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  • Writer's pictureBryan Stafford

Shadow work expanded on further

Updated: 5 days ago

Submitted question covered in this blog:

"What is Shadow Work in more detail?"

Thank you for referencing the previous blog entry and for submitting this question in relation to it.

My friend, Aurora Moon also commented on shadow work in this other previous blog/video interview with her posted at where as mentioned, Shadow work can be messy.

It seems it may be helpful to expand further on this subject.

According to the dictionary, the definition of shadow work is:

"Any process to become conscious of a shadow aspect of one's subconscious."

According to Wikipedia, the definition of shadow work is:

"In analytical psychology, the shadow is an unconscious aspect of the personality that does not correspond with the ego ideal, leading the ego to resist and project the shadow. In short, the shadow is the self's emotional blind spot, projected; e.g., trickster."

Carl Jung was a famous psychiatrist and psychoanalyst who founded analytical psychology. Jung's work has been influential in the fields of psychiatry, anthropology, archaeology, literature, philosophy, psychology, and religious studies. Jung stated the shadow to be the unknown dark side of the personality. According to him, the shadow, in being instinctive and irrational, is prone to psychological projection. This is when one projects a moral deficiency on someone else due to recognizing their own personal inferiority within themselves.

Not addressing the subconscious shadow self can lead to some archaic and undesirable thoughts and behaviours rising to the surface of our well being:

  • Can create an inflated ego.

  • Begin to self savotage or self harm.

  • Start self-loathing or have low self esteme.

  • Self deceit and deceiving others.

  • Have anxiety and/or depression.

  • Become self absorption or conceitedness.

  • Struggle to have healthy relationships.

  • Displaying offensive behaviour towards others unnecessarily.

There are different techniques of shadow work other than the popular writing or journaling techniques that are more commonly used. Here are some examples of the different ways in which shadow work can be implemented:

  • Journaling or writing a diary

I feel it important to start the list with the most popular and commonly used techniques for shadow work. Described as written exercises, shadow work journaling challenges or brings to light our subconscious tramas and traits that are hidden from an external view and even hidden from ourselves.

  • Shadow work Meditation

Meditations, including some guided meditations have been designed to analyse and sort inner subconscious thoughts and tramas for the purpose of inner enlightenment.

  • Use of Affirmations

Knowing ones inner self well is really the goal in most shadow work activities. Affirmations help to confirm and be more confident with ourselves, inside and out.

  • Partake in inner dialog with self

Discussing and analysing our own thought patterns and relating with how situations have made us feel, or reacted, or how something was received, etc.

  • The 3-2-1 process of shadow work

The 3-2-1 Process is a procedure of acceptance which involves addressing the parts of the shadow self first in the 3rd person (facing it), then in the 2nd person (talking to it) and finally in the 1st person (being it).

  • Re-evaluate conscious goodness

Conscious goodness is the sense or consciousness of the moral goodness or blameworthiness of one's own conduct, intentions, or character together with a feeling of obligation to do right or be good from deep within the subconscious.

  • Counseling or Therapy

There is professional assistance available such a counselor or therapist that can help to be extremely effective with the use of different shapdow work techniques to analyse thoughts and emotions of the sub conscious.

  • High Magick

With the focus on soul evolution and self empowerment, high magick can also be implemented as a form of shadow work within ritual and ceremonial rites.

Some benifits from doing shadow work are:

  • Gain more confidence and self-esteem.

  • Improve your creativity.

  • Build better relationships with others.

  • Practice self-acceptance.

  • Discover your hidden talents.

  • Improve your overall wellness.

  • Increase your compassion toward others.

  • Have better clarity.

Shadow work helps to reduce undesirable projections onto others when interacting with them. When comfortable with ourselves, we're less likely to be triggered by other people's personality quirks and traits. This can also help you feel more compassionate toward others. You no longer see the undesirable side of yourself reflected in other people.

For example of more shadow work exercises, please feel free to visit:

It is in hopes that this blog entry provided some more clarity on the immense topic of shadow work. Please feel free to submit any questions you may have regarding anything witchcraft or Wiccan related to

Thank you for reading my blog!

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