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The Shadow Within

There is within every person’s subconscious mind an aspect of themselves referred to as the “shadow” This shadow contains all suppressed and repressed thoughts, feelings and emotions that we are unwilling to face and let go of. The benefit of going through a crisis is that it affords the opportunity to face these shadows. In doing so we come to realise that all humanity is connected and that we share our lot with others and this makes us more humane and whole. All the stuff we think “they” are guilty of is equally within us. When this is brought into conscious awareness, acknowledged and surrendered, it no longer unconsciously runs us. Once the shadow has been exposed and acknowledged it loses its stronghold.

We are then empowered to handle life with an attitude of “so what”.

Life crises hold within them the opportunity to make us more human, more compassionate, more accepting and understanding of self and others and we are able to relent negative views and opinions of ourselves and others.

Successfully handling an emotional crisis leads to greater wisdom resulting in lifetime benefits.

Fear of life is really the fear of emotions. It is therefore not the facts that we fear but the feelings they invoke. Once we have gained mastery over negative emotions, fear diminishes leading to feelings of greater self-confidence. The individual becomes willing to take greater chances due to the realisation that they have, through experiencing the crisis, been equipped to handle the emotional consequences of their choices. Mastery over our negative emotions facilitates the unblocking of new avenues of life experience, avenues that have previously been avoided.

The individual, after having successfully handled the traumatic separation, will never again experience the same negative emotions since they have successfully released and let go of. The person will, therefore, be more creative in future relationships and work harder to make it work.

One of the biggest benefits of going through a life crisis is increased self-awareness.  The situation is normally overwhelming, and we are forced to stop all the distracting mind-games we play and take a good look at our life situation and re-evaluate our beliefs, goals, values and the direction of our lives. It creates the opportunity to let go of our negative emotions. It is an opportunity for a paradigm shift as to our attitude towards life. Life crises confront us with polar opposites. We have to choose whether to hate of forgiving those that did us wrong. We have the choice to decide whether to learn from the experience and grow in the process or resent it and become bitter and despondent. We are faced with the choice whether to overlook the other person as well as our own shortcomings, or whether to mentally and emotionally continue to resent and attack them.

Will we withdraw with even greater fear from a similar situation in the future, or will we transcend the crisis and master it once and for all?

Do we choose discouragement or do we choose hope?

Can we use the experience as an opportunity for personal growth, an opportunity to increase wisdom through learning something from it or do we rather withdraw into our box of fear, resentment and bitterness?

Every emotional experience is an opportunity to either rise or fall. That is the decision that confronts us. We

© Juan Esterhuizen – Connecting the Dots Research Centre

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