The one you can?t see Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 21 November 2012 08:50
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The one you can’t see

To read about a journey is never the same as going on one. After all, you don’t lick the pages of a recipe book and expect to taste the food, do you? Keeping this in mind, I’m going to give you a really cool project, but it will only work if you do it; not if you merely read about it. Okay?

The concept comes from a Margaret Lynch video. She says that it’s not a trick; it’s just the way we are wired and it goes like this: Think of someone you really admire. For those of you trying to keep a small business afloat in difficult economic times and struggling to attract the right kind of customers – think of a mentor in your chosen career field. Look, if you’ve never had a real-life mentor, it doesn’t matter; it can even be a character in a movie or someone you’ve read about.

Now you are going to write that person a letter in which you tell him/her the characteristics you admire in him/her. Start your letter with ‘dear xxx’ (substitute the person’s name with xxx) and end it by signing off with your own name.

Please just stop reading at this point and write the letter. You did? Okay, what you do now is substitute the ‘dear xxx’ with your own name. At the end where you sign off, substitute your name with ‘your ideal customer/fan/supporter’, whichever description suits your career field.

Look at the qualities you’ve described in the person you admire – that is called your light shadow. Like everything else in life it works on the basis of it-takes-one-to-know-one. There’s no way you can see something in somebody else that you don’t already have inside of you.

That which you love about someone else – that is how to find the clue to your brilliance, your beauty, your power. Look out in the world and think: What gets me excited? And you find your light shadow.

Conversely, that which irritates you so much in other people . . . sorry, girlfriend, but that’s your shadow; the stuff you suppress in yourself. Bet you’ll give a different answer next time someone asks you what it is you really hate in other people.

Still, Marianne Williamson’s famous quote says that it is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. Marianne teamed up with Deepak Chopra and Debbie Ford in Debbie’s most recent book, ‘The shadow effect’. Debbie has been teaching readers how to identify, face and embrace their shadows in eight best-selling books on the topic.

She says that there is only one person in the world you can't see – yourself. The stuff which annoys you in other people or situations reflects the parts of yourself that you don’t like back to you.

Take a situation that irritates you. “In fact, the worse it is, the better it is to heal ourselves,” Debbie says. Chances are you’ll often find yourself faced with a familiar kind of irritation in a situation. We’ll be drawn to particular situations and people, be they good or bad, until we can recognise our own light and darkness.

“If you're not dealing with your own shadow every day, it will come up and bite you,” Debbie says.
That is precisely why Peter Pan went back to look for his shadow. In Sir James Matthew Barrie's ‘Peter Pan’ – one of the best-loved literary fantasies of this century – Peter is a boy from Neverland who refuses to grow up.

He was visiting the Darling household to listen to stories when the family dog started barking. Peter escaped through the window, but his shadow stayed behind. The next night Peter and Tinker Bell returned to fetch Peter’s shadow. When they found it, they accidentally woke Wendy Darling who couldn’t believe her eyes – Peter was trying to stick his shadow back on with soap.

“How exactly like a boy,” Wendy said.

“I shall sew it on for you,” she said and sewed the shadow on to Peter's foot.

This is what Debbie Ford has been doing for people with her Shadow Process. Whether light or dark, it’s much better to turn around, look your shadow in the eye, and see that you need to ‘sew’ this unacknowledged part of yourself back onto your Achilles heel.

Just one thing – it is as Wendy warned Peter: “I daresay it will hurt a little.”

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