the unconscious mind:
The conscious mind is the part of us that is aware and in control of our thoughts, feelings, and actions. It is the part of us that makes decisions and choices.
The unconscious mind, on the other hand, is the part of us that is not immediately available to our conscious awareness. It is the part of us that stores our memories, our emotions, and our unconscious thoughts and beliefs. This usually operates outside of awareness unless we have an insight or revelation.

The unconscious mind is often referred to as the “shadow,” because it is made up of the parts of ourselves that we have pushed into the shadows. This may be either because we are unaware of them or because we are avoiding dealing with them. These parts of ourselves can include our fears, our insecurities, our anger, our shame, and our repressed desires. However, they often also incorporate more positive qualities, such as our creativity, our compassion, and our sense of humor.

The collective unconscious also influences this shadow. The collective unconscious is a Jungian idea that refers to the collective memories and impulses of society as a whole. This means that the shadow self also includes racism, prejudice, and other systemic mindsets and responses.

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Three Steps to Working With Your Shadow


Shadow work is the process of exploring and understanding the unconscious parts of ourselves that we typically keep hidden or repressed. It involves bringing these unconscious thoughts and feelings to the surface and learning how to integrate them into our conscious awareness. Shadow work can be a powerful tool for personal growth and transformation, as it helps us become more self-aware and better understand and manage our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.

The concept of the shadow was first introduced by Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung, who believed that the shadow represents the unconscious aspects of ourselves that we tend to reject or disown. These may include aspects of our personality that we deem as negative or undesirable, such as anger, jealousy, or fear. By bringing these unconscious parts of ourselves into the light, we can gain a better understanding of how they influence our behavior and learn to integrate them into our conscious awareness. This means that they no longer are experienced as difficult to handle and give us access to a full richness of experience as well as the full power of these elements of our nature.

With trained support or through individual inquiry you can approach shadow work through the steps of identification, exploration, and integration.

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