relationships

How to meet your shadow

Worth noting: everyone has a shadow. Even this itty bitty bug. It's that part of you that you'd rather not see. Since you rather not see it for yourself, you almost always see it in others. You're quick to note who is selfish, unkind, lazy, obnoxious, spoiled, mean, too loose, too tight, too this, too that. There are some folks who say that every little thing someone else does that annoys you is your shadow showing through, but I am not so quick to jump to that extreme. That would mean the world is full of assholes. It's not. 

I digress. 

Sometimes your shadow is trailing behind you, other times in front. Depending upon the hour it might be East or slightly West. Let it be. 

When you notice your shadow under foot, it's time to take note. With the sun's spotlight upon you just look at the size and shape of the shadow. It's not that big, is it? In fact, it's a bit smaller than your body size.  This means if your shadow is:

  • three parts fear and one part anxiety: you are bigger than that. 
  • four parts depression: you are bigger than that. 
  • one part selfish, one part untruthful, one part obnoxious and one part lazy: you are bigger than that. 
  • two parts nasty and one part unloving: you are bigger than that. 

You get the point. 

This shadow that you're looking at is your polar opposite. You are light, it is dark. In the world of woo you can't be one and not the other. In fact, I might argue it's your shadow that makes you so beautiful. Darkness sheds the most light. 

Consider what is in your shadow? What are these things you can't stand to see? Do you understand the importance of love from the experience of having once been unloving? I do. Do you understand the power of courage from having been fearful? I do. Do you understand the need to be truthful from having lied? Me, too. 

My list is longer than this lifetime. And yours? 

This is the gift of being human — the experience of moving in and out of darkness and light so that you can decide how you want to step forward. 

Knowing that your light is brighter than your shadow is key. Seeing it in others allows you to acknowledge what hasn't felt right for you. Recognizing the behaviors that you're no longer willing to tolerate of yourself helps create a boundary of what you no longer need to accept from others, too. 

When you meet your own shadow underfoot it will radiantly buoy you through this life. It's just a reminder that, given the opportunity, you can always choose to light the way. 

The tipping point

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There's a point in every relationship where the decision to proceed is made.

Good, strong, solid relationships have a way of camouflaging this decision because proceeding is pleasant and easy. In these relationships onward is the only way. 

Weak relationships are not afforded the luxury of such no-brainers. Alarms go off. Thinking, pondering, obsessing and weighing options against non-options ensues. 

Do you know why that is? It's because neither party wants to let go of what needs to be let go which just so happens to be the other person(s). There's a dream or a wish or a belief tied to that relationship that isn't real or attainable or, quite frankly, worth it.

There's also a fear resting in the perceived void. A fear so big it's almost impossible to imagine the happiness, relief and sheer joy that can occupy the space where all that unpleasant fuckery resides.

Why do that? Why hang onto something that's not good instead of creating the space for (if nothing else) peace?

You can't have something bad without the promise of something better. It's impossible. 

So let go and make way.