Embracing the Shadow

Originally published in  Coaching for Transformation

Last night, as I was sleeping I dreamt-marvelous error! That I had a beehive here in my heart. And the golden bees Were making white combs And sweet honey From my old failures. —Antonio Machado

The shadow is the unconscious or hidden parts of the personality. Jung believed, “in spite of its function as a reservoir for human darkness— or perhaps because of this—the shadow is the seat of creativity.”1 The shadow personifies everything we refuse to acknowledge about ourselves, yet project on others. Robert Bly talks about the shadow as “the long bag we drag behind us.”… Read more

Working with a Wounded Child

Originally published in Coaching for Transformation

Almost everyone has been wounded, physically or emotionally. Our original wounding—the first time we found out that we are not okay—often becomes a driving force in our lives. The first time an innocent child hears, “No!” can be traumatic. Bewildered, the child starts to believe it is flawed or not good enough. Core beliefs become embedded in the psyche, such as, “I don’t matter. I am bad. If I don’t do what people ask, I won’t be loved.” Even people who have had extraordinary parenting and idyllic childhoods usually have a wounded child within.

When a wounded child begins to re-emerge, this is a vulnerable moment.… Read more