Strolling down the avenue,
Me and my shadow,
Not a soul to tell our troubles to . . .
And when it’s twelve o’clock,
We climb the stair,
We never knock,
For nobody’s there . . .
Just me and my shadow,
All alone and feelin’ blue . . ."
Written in 1927, this popular song has been recorded by everyone from Al Jolson to Robbie Williams. Why is that? And what does it actually mean?
Debbie Ford, the bestselling author of self-help book "The Dark Side of the Light Chasers" built a career around helping people get to know their shadow self, the dark hidden recesses of the subconscious mind that are often built on fear, pain, and trauma. She looked at the shadows of the human experience, using her own life as the example. She battled drug addiction, abuse, divorce and a myriad of other painful episodes and came out of it with the fire and gumption to help others see where their own shadow-self might be causing conflict in their own life.
As a healer, I often see how much the unexplored shadow side of my clients' lives affect them in present time. But it's very hard to talk about this with them unless their very open and very committed to healing.
It's no coincidence then that as news came out yesterday, 2/18/13, that Debbie Ford had passed away after a long struggle with cancer, that I finally started to see where my own shadow self was negatively impacting me taking my own steps forward, and my own healing.
As you know, I own a record company, Gearhead Records, and have worked in the music industry for over 25 years. It's an ugly industry based on competition, fear, abuse, striving, and one-up-man-ship. And I am willing to admit, I found myself matching that energy with my company, as much as I consciously worked to be separate from it.
But time after time, I found myself in situations where people I trusted and bands I worked with stabbed me in the back, abused and used me, and in general took advantage of me to get ahead. I was often wracked with jealousy and competition as other labels took the bands I had worked so hard to break and capitalized on their success, while I sat in the background, the shadows, hurt, and squashed down, feeling neglected and walked on as these individuals stopped at nothing to make their own careers and businesses successful.
You'd think being in the field of healing and clairvoyant work that I'd be able to recognize immediately in myself where my unhealed shadow-self was popping up over and over again, but it's very hard to look at one's self and get the lessons, even as a teacher of this type of work!
I finally reached out to a friend, who is also a healer, for help. Why was I continuing to create episodes in my life where jealousy and competition and abuse kept smacking me in the face? With her help, I was able to finally look at my unhealed shadow-self, and boy was I surprised at what was there!
We attract into our lives experiences that help us heal and grow. And when you have a lesson you need to learn, it will keep entering your life until you get it. Always. And it gets louder and stronger until you're ready to pay attention to it. This is one of the Universal Laws of Attraction.
As I look back over the years at the myriad of abusive lovers, friends, jobs, bosses, and experiences I've been through, there is a common thread there, all going back to childhood yet again.
The feeling of unworthiness permeates every single one of those experiences. The people who kept abusing me were literally being called into my life to help me look at that long-buried self-belief: I AM NOT WORTHY. I created all those situations so I could look at that unconscious belief I've held about myself since childhood.
Why has it taken me so long to finally shed light on this shadow-side of myself? All I can say is that until now, I just wasn't ready to own it for myself, to heal it, and to release it. Why I'm ready now, I can't tell you. I just know I am.
As my friend communicated to me this information that my higher self already knew, I started crying, and I could feel this ball of pain, hurt and sickness in my stomach start to release. She recommended that to further release it I run RAGE through my body.
Anger is a tremendously healing emotion. It's one we're taught as children to stuff down though, as it can be firey and out of control, and dangerous. It can really freak people out.
The last episode of abuse and betrayal in my life, where a band I had loved and nurtured literally turned their back on me and took all my hard work and just gave it to a former friend who started his own record label, was still sitting, unspoken, in my gut. I had chosen to take the high road, and to wish them luck and fortune and not speak of the anger and jealously I felt, and those unspoken emotions were literally eating away at my inside, in my 3rd chakra, the center of power.
By embracing the anger I feel around this horrible action by people I loved I can heal myself. It's ok to give expression to anger and rage. It helps one re-set one's boundaries and re-own one's power. And that's ok!! That's good!!
Where is there unexpressed anger in your life? Give yourself a gift today, and let it out. Find a place where you can be alone, like your bedroom. Close all the doors, and all the windows, and if there's others in your house, let them know you're going to SAFELY release the rage and pain that have built up in your gut. Maybe put the cat or dog outside so they don't freak out. Grab a couple of pillows and smoosh them to your face. And then, start yelling and screaming. Find that rage inside, that anger, and tap into it. Think about all the things your upset and hurt about, or jealous of, and start screaming it out!! Express it!! Release it!! Release it Consciously!! You may start crying, or laughing as you access these deep hidden shadow emotions; that's ok! However it comes out, let it! Do not censor or edit yourself, just keep screaming or shouting into those pillows until it dissipates. Maybe you need to physically bang those pillows around (make sure they're not feather pillows, or they may burst LOL!) do it!! Let it come out in this very safe way and notice how good it feels.....
As you release you are using the burning fire of anger and rage to heal yourself, to release your shadow emotions.... and trust me, you will feel better.
As I give myself the gift of saying hello to my shadow-self, I can move forward more easily and shine my light more clearly, because there is nothing hidden. Give yourself this gift. You will be amazed at the lessons your shadow-self has waiting for you!