Shadow Work - Exploding Idea
PLUS - an exploding trend and some great business ideas
Shout out to @yasmeen for this week’s idea. We ran a competition (link) on Twitter (X?), seeing who could come up with the most interesting new business idea, and Yasmeen came in with a winner. We’re covering it today.
Now let’s get into it…
In this week's Exploding Ideas
This weeks exploding idea: Shadow work is trending on TikTok
New business ideas: 3 shadow work businesses you can create
Here’s what I’m reading: 2 articles and 1 book I’m reading this week to level up my skills
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Read time: 1 min 58 sec
Exploding Idea: Shadow Work
As you may be aware, mental health awareness has been on the rise over the past year, especially amongst the younger generations.
According to studies by Harvard and other organizations, there’s a direct link between social media and various mental health issues.
Somewhat ironically, mental health has become a huge topic of conversation on the social media platforms that are simultaneously perpetuating them.
On TikTok, there is a somewhat fringe mental health trend that is skyrocketing in interest: Shadow Work.
Shadow work is a psychological practice that involves confronting suppressed or denied parts of oneself (like guilt, embarrassment etc.).
While therapists and spiritual guides can help guide this process, a trend of self-guided journaling, has become extremely popular (link to an example).
Rather than being confined to the traditional therapy setting, shadow work offers a some attractive features:
1. Accessibility & Affordability: Most people only require a blank notebook to start, but specialized journals are also available for a modest fee.
2. Personal Growth: It's used for healing and self-love.
3. Modern Relevance: It addresses modern-day issues, such as intergenerational trauma.
4. Self-empowerment: Individuals take charge of their own healing process.
While the concept dates back to the 1930s, TikTok has given it new life.
Keila Degado (author name Keila Shaheen), who previously worked at TikTok, has taken advantage of this trend through her brand, Zenfulnote (link to her TikTok).
The popularity of shadow work presents an opportunity for entrepreneurs. The key demographic engaging with this trend is 18-24 year-olds. The majority of this demographic engaging, is from the U.S.
While established players like Zenfulnote have made significant headway and have made more than $80,000 in a short period of time, there's room for complementary products.
Entrepreneurs can develop shadow work resources like free PDFs, using platforms like ChatGPT-4, and distribute them through various channels, such as the #shadowwork hashtag on TikTok and relevant subreddit groups on Reddit.
Here’s a link to the subreddits that would be interested (link).
Once trust is established, further products like prompt books and courses can be introduced.
Learn how to monetize this trend in the Deep Dive (link here)
Business Idea #1
Business Name: ShadowGuide
Industry: Personal Development & Wellbeing
Problem: The modern era has brought in an array of stressors, from the challenges of digital life to navigating complex societal issues. Coupled with historical and personal traumas, many individuals are seeking accessible, affordable, and effective tools for introspection and emotional growth. However, despite the surge in interest, many individuals feel lost on where to start or how to proceed, especially if they cannot afford a therapist or lack access to guided sessions.
Solution: ShadowGuide will be a digital platform offering structured, self-paced shadow work courses, complemented by interactive journaling tools. The platform will be tailored to both beginners and those more advanced in their journey, ensuring a wide audience reach. Each course will utilize multimedia — including video, audio, and text — to guide users through the shadow work process. The interactive journaling tool will allow users to document their insights, with AI-driven prompts (utilizing a tool like ChatGPT) to assist them in deeper introspection. Additionally, the platform can offer a community aspect, allowing users to engage in moderated group discussions, ensuring a safe and supportive environment.
Competitive Advantage: While there are many personal development platforms, ShadowGuide's differentiation lies in its specialization in shadow work, a trending area with significant current interest but little targeted resources. The incorporation of AI-driven prompts will offer users a semi-guided experience, bridging the gap between fully self-driven introspection and therapist-led sessions. This AI-driven approach not only aids users but offers scalability to the platform. The community aspect ensures user retention, fostering a sense of belonging and support. Furthermore, by targeting the key demographic of 18-24 year-olds who are already displaying interest in this trend, especially in platforms like TikTok, ShadowGuide can rapidly capture a ready audience.
Business Idea #2
Business Name: InnerLight Box
Industry: Personal Development & Self-Care Subscription Services
Problem: With the resurgence of interest in shadow work, there's a growing demand for tangible, curated tools that guide and support individuals on this introspective journey. While many resources are digital, there's an inherent appeal in tactile, physical products that can ground a person during their self-reflection.
Solution: InnerLight Box is a monthly subscription box service that provides carefully curated tools to assist individuals on their shadow work journey. Each box includes a blend of educational content (booklets, cards with guided prompts), self-care items (scented candles, crystals, essential oils), and unique journaling accessories. The educational content will be curated in partnership with experts in the field of psychology and personal development, ensuring subscribers receive accurate and actionable insights.
Competitive Advantage: By combining tactile self-care items with educational tools, InnerLight Box offers a holistic approach that caters to both the emotional and intellectual needs of individuals. The monthly nature of the subscription ensures continuous engagement and allows subscribers to progress in their shadow work journey at a steady pace. Partnering with experts not only ensures the content's credibility but also provides opportunities for collaboration, workshops, and exclusive subscriber events, further enhancing the brand's value proposition. Targeting platforms like TikTok and Instagram for marketing, leveraging influencers in the personal development space, and offering personalized box variations based on user feedback can swiftly position InnerLight Box as the go-to resource for those embarking on or deepening their shadow work journey.
Business Idea #3
Business Name: ShadowTales Podcast
Industry: Digital Content and Personal Development
Problem: As the concept of shadow work gains traction, particularly among younger audiences, there's a burgeoning demand for accessible, digestible, and engaging content that explores real-life experiences and provides actionable advice. While articles and videos are abundant, there's still a vacuum when it comes to deeper, narrative-driven explorations of the subject.
Solution: ShadowTales is a bi-weekly podcast that dives into personal stories of individuals who have embarked on their shadow work journey. Each episode will feature a guest, ranging from everyday people to professionals in the field, sharing their unique shadow work experiences, challenges faced, insights gained, and advice for listeners. Interspersed with these stories are episodes led by experts explaining specific techniques, providing guided meditations, and addressing common misconceptions.
Competitive Advantage: The power of storytelling cannot be overstated. By weaving together personal narratives with expert insights, ShadowTales provides listeners with both the emotional resonance and the practical tools they need. Podcasts have the advantage of being consumable during commutes, workouts, or other daily activities, making them a preferred medium for many. To learn more about podcasting and how to stand out read this article.
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