Updated: Jan 18
One evening, when I was about 11 or 12 in the age and time of landlines, we had a few crank calls to our house. I remember my dad getting on the phone the second or third time they called and I believe he called them some sort of name - I honestly don't remember the details but I do remember what came next.
I remember my dad hung up the phone, frustrated of course and said that the person on the other end said 'It takes one to know one'.
That phrase, it takes one to know one, stuck in my brain - I was intrigued to know what it meant at 11 or 12 years old and the memory just recently came back to me.
This was my first introduction to shadow work.
If you follow me or have worked with me in any capacity, you know that I delve into the shadow with myself and with my clients.
Shadow work is essential to knowing oneself and it's something that one doesn't do in a program or for a month or 6 months. It's a lifelong journey of looking into our shadow aspects and layers.
My purpose in writing this to you is twofold:
1) The universe is ALWAYS giving us signs and clues to what we need
2) Being brave and doing REAL shadow work is essential to our growth, authenticity and the releasing of karma in this lifetime.
Let's dig into #1. The clearer I get in my mission in this lifetime - the more memories are coming up of past times when my mission was VERY CLEAR - my mind and conditioning were in the way. I was trying to make it harder, and more complex that it was and is.
A crank caller said the words 'It takes one to know one' - and out of everything in that day or even week that is what resonates and what I remember.
I remember in 2015 listening to a video and hearing the term 'shadow work' and it resonating deep in my soul. I knew that there was something to this....a truth that was living within me and laying dormant. This part of myself activated that day because I started to embrace the energy of curiosity within myself - and I started asking myself the right questions at just the right time that expanded the field of possibility within me and allowed me to look at the truth within myself.
On to #2. Shadow work....what is the shadow? To put simply, it's the unconscious parts of ourselves that we have learned to push down and reject. Our shadow aspects are formed in childhood when we are told that we are too loud, lazy, disrespectful, too emotional, etc. When we are children between the ages of 0-7 and up to even 12 to 14 we make sense of the world around us by taking in everything that is said and done to us as truth and we internalize that and it becomes part of our shadow. This is how limiting beliefs are formed...and our conscious mind is not aware until we bring the unconscious to the conscious to examine.
Shame is at the root of our shadow self. If you have shame running in your life in any way - whether you shame yourself or others - you are operating out of your shadow self.
Anytime that you project, you are operating from your shadow. The parts of ourselves that we have disregarded and shamed we see in others - and we hate that part of ourselves so much that when we see it mirrored back to us we react, and sometimes in a pretty extreme way. We also do this when we see something that we admire in another but haven't accepted that part about ourselves. It's deeper than this, but for the purpose of this writing...it will suffice.
This is one of the first things that I take my clients through.....they get to discover and see themselves in a whole new way. They get to reclaim those pieces of themselves that they thought were 'bad' and 'unlovable'. They get to go
Shadow work is essential if we desire to have fulfilling and supportive relationships with ourselves and others, if we struggle with addictions, anger, depression, self-sabotage, and the list goes one.
In a nut shell....if we want to live a more fulfilled and purposeful life....it's ESSENTIAL to become aware of our shadow parts of ourselves and integrate them back into ourselves.
REAL shadow work is generational....one must realize when they embark on this journey that they are being called to it....because it is that person in this lifetime or possibly many lifetimes that has accepted the call to clear karma from ancestral lines. Nobody in their 'right mind' would consciously say YES - let's go to hell and play in that playground to see what happens! I kid...but not really - I cannot stress how important this work is....not just in this lifetime but for many, many lifetimes.
To know thyself one MUST delve into the unconscious realm of the shadow.
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Love - Erin
P.S. The level of fulfillment that you experience in your life is determined by the company you keep and the quality of questions you ask yourself....Get your FREE GUIDE that will help you improve your level of fulfillment and joy!