Absolutely everything in our life is a projection from within us of what we believe and perceive life to be. In the last few years, since discovering shadow work, I have had a chance to apply the process to different troubling situations with amazing results.

For those who haven’t been exposed to Shadow Work, in simple terms, the shadow effect occurs when we suppress our feelings or aspects of our true self. We may have been fed ideas while growing up, and even much later, such as: don’t be too smart, don’t make too much of those marks and awards; being assertive isn’t feminine, don’t be stupid, don’t be a cry baby, don’t think so highly of yourself … and so on.

A child only knows that it deeply needs the love and approval of a parent and a fear of being rejected can lead to a suppression of emotions, and our own best qualities. Later, we attract mirrors of the qualities we have rejected in a spouse, friend, boss or acquaintance that is too arrogant, assertive, wimpy, and egotistical and so on and it infuriates us. We find ourselves reacting either in our minds or out loud. The more the reaction to a quality in a person, the more we can be sure that emotion or quality has been pushed far, far down in our consciousness.

Recently, I was obsessing over a situation that had repeated itself often in my life, of meeting and having relationships with unavailable people, especially men. It had been over 10 years since my last intimate relationship, until I finally made a loud proclamation to the universe, asking to have my heart opened and to access feelings that I had shut down. Soon after, a situation occurred, so painful that it broke my heart wide open. A person near and so very dear to me told me I was too needy and it felt that they might cut off our relationship. It brought me to my knees emotionally.

After applying the shadow perspective, I saw how when I was growing up, my father had been cold and very harsh, especially if one appeared needy. He constantly told me to be strong. Don’t be a wimp. Go out there and kick butt. This had caused me to adopt a belief that “being needy is a weakness”.

As I began to see the person who had told me I was needy as a mirror of a lost or rejected aspect of myself, it became obvious that they were reflecting back my belief “wanting to be loved is needy and unattractive”. I saw that I had truly expressed my heartfelt love and affection for the person and that my feelings weren’t needy, but perfectly in accord with who this person was to me. A great split within me healed with this new awareness. Many experiences had led to that moment in which I was strong enough to contain the truth of those realizations. Soon after, a string of healing dreams and occurrences began a chain reaction leading to the closure of a life-long cycle of pain.

I am now ready to have relationships with “whole” people who mirror back to me the divine love I am.

Author's Bio: 

Darlene Montgomery is an Life Empowerment Coach, Dream Guide, Licensed Brain Gym Coach, Emotion Code Coach and ECKANKAR Cleric. She is the creator of the series Conscious Women Conscious Lives: Transformational Stories of Healing Body Mind and Soul, with five books in series.