“Taking this journey into the past may feel slightly daunting at first. But the fact is this journey is one of the most rewarding trips we can take. It’s intriguing to uncover our shadow, to see how it has taken root, and to catch ourselves before we say something we don’t really mean or do something that we will regret.
Our shadows are there for us, waiting to offer invaluable insights about ourselves. We can never manage or defeat our self-sabotaging behaviors without embracing the shadows that are driving them. There is no pattern of behavior that can’t be broken or changed if we are willing to expose its roots and the emotional upset that caused us to reject the shadow aspect in the first place.
When we can compassionately embrace the part of us that has set this behavior in place, we will take back the power over our own actions and break the automatic responses of our unwanted patterns. This process often creates a conundrum because, as human beings, we are designed to want to feel safe, and more often than not, repeating the same old behaviors is what gives us a false sense of safety.
It somehow feels easier to repeat the past than explore a different outcome. But to break open a repetitive self-sabotaging behavior, we will have to give up this illusion of a safety net for a moment and be willing to feel what’s underneath. And when we find ourselves in the presence of one of our shadow aspects, we will be able to unravel the mystery of our undesirable behavior and cause change to begin.”
Excerpt From: Deepak Chopra, Marianne Williamson & Debbie Ford. “The Shadow Effect.”