All of us are complex being with many layers and aspects of self. In the complex social and relational demands of life it is perfectly normal to have a number of personas such as our professional demeanour. However if our personality becomes too split or layered we can end up feeling untrue to ourselves and dissatisfied with both ourselves and our relationships.
The context of the therapeutic relationship allows exploration of aspects of self that have become split off, repressed or hidden. The psychotherapist’s invitation to you is to bring forth these normally hidden aspects into the safety of the therapeutic relationship, especially the parts that feel most shaming, frightening or unacceptable. When these shadow aspects were formed they represented the best choice available at that time but they may no longer be appropriate to current life circumstances. Bringing these shadow parts of ourselves into the therapeutic space allows the associated fear and anxiety to be overcome, resulting in a more robust sense of self, a greater sense of freedom, and more fulfilment in our relationships.