7 Important Reasons to Bring Shadow Work into Your Mental Health Routine This Year

By Dominica


Last Updated: December 27, 2022

Shadow work is a practice that helps us to understand and confront our own shadow self, which is the hidden parts of ourselves that we can’t see or don’t want to accept or acknowledge.

The shadow is the unconscious part of the psyche.

Let's take a look at shadow work - what it is, how to do it and seven reasons it could be a good idea to incorporate it into your mental health practice. 



How to Do Shadow Work

An example of how someone can do shadow work is by setting aside time for self-reflection.

This could be done by spending a few moments at the beginning and end of each day to reflect on what has happened and how you felt about it.

It is also important to become mindful of your thoughts, feelings, and actions in order to be able to recognize when undesired behaviors are occurring in the moment.

When this happens, take some time to explore why these behaviors may have occurred. This could involve:

  • writing down thoughts that come up during this exploration
  • talking through the situation with someone else or
  • discussing with a qualified mental health professional

Additionally, setting aside time each week to dig deeper into personal issues can facilitate more effective shadow work. This could include engaging in journaling practices such as free-writing or stream-of-consciousness writing in order to gain insights about oneself.

Meditation can also be beneficial as it allows for greater awareness of both conscious and subconscious thoughts and feelings.

Also, practicing mindfulness in daily life will allow for greater awareness of your behavior patterns so that shadows can begin to be addressed rather than avoided and suppressed, potentially leading to more meaningful personal growth over time.

Shadow work can be uncomfortable, but it is an essential part of improving mental health.



7 Reasons Why You Should Incorporate Shadow Work into Your Daily Routine

1. It helps you identify and accept your negative emotions.

We all experience negative emotions such as fear, anger, sadness, and jealousy.

These feelings can be uncomfortable, but they are a normal part of being human. By engaging in shadow work, you can become aware of these feelings, identify their source, and learn how to accept them instead of suppressing them.                                                              


2. Shadow work helps you gain insight into yourself and your relationships with others.

When we engage in shadow work, we gain deeper understanding of why we do certain things or behave in certain ways around certain people.

This self-awareness can help us to become better communicators and build healthier relationships with those who matter most to us.                                                                                       


3. Shadow work helps you develop your emotional intelligence (EQ).

EQ refers to our ability to recognize and manage our own emotions, as well as the emotions of those around us.

This is an important skill for anyone looking to improve their mental health and wellbeing. Why? Because it helps us better navigate difficult conversations or situations that may arise in our lives—such as dealing with stress or conflict at home or at work—in a healthy manner.                                       


4. It helps you cultivate self-compassion.

You can cultivate self-compassion by learning how to forgive yourself for mistakes made in the past or present, while also accepting yourself for who you are right now—flaws included!

Self-compassion is key to improving our mental health. It allows us to show kindness toward ourselves without judgment when faced with challenging emotions or events that life throws at us from time to time.


5. Shadow work helps reduce anxiety levels.

Doing shadow work can help reduce anxiety levels by helping us understand where anxious thoughts stem from. We can then address them more effectively before they turn into full-blown panic attacks or spiraling worries that consume our day-to-day lives!

By confronting the root cause of our anxieties through shadow work, we can learn how best to cope with them rather than avoid them altogether, which only serves as a temporary solution at best!


6. It encourages personal growth by pushing us out of our comfort zone.

Doing shadow work may help you get out of your comfort zone so that you can explore new possibilities within yourself that might have otherwise gone unnoticed or unexplored!

It also teaches us how important it is for our mental health (and overall wellbeing) to be open minded about taking risks –even if it means failing – so long as there is something meaningful gained from the experience!


7. Shadow work leads to greater resilience when faced with challenging situations.

Doing shadow work consistently helps us become more resilient. It teaches us how important it is for our mental health (and overall wellbeing) to have tools such as self-awareness and self-compassion on hand so that we don't crumble under pressure.

By engaging in shadow work regularly, we become stronger individuals who know how best handle life's inevitable ups and downs without feeling overwhelmed by them!




Engaging in shadow work may feel uncomfortable at first due its focus on embracing dark parts of ourselves, but it truly has immense benefits when it comes to improving one's mental health over time.

From increased self-awareness and empathy towards others, cultivating resilience against tough times ahead; there are countless reasons why incorporating this practice into your daily routine is beneficial not only now, but also down the road too!

If you're looking for a way to enhance your mental health journey, then begin doing shadow work today.

To learn more about this topic, check out the following guide:

Inner Healing Work: What Is It And Why Do People Fear It?

Photo by Will Mu


8 comments on “7 Important Reasons to Bring Shadow Work into Your Mental Health Routine This Year”

  1. There is no personal growth without doing shadow work. And yes it is uncomfortable to uncover hidden parts of ourselves we would like to deny or not see!

    1. Absolutely Klaus! Just make sure you have the support and information you need when you are doing shadow work. As you say, it can be very difficult and even traumatizing for people to reveal their past and things that happened to them. It is important work, but we also need to respect how scary and hard it can be.

    1. Hi Tammy, we are actually working on one to come very soon! We will keep the community posted, as we are soon going to be launching some new Personal Development courses. If you are on our email list, you will know as soon as we are ready to launch! 🙂

  2. Very interesting information. I'm interested in learning more about Shadow work. Where can I find an instructional Guide Book to practice this work with my clients?

    1. Hi Agatha, we are currently working on a Shadow Work course. We will announce when it launches as soon as we have a date!

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