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5 Steps of Shadow Work for Spiritual Alignment


The Shadow is our ultimate spiritual blind spot. It is everything about ourselves that we repress, ignore, or deny, for the sake of remaining comfortable. However…   

Pretending something isn’t there doesn’t make it disappear. 

In fact, by repressing the things we don’t want to deal with, we only give them more power to consume our minds and dictate our decisions. 

The solution is not to fight your Shadow, but to work with it

Shadow Work is how we come to terms with the uncomfortable truths buried within us, and achieve harmony between our conscious and unconscious minds.

Let’s begin with our 5 Steps of Shadow Work for Spiritual Alignment:  


1. Identify

Our Shadows speak to us from the depths of our unconscious, typically in the form of expressions that (at first) feel unfamiliar, unwelcome, and disruptive. This tends to occur in situations that hit unrecognized sore spots… where buried trauma, desires, or emotions have the chance to be acknowledged. If our immediate impulse is to deny these expressions, that is our first indication that this is the repressed self attempting to surface. Only by identifying our Shadow can we begin to work with it. 


2. Listen 

Once we recognize our Shadow, we must be willing to hear it — this means venturing into the unknown and surrendering our desire for comfort and control. Do your best to remember that by exploring the unexplored, we only grow more aware, and thus more powerful. The Shadow is not always entirely transparent, so we must be willing to take initiative and ask difficult questions: “What are you telling me?”, “Why is that so?”, and “How do I accept this?” are examples of inquiries that lead to powerful insight. 


3. Embrace 

If we’re going to ask questions, we must be willing to consider the answers. The key to self-reflection is keeping an open mind to all possibilities — while we should not run from certain realizations, we must also be wary of accepting any one thing as absolute, unquestionable truth. Our mental and emotional states determine the nature of our insights. In order to trust a particular insight, we must bring ourselves to a calm, honest place of reflection, where we feel completely free to contemplate and discern with an open, receptive mind. 

With that being said, if you do find yourself struggling to accept something your intuition knows is true, remember that there is no such thing as a dangerous feeling. We tend to think of the Shadow as a spiritual storage closet in the basement of our psyches, filled to the brim with secrets and skeletons. The key to acceptance is realizing that the things we repress are not skeletons, nor did they ever have to be secrets. When we embrace the sacred balance of light and dark that resides in us all, it becomes much easier for us to accept the uncomfortable truths we had been repressing for so long. There is no reason to be afraid, let alone ashamed, of who we are. 


4. Record 

One of the most common mistakes in the process of spiritual development is the assumption that we will remember every insight in its fullest form. Concepts are permanent, but their moments of realization fade — this is why we encourage you to record your wisdom in a place where it can be revisited and re-experienced. While your Daily Manifestation Journal is a guided experience to connect with the Universe in the morning and evening, the Cosmic Lined Journals by Dear UNIVERSE are a great place to record your thoughts throughout the day. By preserving our insights, we can better maintain the progress they helped us achieve. 


5. Integrate 

The final and most crucial step of Shadow Work, integration is when we break down the spiritual dividers separating the Shadow from the conscious mind. It is repression and separation that give the Shadow its power to govern our minds and dictate our experiences. By replacing repression with acceptance, and then separation with integration, we regain rightful control of our consciousness. We are able to achieve harmony with our spirit, because we are aware and accepting of its energetic duality. The Shadow is no longer something to fear, rather something to utilize for growth, healing, and creativity. 

Remember, the Shadow is a crucial part of the human spirit, and it’s no surprise how often we repress it. Our world teaches us that truth is a threat, denial is a solution, and shame is a virtue. We are taught to run from the realities within and fear the total discovery of who we are.  However, the real truth is that…

It is up to us to work with our Shadows, by choosing love over fear, so that we can always remember our power.

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About the author


The Dear Universe Team is a dedicated collective of writers and spiritual seekers passionate about manifestation, the law of attraction, and the depths of spirituality.

We create inspiring products and content to guide you on your journey of self-discovery, empowering you to co-create your reality with the Universe.

Join us today in exploring the infinite possibilities of the Universe and unlocking the magic within you.

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