Written by Monica Krake + Hannah Exner
Given that so many are diving into shadow work at the beginning of this year (you gotta feel it to heal it!) Hannah and I have put together this resource to share a list of the best shadow work guides we’ve discovered – to help you navigate this deep work of self love.
Everywhere we turn, people are talking about clearing. Clearing what no longer serves. Clearing stuck patterns. Clearing old stories. Clearing trauma. One thing’s for sure, when we’re stuck in patterns for most of our life, it is incredibly powerful to invite in a new level of awareness to help us see what we’re struggling to see clearly. Especially if the goal is to find freedom from patterns that aren’t serving us. Most often, this means transforming core beliefs about ourselves that just aren’t true. Like, “I’m not worthy of love” or “I need to work really hard to get what I want” or “Everyone else seems to have it figured out but I’m always behind.”
We humans have a negativity bias. Maybe it formed in the early carnations of life in order to help us survive primal times. Today, there is a huge amount of emerging research to show that in fact we can change our lives by changing our beliefs about ourselves and the world around us. This is why shadow work or inner child work (we use these two terms interchangeably) painful as it may be, is critical. We need to face, and even befriend, those parts that we’d prefer to never talk about, never expose, and never have anyone see, in order to be free. Back in the day, teachers like Debbie Ford and Byron Katie brought the concept of shadow work to the mainstream. Today, we love how new modalities are emerging that blend talk therapy with somatic work, to help us shift the patterns rooted in our bodies. So powerful.
So, if you’re ready to listen to your inner child and transmute the pain of your shadow into freedom + joy, here are the guides we’d recommend turning to for support.
A Trauma-Informed Coach and Energy Healer, Lea’s a powerful healer and guide. All wounds are rooted in trauma, which can be anything from sexual abuse to neglect to feeling shame about who you are at the core. Lea brings a dynamic, compassionate approach to her work helping clients process and release trauma from their lives so they can show up in their unclouded truth and live from an authentic place of power. Having sufferened multiple traumas in her own life, she’s a true inspiration in many ways.
Natalie is a PSYCH-K® Preferred Facilitator, Spiritual Mentor, and Intuitive who helps you tap into your subconscious to free yourself from limiting beliefs in a quick and pain-free way. Shadow/inner child work can be intense, but Natalie’s approach is easeful while still going way beyond the surface level. I recently reviewed the notes from my PSYCH-K® session with Natalie, and was amazed to see how the limiting beliefs we tackled have been totally transformed and no longer hold power in my life.
Emily is a certified nutritionist, herbalist, and hypnotherapist who blends her modalities to help clients feel whole as physical and energetic beings. Hypnotherapy is an incredible tool for exploring the roots of the beliefs, habits, and patterns that we carry, reshaping and releasing those that no longer serve us, and tapping into our intuitions to serve our current selves in kinder, more empowered ways. If you’re looking for gentle support in your process of internal inquiry, Emily is one of the most tender guides I know.
Psych & Soul is run by two amazing clinical counsellors, Rani Sandhu and Laura Montgomery. Based in North Vancouver, BC, both Rani and Laura are available for Zoom or phone sessions and work with clients internationally. I love that they’ve got years of cutting edge clinical counselling approaches under their belt, but also tap into somatic, experiential and spiritual inquiry to help people with what they call ‘Soul Work.’ Rani specializes in working with couple’s and believes that couple’s often come together to do their soul work in partnership, and Laura loves working with individuals, parents and young and emerging adults. Soul Work invites you to befriend and transform those stuck, often lifelong patterns that you desire to change. Truly, anything is possible for your life.
Adrenna is a Spiritual Educator and Body Deva Practitioner who provides a compassionate and safe space to work with inner children, past lives, shadow, and ancestral patterns. Having experienced her own dark night of the soul, she is well equipped to support those who are experiencing spiritual-psychic awakenings, empaths, and survivors of trauma. In my own session with Adrenna, I was able to speak to my inner child during a spiritual crisis and hear her request for spiritual mentorship and support.
Based in India, Dr. Priya specializes in Inner Child Work. She holds a doctorate degree in holistic and spiritual healing, and she’s also a Holistic Life Coach, Author, and a Reiki Master and Teacher. If you’re ready to connect back with those stories you picked up as a young one, so that you can release and shift them, foreva, I’d recommend Dr. Priya Saklani’s Heal Your Inner Child program, which is essentially a set of sessions that will support you in releasing any wounds/trauma or limiting patterns you’ve picked up as a child. Dr. Priya is based in India but is very accessible for Zoom or phone therapy sessions to anyone around the world. According to many experts including Dr. Saklani, if you haven’t dealt with your inner child, it’s pretty darn impossible to move forward in life.
Looking for a particular type of teacher or practitioner? Take a peak at this directory of the teachers we’ve personally vetted and recommend.