Is there someone you idolize or put on a pedestal? Someone who produces an emotional response in you because they’re so amazing? Someone you could spend all day watching or listening to?
That person holds one of the keys to your greater potential.
It’s very common for us to suppress our greatest characteristics. For example you may have a secret love of singing but you suppress it because someone once said your voice was no good. You may be deeply and emotionally touched when you see someone win a gold medal in the Olympics, because somewhere inside you is a winner who got buried years ago when you tried to fit in, make a good living to support your family and be what everyone else wanted you to be.
When you suppress your personal greatness it becomes what’s known as your “Golden Shadow.” It’s a key to an unexpressed aspect of your potential. When you have a lot of golden shadows you can feel you’re missing something all the time and you’ll be positively triggered by people who embody what you’re missing.
A useful exercise to uncover your golden shadow
- Reflect on someone you idolize or put on a pedestal.
- Ask yourself what you most love and admire in them. Sometimes it’s a quality of their character (e.g. their persistence) and sometimes it’s a skill or activity (e.g. their entrepreneurialism) and write a list of the key characteristics.
Whatever you’ve written down is an aspect of your potential. It’s an aspect of your personal greatness. You’re seeing it in the other person because you’ve buried it so deeply in yourself.
Essentially they are a reflection of who you really are. Your emotional response to them indicates the aspects you’ve suppressed.
Now it’s time to allow those aspects of yourself to be activated and grow.
- Make a personal commitment to yourself to allow each aspect of your greatness to develop fully from now on.
- Put yourself in the shoes of each of the people who represent your golden shadow. Feel what it’s like to have that quality or ability. Feel it as if it’s you.
- Now imagine you have that quality or ability. Feel it inside you. This will start to wake up the potential in you.