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The Shadow Effect Book – Facing Your Inner Shadow to Heal

Posted May 18 2010 12:00am

I previously reviewed The Shadow Effect movie by Debbie Ford which featured many inspirational leaders offering tools and advice to help us face our inner shadow.  The Shadow Effect book is a collaboration from a few of my favorite authors; Dr. Deepak Chopra, Marianne Williamson and Debbie Ford.  It is a deeper exploration of this concept “the shadow” and offers many insights to shed light on your shadow. What does facing your shadow mean?  How can facing our darkest qualities give us strength instead of making us want to hide?  I have reflected every day on how to better myself since healing myself over three years ago.  I am still facing my shadow self and with it comes a deeper knowing of myself, a release of emotional pain and spiritual evolution. It is my pleasure to talk to you about The Shadow Effect book and what noticing your shadow can do for you.

“Deepak Chopra, Debbie Ford, and Marianne Williamson New York Times bestselling authors and internationally acclaimed teachers have joined together to share their knowledge on one of the most crucial obstacles to happiness we facethe shadow. These three luminaries, each with a signature approach, bring to light the parts of ourselves we deny but that still direct our life. For it is only when we embrace our shadow that we discover the gifts of our authentic nature.

The shadow exists within all of us. It is a part of us and yet we spend most of our life running from it. But far from being scary, our dark side holds the promise of a better, more fulfilling life. Our shadow makes itself known every day. It is the reason we get furious over a friend showing up ten minutes late, yell at our parents or kids when they have done nothing wrong, and sabotage our own success at the worst possible time. Until we are able to embrace our dualistic nature, we will continue to hurt ourselves and those closest to us and fall short of our potential.

Combining the wisdom of three experts, The Shadow Effect is a practical and profound guide to discovering the gifts of our shadow. These three authors powerfully pierce the veil of our unclaimed self, releasing us from the past and propelling us on a journey to wholeness. No longer living a half life, we are capable of achieving our dreams and reclaiming the happiness that is our birthright.”

Here are some amazing quotes form the book:

I have known patience was a “challenge” for QUITE a while but will admit it took me a while to realize it was a big part of my shadow that affected me EVERY day.  My patience is especially short with myself.  I have great visions for what I want to accomplish and there are times I fall short (in my own head) of my own high expectations.  I rush the Universe and expect it to hurry and catch up. ;-) I KNOW this is not how the world works and by doing this I am actually keeping things away from me, yet the pattern continues in some areas of my life.  Ah, the beloved shadow! Defining your shadow can help on MANY levels.  By identifying your shadow self you can figure out ways that it serves you and ways that you can honor that part of you instead of beating yourself up because of its existence, masking it with addictions or hiding from it.

I LOVE the part of The Shadow Effect movie where Debbie Ford talks about a time when she was speaking to a large audience and someone in the audience called her a bitch.  She understood after the initial shock of the comment at some level that WAS a part of who she was and where it fit into her life.  When it came to getting a contractor to finish work or times she needed to get stuff done – that shadow side HAD actually served her.  It is the same for me with my lack of patience.

I am NOT someone who considers myself “a leader” yet I have begun a few groups in my community and have run some big projects in the last 3 years – why?  Not because I am someone that loves or craves control – actually I enjoy when someone steps up and I can blend in and be part of the crowd. WHY I step forward MOST of the time is my impatience that anyone else will and that things are not moving fast enough for my shadow.  I figure if I wait around for someone else to do things it might never be done, I get impatient waiting for it to happen and I say, “Ok – I guess Ill run it then”. ;-)   There is a wonderful quote about a leader that I tell myself frequently, “A Leader is not someone that says, “Follow Me”, a Leader is someone who says, “I’ll go First”. I have no idea who said it but would love to give credit because BOY has it helped me! ;-) My impatience led me to take leadership roles with projects and groups that I never would have dreamed of wanting the responsibility for.  These projects and groups have brought many good friendships and SO MUCH joy into my life BUT would not have happened if not for my shadow. Your shadow DOES serve you and in unveiling it you can figure out how.

When you BEGIN TO DEFINE what your shadow is you can see how many things in your life relate to it.  My patience with my “wanting to get things done” leads me to constantly rearranging my schedule and “cutting things out of it”.  I KNOW life flows easier when I take time to meditate and practice belly dance and/or yoga daily. Yet there are times I let my impatience with how much more work I want to accomplish and my passion for my work influence the time I spend feeding my soul.  I was lucky enough to speak with Dr. Chopra on a call a few weeks ago and he once again gave me such wise words. (THANK YOU AGAIN DEEPAK!) I had asked him HOW he accomplished so much, saying, “I have so many loves, passions…” I thought, “how has this man written over 60 books, and seemingly appears everywhere (all over the world, online, TV AND in print, courses and phone calls) – surely he must have a clone or have mastered time/space”! ;-) I learned that Dr. Chopra has not missed a day of spending 2 hours in meditation/yoga practice in over 30 years.  He said it is “diligence” and I recognized that as “diligence for the soul”.  He feeds his soul daily so he is always “connected” and life flows.  I have been in this flow and I know when I take that time for myself that flow happens. Yet my shadow of impatience can STILL act up and say “what about THAT deadline?”, “You haven’t done half the things you had hoped to do this week”, and oh boy it goes on….. ;-)

Noticing how your shadow DOES serve you and how it tries to dis-empower you is VERY powerful.  When Deepak said those words I knew it was once again my shadow I was contending with and it almost seemed laughable to me, “Oh, THAT again – I can deal with YOU”. ;-)

The Shadow Effect now has a site where you can go and learn more.  If you go to their site and order their book you also receive many free gifts and an entry to win some amazing prizes. Debbie Ford offers a course through Hay House that takes you through the process of facing your inner shadow. The movie offers an expanded edition with exercises.  The best thing is this book doesn’t just give you a better look at yourself but a better understanding for others around you.  There is SUCH power in learning about our shadow and Debbie, Deepak and Marianne do a beautiful job in showing us to do just that.  You can also check their site to see when you can see them live speaking about this amazing book.

All of us have shadows and they are waiting for us to uncover them.  By knowing our shadow we become closer to knowing the complete us at soul level. Some people begin addictive behaviors to hide their shadows. We can try to “block them out” with drinking, drugs, over-eating and more.  In facing our shadow we can make peace with it, understand that part of ourselves and rejoice as we are free from it’s control and actually learn how it serves us.  We can begin to recognize it in different parts of our lives and make peace with it.  In consciousness, by recognizing our light and our shadows we can be empowered to heal our lives and become limitless. I hope you take some time to check out The Shadow Effect site and book .  As always comments are appreciated.  Have you discovered your shadow?  Have you learned anything from it? Sharing your message can help others to face their own shadows. Thank you for reading.

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