Shadow Work Session 14: 5 Of Wands

Before getting started on my shadow work activity for the day, I want to make a note of something that took place yesterday between me and my husband, as I feel it is is relevant to the current work I am doing. So, ever since my husband has started to do better (not perfect) with his recovery, he has been around the house a lot more than usual. I guess I never realized before just how much I had gotten used to having the house to myself most of the time. In the past, I was the only one doing all the work, so everything was always one my way. However, now that my husband has been home more and has been trying to be more helpful, I have found myself lashing out at him. Instead of being happy that he is around, I have been feeling like me space is being invaded. Instead of being happy to have his help, I have been over critical of how he does things because they aren’t how I do things. I have been trying to “train” him to do things my way by getting cranky with him, but instead I have really just been making him feel like shit. I have been giving him a really hard time for no reason, just because I have been stuck in my own way of doing things. Through the work that I have been doing here, I finally caught on to this behavior and apologized for it. My husband said that he was thankful that I admitted this and apologized for this because he didn’t know how to tell me how I was making him feel without risking that I would “snap” on him again. I think this is progress.

So, yesterday I went over the type of inner strength that I want to develop so that I can work better with others. Today I think that I am going to take an honest inventory of where I am right now. Again, this post may hop around a bit…its is just how I think…I’m free writing.

Currently, I have a good idea of what my values and morals are. However, I feel that they are swayed by the opinions of others more often than I would like. I have an aversion to conflict and confrontation, so more often than not I will either keep my thoughts and opinions to myself to avoid this. As a result, the people around me feel heard but often get the wrong impression of who I am…thinking that I am like them because I didn’t open my mouth to say otherwise. I am afraid of judgement, so I keep my thoughts to myself. I feel that in general, I am not as intelligent as others when it comes to major important issues, so I invalidate my own opinions and keep myself from learning by not engaging with others. I like to do thing MY way, so I often avoid working with others so I don’t have to listen to anyone else’s opinions. I don’t like being helped by others for the same reason, yet I am often frustrated that no one offers. I typically respect other people’s thoughts and opinions and give them the space to express themselves. However, the only time that I really engage with anything on a deep meaningful level is when it affirms something that I already believe. I like to learn…but I am often stubborn and hesitant to change my beliefs in the face of new information. I need time to process things on my own. I feel like I know who I am as a person, yet I am not confident enough in myself to put myself out there and stand my ground. I allow others to make me second guess myself. I am afraid of being wrong in public so I don’t usually engage in conversation. As a result, I am not a very memorable person and typically fall into the background. I still desire approval and validation from others even though I am currently working to resolve this. I am afraid to be myself in front of others because I am scared that they will judge me in the same way that I judge myself and others. All this fear, stubbornness, and self doubt makes me not want to work with others. I avoid conflict, and when I am forced to engage in it I either give over the reigns completely or I remain inflexible and unmoving in my stance. There usually isn’t a middle ground. In group interactions, I either want to be the star of the show or the wallflower. I don’t feel comfortable playing a supporting role in the middle. I respect other people’s right to be heard but under value my own. Even when I passionately disagree with something, I usually keep my mouth shut. On the positive side, I always try to be fair to others in my interactions. People usually find me agreeable if unmemorable. I find that I am more opinionated with my mom and husband than I am with others. I think that this may be because I feel that their love for me would not be changed through disagreements. I feel a BIT safer to be myself, to make mistakes, and to be wrong around them. Sometimes I don’t always know what is worth fighting for because I’m not really a fighter. Because I am not good with confrontation, I tend to avoid big issues that are worth the fight in favor of petty disagreements, like the one that I mentioned in the beginning of this post with my husband, because I feel that it is less likely that I will be proven wrong. I am easily hurt by the opinions of others. Though I do care about others, I think that I truly hold myself back and hide my true self as a form of self preservation. A BIG issue that I have when talking/working with others, is that I HATE being talked over. This is a huge pet peeve for me and it seems to happen every time I try to step forward in a group conversation or a passionate debate. I feel that everyone is just waiting for their turn to speak and does not really care what I have to say…..if this is the case then why should I even try to get involved at all. I feel that my thoughts and opinions don’t really make a difference anyways so why voice them? Why not just let the loud mouths run the show because they will either way? At least if I stay out of things, the loud mouths can run the show without trampling all over me first (when I say loud mouths here I am referring to people who tend to take the lead in group situations not because they are right, but because they have a knack for talking over others to drive in their points). I don’t feel that I have set healthy boundaries with others. Instead, I just avoid others so they wont cross me without making my boundaries fully known. I tend to feel like others are my opponents rather than my team mates…I don’t know why this is.

I have much work to do…

These shadow work posts are truly intended for my own self discovery and development, but I appreciate those of you who took the time to read this. I plan to continue working with my shadow aspects surrounding the 5 of wands for the rest of the week OR until I feel that it is time to move onto another shadow aspect/card.

Love Always, AnxiouslyM

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