Open The Door
Now that the year is underway, how is it going? Have you been able to stay on track with your goals and vision for your life this year?
Sometimes it can be easy to step into a new commitment or change some old habit by having more structure, but other times, it can be a bit challenging.
Fear can get in the way (and often drive the ship) then suddenly we don’t feel like we’ve accomplished what we set out to do.
“The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek.” – Joseph Campbell
I love this quote so much. What this means to me is that if you don’t enter and move through whatever fear might be stopping you from doing something then that is an indication that a shadow part of you could be running the show.
"Shadow work" is considered one of the most powerful ways to uncover what is unconsciously driving your beliefs, actions and thoughts. Until we take a look at what might be stopping us from moving forward in our lives, these “parts” of us or these “shadow” parts of us will be in command.
There’s a wonderful movie that I watched recently called "Milton’s Secret" directed by a dear friend of mine, Barnet Bain. This movie has many messages, the main one being, the concept of how to move from a place of fear and view life from a different lens. It’s a great family film to watch with your kids as it’s centered around a twelve-year-old child and his grandfather’s influence on him. You can order it on Amazon Prime.
Fear can have many faces. It can be subtle, like you react to something that triggers you but you don’t know why; Or when you keep coming up against a block and just can’t seem to move past it, or when you might be sabotaging yourself in some way but you have no real conscious awareness about it.
There are clues to when fear or a part of your shadow are running the show.
If you continually find yourself feeling defensive about something; Like when you feel angry or agitated about something or when you have had a traumatic experience in you life and another part of you develops out of protection. These are just some examples of how to recognize that fear may be showing up in your life.
Signs to recognize if fear might be present:
If you feel something but just can’t quite shake it off
Reacting –vs- responding
Trying to accomplish the same task but it’s just too difficult
Feeling angry or defensive and you don’t know why
The first step is to become aware if you are feeling fear. Anyone can become aware of this emotion, even if they might not know what to do about it. And – there are many ways to get support and working on it.
I believe we are here to learn and grow and evolve. If we are not growing, then we are not living.
One of my favorite authors, Marianne Williamson wrote this inspirational poem in her book Return to Love. It was also quoted in Nelson Mandela’s Inaugural Speech in 1994. Here is the excerpt:
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear in that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our Light, not our Darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the World.
There is nothing enlightening about shrinking
so that other people won’t feel unsure around you.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone.
As we let our own Light shine,
we consciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others."
So when you are taking your monthly check of the resolutions you may have set for yourself, be honest with yourself as to how it’s going. There is no shame in that kind of honesty with yourself. Get support if you need to. There are many coaches, counselors and therapists out there to support you. Not to mention hundreds of books on shadow work and parts therapy.
Here’s to the month of love. Loving ourselves first and loving all of the parts that reside within our depth.
They all belong and once we can shine the light on them then they can’t hide anymore and their charge will dissipate. Embrace all the parts as they are there for a reason. Then, the flow will return and forward movement can take place. Goals can be accomplished but ask yourself if you aren’t checking off those boxes. If you aren’t, there may be some more digging around to get to the root cause of it.