Crawling Out of Your Own Shadow


The hardest thing for us to work with are potentials we lose to our own blind spots. As this series started with Seriously Folks, to be serious you have to filter things out. Just as a mirror helps us see ourself, it is the outside world that provides us with the feedback to see our shadows.

If you do not know why you are stuck, the world is constantly giving you feedback. Are you listening?


It is impossible to be shadow free due to the nature of attention and concepts in the human mind. It is currently a popular new-age thing to dig around in shadows. The majority is alot like helping you discover you bleed if you cut yourself. Working on someone elses shadows is only randomly helpful to you.

Since you will always have shadows, work on discovering those that are keeping you from where you want to go. To get a handle on this without working with someone, which requires much trust, try the following exercise.

Take a day and go about your normal business and be mindful of the things that annoy you. Just jot them down don’t try to analyse them. Do this commuting, at work, walking down the street and at home, if you forget, just start again. Things or interactions that annoy or make you uncomfortable are like fingers pointing at the shadows. Over time you will see trends and pick up clues.

If you want to really go right for it, consider the person that annoys you the most and ask yourself what it is you are afraid of that they represent. Just as an example:

In last weeks post Discernment, I laid out the Victim, Perpetrator, Rescuer triangle. I personally have a thing about being seen as a victim or a loser and those that take up that role really bug me. I did not know this for most of my corporate life and therefore took on the role of Perpetrator, the get it done at all costs guy, causing much unneccesary chaos by purging project teams of this traight.

May your life go well










Seriously Folks

I know there are a lot of serious people here. I admire your conviction and am saddened for your loss. Being serious requires focus, which means filtering out the noise. What are the noises in your life?

You can certainly list the noises you currently rub up against. However, too many times we label something noise, filter it out and then never re-examine our choice. What are the filters you inherited and have never, ever examined? What are the filters you have constructed and have never re-examined? Do these filters still serve you?

It hurts to see people serious themselves out on to the end of the branch until it breaks. I’ve known too many people serious about their careers right up to the day they are let go, get cancer, get indicted or I send their spouse flowers.

More often, I talk with those who know they are hanging out on a branch, knowing how it will end and not able to see a way to avoid it.

Think of life like a set of those horizontal ladder bars on the playground and your stopped half way. The first step to getting across is to start swinging until you can reach out and grab the next rung. What is it that you would reach for?

Usually by the time we are in conversation, you aren’t just hanging there you are squirming, kicking and losing your grip. It is hard to find the rhythm of swinging while this is going on, so the first step is to settle down, quiet down.

So take a day, half day, an hour or even 15 minutes. Take a walk, a hike, a drive, get coffee, go fishing and ask your ‘serious self’ the questions in this post. There is no need to decide what the answers mean, jump to conclusions or take action.

Repeat this a few times and themes of what is brewing inside will emerge. These aspects of you have no room in the serious self you’ve created. Identifying theses aspects is the beginning of working through the status quo and finding a new rhythm.

May your life go well.