Laurie Swanson Blog

Finding Gratitude For Your Dark Side

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This time of year we are often looking at the many things for which we have gratitude. Sure, I can list many things that I am grateful for but what about:

My impulsivity

My parents' divorce

Being overweight

My addictive past

Yelling at my kids

I should be grateful for these???

Yes, there is pay dirt in your dark side and by shining a light on it you would be surprised that you might actually feel empowered in a way you never have before. At least that is what it did for me.

Here is a simple exercise that will help you open up to the gift of your dark side.

    • Write down all those things that occurred in your past that you consider "dark". My parents' divorce was a dark time for me.
    • Write down all those things that you took part in that you wish you hadn't. Standing on the sidelines in grade school and not speaking up while a kid was made fun of and actually taking part in the bullying a couple of times is a dark memory for me.
    • Write down all those behaviors that many would consider negative or you don't like about yourself. My impulsivity has often bit me in the butt.

What are you ashamed of? #Nameyourdarkside

    • Use your best Darth Vader voice (it never hurts to laugh when working on the dark side) and say aloud all those things you wrote down. Get it out of you. Go into a forest and let it rip!

Become Darth Vader #ClaimYourDarkSide

    • Become Luke Skywalker! Pull out your light saber and begin to see what is on the other side of the darkness. Using my previous examples I would say that why I am strongly empathetic is because of the pain I felt for not helping out that young kid when I could have. I would say my parents' divorce has led me down a long and winding road but I can take a look at my life trajectory and see how the divorce directly contributed to my becoming a life coach with a strong desire to help people live a life they yearn for by helping them overcome addictive behaviors and negative thinking. My impulsive nature has led me to opportunities that, if I had hesitated, I would have lost. For example I placed a bid on our first condo in the city even though my husband was still at work! I am convinced that if I had waited one of the two other offers that came in shortly after ours would have been selected.

#Gratitiudeforyourdarkside How has your dark side benefited you in your life?

Your dark side is a part of you. It is like the pain you feel when you touch a hot stove. It informs you. Do not back away from your dark side, name it, claim it and reframe it! Your dark side is something to have gratitude for this season.


By reading my coaching services blog, you acknowledge that I am not a licensed psychologist or health care professional and my services do not replace the care of psychologists or other healthcare professionals. Coaching is in no way to be construed or substituted as psychological counseling or any other type of therapy or medical advice. I will at all times exercise my best professional efforts, skills and care. However, I cannot guarantee the outcome of coaching efforts and/or recommendations in my newsletter and my comments about the outcome are expressions of opinion only. I cannot make any guarantees other than to deliver the coaching services purchased as described.

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