First off, I love shadow work. Digging into the unconscious for motives, beliefs, and ideologies that we pretend don’t exist when they are one of the biggest factors driving our lives.

Many therapists love to do shadow work, because it can transform a client’s life through unbelievable insight and with rapid efficacy.

So, here’s a super important question to all you therapist folk out there…

What do you think is the most common, least talked about shadow that therapists face in their lives?

Well let’s go through the list, because I’ve done the research in my business.

It’s not sex. There are actually plenty of therapists that will tell you all about their sex lives and their sex toys and whatever else you want to know or don’t want to know.

It’s not romance. Trust me. Therapists want to talk hours about this one.

Spirituality? No way. Most therapists I meet would happily indulge me in a conversation about their own relationship to spirituality.

Body Image? Well, that one might be hard, but people spend a lot of time and energy working through it.

Interests? Nah. Who doesn’t want to talk about the thing they are most interested in.

So what the heck is the least talked about topic for therapists that also has one of the biggest impacts on their lives?

MONEY.

I’ve surveyed hundreds of therapists and almost none of them had a dialogue longer than an hour or two about the topic of money in their graduate training. Most had no dialogue about the topic of money.

Think about this. Out of all the topics we face with our clients and all the hours we spent in trainings, discussing money is almost always left behind.

Why?

The answer is simple. Money is one of the biggest shadows for most people in our society, including therapists. Heck it’s definitely been one of my biggest shadows. There’s a huge taboo that money is a private affair. So, it’s often left out of personal development work unless you start looking for it.

And if you do find it, it’s often just get rich quick schemes and law of attraction crap.

For those of you where it was mentioned in graduate school, I bet you saw professors and colleagues expressing the topic in a shadowy way.

Have you heard some of these statements:

“Don’t expect to get rich in this profession.”

“We’re not in it for the money.”

“People can’t afford that much for therapy.”

“How is anyone going to afford self-pay rates without insurance?”

“I don’t need a lot of money to be happy.”

The real problem is that very few people have committed to delving into their shadow around money.

I’m not just talking about a few sessions with a therapist. I’m talking about devoting a period of your life to learning how to master your relationship to money, so money doesn’t control you anymore, you control money indefinitely.

I’m in that journey right now and have been devoted to it for about five years. I’ve learned as much about myself in the journey of mastering money and the search for financial freedom as anything I’ve ever devoted myself to.

If you think you want to be a successful entrepreneur and you want to achieve financial freedom before you are too old to appreciate it, addressing the money shadow has to be at the top of the list or it will never happen.

Here’s just a little snippet of what I’ve learned so far so you get what I’m talking about:

If you minimize your need for money, you will always be enslaved by it.

If you inflate your goals to attain financial freedom, you will always chase after it.

If you are jealous of others financial gains, you will always sell yourself short.

If you are resentful of others successes, you will make excuses of why it’s ok to not succeed.

If you are infatuated with the rich and famous, you’re not owning the master within yourself.

If you believe money hurts people more than it helps people, you’re unwilling to look at how much it has helped you in your own life.

If you think it’s unjust for people to have more money than others, you haven’t owned that you’re envious of people who have more than you.

If you believe you should struggle by only having enough money to get by, you haven’t recognized that you haven’t mastered your relationship to your survival.

If you set goals financially and make a solid plan, you are much more likely to achieve them.

If you place a high value on mastering the flow of money in your life, you will learn how to increase your wealth in a progressive manner.

If you value saving and investing more than consumption, your savings will increase and your investments will eventually set you free financially.

If you move beyond depending solely on the hourly model of income for survival, you will create passive income streams that allow you to live your life in accordance with your highest vision.

There are actually a limited number of aspects to your life that you can master.

Any area of life that you choose to ignore or not master enslaves you.

Money is a major aspect of your life that will follow you to your death.

I’m committed to mastering this one and helping you do the same.

If you’re onboard, I would love to hear from you where you are at in the process. Write a comment and let’s here from you.

It’s impossible for you to do this in isolation and there’s really no reason to stay stuck anymore.

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Keith Kurlander

Keith Kurlander is the founder of Higher Practice, a company dedicated to helping therapists achieve their highest potential in private practice. He has two decades of combined experience in business administration, group facilitation, teaching at the undergraduate and graduate level, yoga instruction and as a licensed professional counselor in private practice.

One thought on “The Greatest Shadow Therapists Face

  1. Supervising and doing consultations for a lot of pre-licensed and newly-licensed therapists developing their private practices, exploring our personal, cultural and professional attitudes towards and beliefs about money and worth comes into play a lot! I can count on one hand the amount of therapists I know who have not struggled with their money Shadow. It’s a worthy and important exploration!

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