The Shadow Side And The Narcissist.

Carl Jung discovered with the concept of a shadow side.

The shadow is the hidden parts of ourselves, where our conscience rejects the parts we don’t like or feel comfortable with about ourselves.

The shadow side of us is either our conscious ego trying to suppress the parts of which our ego doesn’t like or our unconscious parts of ourselves, our shadow self.

Our shadow side is often the part of the self that isn’t known consciously to ourselves.

The shadow is often what we perceive to be those negatives within us. However, they can be positives that’s others have shamed us into believing is negative.

Those who’ve been around narcissistic people often have low self-esteem due to all the belittling, shaming and invalidating, having our thoughts, feelings, opinions, needs, wants, desires, dreams, how we speak, how we look, dismissed, criticised, judged or neglected. Often we can within our subconscious try to help those who we can see ourselves in, usually even the most arrogant, grandiose, charming narcissists have insecurites, as our conscious or subconscious has these, we can pick up on these in others, we can not only be charmed in by these people because of their charismatic mannerisms, but we can subconsciously pick up on those insecurities within them, wanting to fix those who are unaware of these insecurites and don’t want to be fixed as they believe they are special and entitled to special attention and treatment, the more their outside persona, hides their shadow persona, the more they believe their outside persona, we can also be judgmental, such as if you believe in loyalty and respect, family values, would not risk hurting another or splitting another family up, we can be overly judgmental on those who are willing to engage in extra marital affairs especially when the person knows about the husband, wife or children, especially if the third party is a family member or a friend, we can judge those who’s values, standards, beliefs don’t match ours, often believing we should teach them the right way, not understanding they’re on a different journey to us. That life is tough. Life is painful. It’s not up to us to teach others. It’s up to us to teach ourselves and learn from our pain so we can gain. Yes, the pain is unfair and seemingly unjust. The longer we live in pain that another causes, the longer we are the ones who suffer, the sooner we find the right method to overcome anxiety, depression, sadness, cptsd etc. The sooner we find our true selves and find the coping mechanisms to handle pain. As pain hits and it hits hard, we can not run from pain. This causes us further pain; we can learn how to handle pain in a way that helps us.

We all make mistakes, so we might have a negative shadow side that we need to work on if we didn’t own those mistakes at the time.

We also might have desires that others have invalidated, so we have buried that side of us for fear of judgment, not feeling enough.

Narcissists shadow side can stem from similar scenarios. Instead of helping others due to their shadow side, they destroy others, their pride and ego take over, they seek to bring others down to compensate for their negative shadow so hidden deep within their unconscious mind they don’t see.

Where the narcissist’s projection could come from and ours, where we recognise we’re not perfect. We hurt, we project our good qualities often hidden as we don’t entirely want to admit our good side for appearing better than another as we know no one person is better, for fear of upsetting another, for fear of judgment as to when we’ve done something good in our past we were invalidated and judged.

The narcissist’s projection is How narcissists play the blame game. 

A narcissists projection is a mix of their manipulative Gaslighting and their manipulative Blame-shifting. As they go all out, distracting you from the truth, as they do their best to cover the truth with distorted lies, as they hide the truth of their toxic, hurtful, negative behaviour from you. At the same time, they get you to doubt and blame yourself and take on the responsibility of the narcissist actions, they get you to defend yourself to them for how you think or feel due to their hurtful ways, so they escape accountability, so they remain in control, and so they get away with their actions time and time again, while slowly sinking you forget under their trance.

Psychological projection is a defence mechanism used by a narcissist to defend their own ego against their own negative qualities, by denying the existence of their own inner faults and placing them onto others. A way to deny theirs and our reality A way of denying something they have done and passing the blame for their behaviour, thoughts or feelings onto others. They can be projecting thoughts, flaws, emotions, characteristics, actions and feelings that they don’t like within themselves.

Protection is the narcissist manipulation method to control the image. The realities they want others to see gaslighting us into losing our minds, often causing Cognitive Dissonance where because we live in two different realities, the one we live and the one we are gaslighted into believing, we then end up living with two very different beliefs, values or ideas, which leaves you disorientated and confused.

When a narcissist judges others often, it’s due to the projection of their shadow side, so they are judging themselves or their envious side, putting others down to feel better for what they themselves lack in.

When looking at our shadow side, we can.

Recognise our insecurities and flaws when we see them in others.

Often why many overlook a narcissist toxic side, overlook the offensive side, as it’s not within themselves, so to them it’s unimaginable someone would do this, why we can blame ourselves, as the times we feel angry is when someone causes that anger within us, so indeed the narcissist isn’t mad at us just because, it must be something we did. The narcissist will gaslight us into believing we did something; we can recognise our anger. However, a narcissist believes you made them angry, even when you did no wrong. Therefore they feel resentment, hurt you and feel better within because to them, they served justice.

A narcissist is often unwilling to open up to their shadow side as that would mean admitting fault, that they are not perfect. We, on the other hand, know we make mistakes.

That shame placed in you that invalidates part of you means we can then judge these qualities in those around us.

If our subconscious doesn’t feel enough we can try to make those around us feel enough, when a narcissist doesn’t feel enough they try to make those around them not feel enough.

You can not change what you do not know. Within a relationship with a narcissist with all their gaslighting we do not know, we are conditioned to look for their bad within us and our good within them. With a narcissist, with all their projection they do, they do not know. They just blame everyone else. Some know some are extremely calculated, most know to an extent, just most don’t know why.

We can not control what we don’t understand. Narcissists can not control themselves as they don’t understand themselves, they can only control themselves if they fear the judgment that will strike down their ego they built so high to stop others from seeing their insecurities.

It has to be the conscious part of us that integrates the unconscious part, and if the unconscious part is too painful, the conscious part will keep finding excuses for it when the shadow sides appear.

Our shadow can happily work against us without even realising it is.

Whatever qualities we deny within ourselves, we see in others. In contrast, during devaluation, a narcissist denies our good. We see the good in them, and while a narcissist denies their wrong/negative, they see their wrong/negative in others. Even though it’s not the others in the wrong, often it’s the narcissists wrong. We are not seeing the narcissists good we are seeing our good which has been suppressed into our subconscious due to the toxic invalidating words of a narcissist, as we can see parts of our shadow side are aware of our flaws. Weakness often explaining these to narcissists. Putting ourselves down, the narcissist will pick these apart to make us consciously feel worse about ourselves.

The narcissist shadow side is often driven by the envy they have for those around them. They seek to destroy the good they see within others that they no longer see within themselves. Our shadow side is often driven by our compassion to help those in pain as we understand how that feels and want to help others not feel that pain. We can then blame ourselves for enabling, feel guilt for walking away, or class ourselves as codependent for wanting to see the good in those. At the same time, we do our best to overlook their bad.

How to help your shadow come into the light?

1. Self-compassion, allow yourself to care for who you are as a person.

2. Self-awareness, mindfulness, not only mindfulness for those around you, becoming more mindful towards yourself, remembering the forgiveness you gave those who hurt you and start giving it to yourself.

3. Honesty, you’re open and honest with others, learn to be more accepting and honest within yourself.

4. Listen to your emotions. When we listen to those emotions, we pay closer attention to our instincts.

5. Listen to how you talk to yourself, talk to yourself how you speak to others, and not how others which are toxic have talked to you.

6. Learning and accepting you are enough.

Seeking knowledge, we are here to grow


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Elizabeth Shaw is not a Doctor or a therapist. She is a mother of five, a blogger, a survivor of narcissistic abuse, and a life coach, She always recommends you get the support you feel comfortable and happy with. Finding the right support for you. Elizabeth has partnered with BetterHelp (Sponsored.) where you will be matched with a licensed councillor, who specialises in recovery from this kind of abuse.

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