At times, someone who is on a healing journey is told that in order to heal, they have to eliminate their “shadows” and have and project “only love and light.”

This is not the case.

The parts of you that are sometimes labeled “shadows” are, often, the parts that have been the most damaged by your experiences. Seeking to eliminate or deny those aspects doesn’t move you toward healing; it simply furthers the rejection and pain those aspects already feel. The more you ignore those aspects, the stronger and more impactful they become, because you aren’t learning to work with them or manage their impact. Darkness spreads when it isn’t acknowledged.

In order to progress in healing, it’s essential to learn balance. This includes balance among the aspects of yourself. You want to avoid letting your shadows run the show, but you also want to avoid suppressing and denying them to be “only light.” Darkness and light, your shadows and your conscious self, must exist in balance in order for wholeness and healing to exist.

As you progress on your healing journey, rather than burying or trying to get rid of your shadows, learn to work with them. Show them the love and acceptance they’ve been denied for so long. Rejecting aspects of yourself that have been harmed by rejection isn’t going to make them go away, and it definitely won’t bring you closer to healing. Those aspects need to feel that they are accepted.

As part of the journey, you can learn to work with the shadows rather than against them. You can learn to acknowledge and accept them without letting them take over and run things. Much as a parent works with a toddler to teach the toddler what is and isn’t acceptable, you as the human on a healing journey can work with your inner darkness to teach it what is and isn’t okay and to learn different ways of operating in the world.

In the Universe, everything exists–or needs to exist–in balance. Without the darkness of night, the light of day would be meaningless. Humans, too, need to exist in balance. Too much “love and light” is no more beneficial than too much darkness and pain. The healing journey includes learning that balance.

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