Updated: Oct 23, 2019
Today I stood in the driveway of the service department at a car dealership and was told that I made a receptionist cry.
After driving away my first reaction was, "it wasn't my fault. It was the fifth time I called. She shouldn't be so sensitive. If she hadn't asked me the stupid question...When I worked on reception..."
All of these are invalid responses designed to deflect the responsibility of my actions on to someone else. This is projection and victimhood.
When I listened to myself and these excuses I paused, redirected and said aloud, "I take responsibility for my actions and know that I did not act well."
I also said aloud, "my shadow trait is to launch into intolerance, blame, and sarcasm directed at others when I am frustrated and annoyed. This is what I need to work on."
When we accept our unlikable traits, the ones we deny or project on to others as blame, we are "owning our shadow."
This is a phrase I see a lot about the place but I often fail to see those talking about it giving real life examples.
Today, in the midst of a stressful situation, instead of acknowledging my frustration like a responsible adult I regressed to a sarcastic bitch to a woman who was trying to do her job. I felt guilty and responsible but because these two emotions made me uncomfortable I played the "well it's her fault not mine" game until I slapped myself out of denial.
Guess what: I'm an adult. And it is my job to act like one. Part of that is taking responsibility for my actions, all of them, good and bad. Owning them, and admitting I need to put in some effort and make some change.
There is no shame in admitting to yourself and others that you make mistakes. There is no problem with seeing a shortcoming in yourself - it's called growth.
We find ourselves stepping into Mercury's first retrograde for 2019 and today I was shown an area where I need to grow and move forward. How is that a bad thing?
Sure, we can stick out heads in the sand and think we are prefect but where the fun in that? And better yet, how does that get us to where we want to be?
Owning your shadow is confronting, sometimes painful, and you may even feel a little embarrassed but it's the only way to grow.