What Is the Shadow?
Our shadow, formed long ago, contains all the parts of ourselves that we have tried to hide or deny, the parts we believe are not acceptable to our family, friends and, most importantly, ourselves. It is made up of everything that annoys, horrifies or disgusts us about other people or about ourselves. It holds all that we try to hide from those we love and all that we don't want other people to think about us or find out about us. As the great Swiss psychologist C.G. Jung says, our shadow is the person we would rather not be.
From its invisible home deep within our psyche, the shadow wields enormous power over our life. It determines what we can and cannot do, what we will be irresistibly drawn toward, and what we will do almost anything to avoid. It dictates our attractions and our repulsions and determines what we will love and what we will judge and criticize. Our shadow controls how much success we're entitled to create or how much failure we're doomed to experience. The shadow is an oracle that predicts all of our behaviors, driving the way we treat those around us—and how we treat ourselves.
How you can benefit from understanding your shadow
When we make peace with our shadow, our lives transform. We no longer have to pretend to be someone we're not. We no longer have to prove we're good enough. We no longer have to live in fear. Instead, as we find the gifts of our shadow and revel in all the glory of our true self, we finally find the freedom to create the life we have always desired.
"The shadow is not a problem to be solved or an enemy to be conquered, but a fertile field to be cultivated. When we dig our hands into its rich soil, we will discover the potent seeds of the people we most desire to be."
— Debbie Ford from The Shadow Effect book
The Shadow Effect: A 6-Week Breakthrough Plan
Debbie Ford will guide you through a six-week breakthrough plan to help you understand your mysterious shadow, how it effects the key areas of your life and what it has to teach you about yourself so that you can finally create the life you've always wanted.
Explore More on the Shadow Now:
Can you identify the shadow working in your life? Take the quiz!
Watch Debbie explain what the shadow really is
Debbie Ford is the New York Times best-selling author of The Dark Side of the Light Chasers and The Secret of the Shadow. Her other national best-selling books include The 21-Day Consciousness Cleanse, The Right Questions, Spiritual Divorce and The Best Year of Your Life. She collaborated with Deepak Chopra and Marianne Williamson for their book, The Shadow Effect: Illuminating the Hidden Power of Your True Self (HarperOne). She is the founder of the Ford Institute for Transformational Training. Visit her online at DebbieFord.com.