The Hidden Gifts of the Shadow | Building Relationship Skills
Whether you're considering ending the relationship you're now in, have recently ended one or about to begin a new romantic adventure, this blog entry might. Debbie Ford explains how the shadow affects your relationship with food and how you view your physical body. For simplicity's sake, let's call the partner in both relationships Susan, her "real" partner Gary, and her "shadow" partner Philip. Furthermore.
When we suffer consciously it enables us to respond with compassion and empathy towards ourselves and others. It is important not suppress or avoid negative emotions. In order to do that we need to tune into our body.
Being a bodyworker and receiving massage on a regular basis myself, as well as having a consistent Yoga and Qi Gong practice has shown me many times the importance of the body-mind connection, how our traumas and childhood wounds are stored in our bodies.
Our muscles, tissue, organs and bones are carriers of energy and memory, all of which is interrelated and connected.
Shadow Relationship | ReDesign Your Love Life
The body is a holistic organism where nothing is isolated. Everything affects us physically and energetically on some level. Be it grief, a broken relationship, emotional pain, everyday stress, childhood issues, injuries and accidents, past life trauma, etc…. Psychotherapeutic Work Throughout my life I have worked through many issues with the help of these body-mind techniques and other self-help modalities, but sometimes more is needed.
A few years ago, I went through a difficult break-up with my partner. I realized I had hit a wall and dead-end. My relationship with my partner was disintegrating as our individual childhood wounds were starring each other in the face crying for recognition. Too many triggers and mechanical reactions, not enough conscience and mindfulness. We decided to see a psychotherapist as a couple and individual sessions trained in Gestalt Therapy, Jungian Psychology Shadow WorkSomatic Release Therapy and various other body-mind techniques.
Going to see a therapist was the best thing I could have done. Her presence of radiant empathy, but with clear energetic boundaries, was very powerful, giving me the space and safety to process without being judged. Many times during these sessions I started crying out of nowhere as my therapist guided me through my body.
Even embedded energy from past lives got released! In other words, intellectualizing things rather than embodying them. Especially nowadays with all the pop-psychology and new age material, we can easily buffer up issues and avoid deeper psychotherapeutic work, fooling ourselves all along. We need to accept that we have or are using it to avoid our psychological issues and to feel better about ourselves. We must view this with genuine compassion and understanding, not judgment or denial.
We must be aware of our capacity for spiritual bypassing. We need to stop impaling ourselves on various spiritual shoulds and practices and preoccupations of being nice, positive, and spiritual.
Spiritual Bypassing, Relationships and The Shadow | Wake Up World
We need to recognize and act on addressing our darker or less spiritual emotions, impulses and intentions and stop denying them as part of who we are. We must be aware of our need to be someone special, spiritual, advanced, and stop dividing everything positive and negative, higher and lower, spiritual and non-spiritual.
We want to reach a state of immunity to suffering. As some of us know, psychology has also become much distorted, however at the same time, there are many new concepts and practices that have evolved, combining spiritual and psychological work with body-mind techniques in very efficient and practical ways. Especially in this day and age where life has become more complex and uncertain as the world is changing faster and faster, it is important that we dive deep into our unconscious to heal what needs to be healed.
It is part of being the change you want to see in the worldconfronting the shadow within and without. The nature of your shadow is a function of the nature of your ego.
It is the backside of your light side. In the myths, the shadow is represented as the monster that has to be overcome, the dragon. It is the dark thing that comes up from the abyss and confronts you the minute you begin moving down into the unconscious. When issues arise in a relationship — as they always do at a certain point — our individual shadows come out and we end up projecting our shadow onto the other, hurting each other unconsciously.
But there is a chance here to heal deep-rooted childhood wounds that are coming to surface again, each partner playing out the parent or both we were wounded by as we all have been in various degrees because no parents are perfectbecause of their own wounds.
If we can recognize this and take our projections back, understanding that there is no one to blame, neither the partner nor the parents, but only lessons, the relationship can be transformed to a higher level.
Sometimes a third person, a mediator or therapist is needed. Then the only way is to separate otherwise we will follow a downward spiral. This is not being selfish, but mature. Being the target of shadow projection in an intimate relationship or friendships is the hardest, especially when you are doing your best to own your own projections, and acknowledge the hurt you have caused due to your own unconscious behaviors.
It hurts because we love the other person. But even in this pain, I know that the one who hurts me is in even more pain and it is not about me, so I meet it with compassion and empathy but with clear boundaries as well.
The Hidden Gifts of the Shadow
The shadow refers to those aspects that we tend to deny or disown, to both ourselves as well as others, aspects that are deemed unattractive or even destructive by the culture in which we live. Since being seen by others as possessing socially unacceptable traits diminishes us in the eyes of others, it is natural to wish to conceal what we deem to be any negative qualities that we possess.
Unfortunately, doing so has serious and potentially damaging consequences, many of which show up in our relationships with others as well as with ourselves. In focusing on the concealment of what we deem to be unattractive aspects of ourselves we create a split between our true self and our public or false self. This split results in us feeling incomplete, insufficient, and inauthentic. Disowning our undesired parts also results in feelings of guilt, shame, and inferiority.
In fact, they do. And the members of all groups share common ideas in regard to the qualities, behaviors, and values that have been identify as positive and negative. Consequently living an authentic life, being genuine and true to yourself and simultaneously honoring and conforming to the values of the groups with which you are identified proves to be far more difficult than most of us believe it should be.
One of the things people in great relationships have in common is that they have integrated those aspects of themselves that had been relegated to the shadow into their lives in a way that allows them to live with greater authenticity, integrity, and emotional honesty. Unless our relationships embody these qualities, they will not fulfill the deeper needs and longings that we seek to experience in true partnership. There are many examples of people who have done so and people who are currently doing so.
These folks do, however, share a common intention that unites them in a community in which the highest value is integrity. This community is not defined by adherence to commonly held beliefs but is characterized by an acknowledgment of an inner drive to become a more loving human being who is unencumbered by the burden of concerns about rejection, failure, or other fears that are shared by most of the population.