Summer of Shadows

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I have found that my own shadows are not only what hinder me in my life, but the things that drive me to be better.  By honoring the challenges I have before me, I can do many things.I have found that my own shadows are not only what hinder me in my life, but the things that drive me to be better.  By honoring the challenges I have before me, I can do many things.

  1. (hopefully) work towards getting over behaviors that don’t help me.
  2. Learn more about me, and understand how my history has built me to who I am today ~ no matter how I judge each quality.
  3. They allow me to remember that we are all facing challenges that we may not yet be aware of.
  4. The shadows that I struggle with every day, remind me to hold compassion for those around me.

These are all remarkably powerful things.  

What do I mean when I saw shadow? I see a shadow as any connection to an idea, item, person, or object that causes you to act in a way or make decisions that do not allow you to be your best self, or work in your best interest.

For instance: One of the shadows I am working with right now is Money. I grew up below the poverty line in Traverse City, MI.  We are a town with a pretty solid divide between the haves’ and have nots. My entire adult life I had been trying to buy what I want, when I wanted it because when I was poor, I couldn’t buy things… So, I found that I was buying things, that I couldn’t afford, so I wouldn’t feel poor, but those same actions were causing for it to be difficult to pay my bills, as if I were poor.

A side shot of this I need to address in my work, is the clear judgement I have in my own mind about being poor.  Let me be clear, I do not feel that there is anything wrong with being poor, nor do I feel that it says anything about you as a person ~ as most people do not choose poverty.  The negative connotations I hold with being poor are because the time in my life where I was fighting so hard to just to get by, was of the worst times in my life.  I associate poor with unhappy, and unable.

So to sum that up: Because I associate being poor with being unhappy and unable, I do not wish to feel poor. Because of this, I made choices to purchase things I could not afford.  Having purchased things I could not afford, made it harder to pay my bills, which made me actually poor.

As you can see, this ‘shadow’ around money, has been causing a me to make decisions that were not working in my best interest.

Many of us have issues around money, so this may be a great example, or a horrible example.  You may have a huge issue with money, and look above and be like, I have no problem with “keeping up with the Jones’”.  The thing is, this is an aspect of my Money Shadow that is easy to talk about and many people will understand.  The more you look at one of your shadows, and finding its source, and trying to grow past it, the more you will see that the shadow runs deep and has many facets.

I tell you all of this because I have been working with so many people as of late who are so burdened by the shadows they carry, that moving forward on a day to day basis is feeling impossible.  Whether you are exhausted, peopled out, too damn broke, overdone, pent up, oppressed, or whatever.  These are ALL real and true issues, do not think I am minimizing your struggles.  But we are our own worst enemies, and frequently, the way we think, feel, or experience these issues, make them a larger problem than they are.  Your feeling, thoughts, and experiences are COMPLETELY VALID.  It can still be smaller than it seems.

You are the person who can deal with your shadows.  If you would like, I can help you to see them.  Know that I can hear you. I can hear your work, and your pain.  And because I have been working so hard on my own shadows, I will not judge you or yours.

We all need help sometimes, don’t hesitate to reach out.

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