Debbie Ford and Embracing the Shadow Self

Debbie Ford was the bestselling author of self improvement books for people struggling with addiction or other life problems.

Her work is based upon merging the shadow self, or dark side, with the light side, so wholeness and authentic living results.

Her book, "The Dark Side of the Light Chasers" was number one on the New York Times bestseller list.

About Debbie Ford

Debbie Ford has stated in interviews that she grew up as a very insecure child. She eventually developed a dependency on drugs and was an addict for 15 years.

During her drug counseling group sessions, she realized she had an ability to see the good in people they couldn't see themselves. While listening to their stories, she realized most people had self limiting and negative beliefs about themselves, while she saw the opposite in them. That realization helped her with her own healing and led to her healing others.

Debbie Ford's books teaches it isn't necessary to focus on changing the things we don't like. Instead, we should embrace the negative and learn to love ourselves as we are. She teaches the concept of the shadow self or the dark side and explains that people tend to criticize and agonize over their dark natures. The shadow self shows though in every day situations such as an addiction compulsion, being short tempered, or through self-sabotage. Ford urged her students to recognize their shadow self and treat it with compassion and love.

Debbie Ford wrote eight best selling self improvement books on the subject of healing through embracing the shadow self. She was a popular speaker at conferences and was on the staff of the Chopra Center for Wellbeing. She also hold numerous workshops and retreats. Ford believed one of her greatest gifts was her ability to work with groups of people and bring about individual healings.

Debbie Ford died February 17, 2013.

Books by Debbie Ford

• "The Dark Side of the Light Chasers" was the first book released by Debbie Ford. It was published in 1999 and is now available as an ebook, book, and audio book. This book thrust Ford into the limelight as it became a bestseller. In this book, Ford explains that everyone has the capacity for every human emotion. The dark emotions are often buried, but they still affect our lives. Ford teaches readers how to recognize the hidden emotions and discover what they can teach us. Ford further explains that only by embracing our shadowy natures will we become whole and lead authentic lives.

• "The Secret of the Shadow: The Power of Owning Your Story" was published in 2002 and is available as an audio book, ebook, and book. In this book, Debbie Ford offers self improvement advice to readers who conceal their painful secrets. She teaches we are a culmination of our formative experiences, and even the painful ones played a part in what we can contribute to the world. Ford urges readers to go beyond reliving the good memories and come to peace with the painful ones, so rather than causing pain, they can teach us valuable lessons on life.

• "The Right Questions: Ten Essential Questions To Guide You To An Extraordinary Life" is a book, ebook, and audio book that was published in 2004. In this work, Debbie Ford explains the reality we experience today is the result of our long term thinking. The ten questions she provides in her book helps readers discover the motivation behind their thoughts so they can regain control and harness their thoughts to create a more desirable future.

• "The Answers are Within You: Unveiling Life's Greatest Spiritual Secrets in the Shadow of Your Soul" is an audio book that was published in 2004. In this work, Debbie Ford helps listeners get in touch with their divine purpose. She explains how we create stories about ourselves that are based upon limiting beliefs. She shows how these stories get created, how to stop the negative thoughts, overcome destructive behaviors, and get free from limited thinking.

• "The Best Year of Your Life: Dream It, Plan It, Live It" is a book and ebook that was published in 2005. This book urges readers not to give up on their resolutions to create a better life. Debbie Ford offers self help advice in this book in the form of various activities such as writing affirmations and inquiry. She explains it is possible to get what you want as long as you keep your mind focused on the goal. The book contains inspirational stories from her clients and her own experiences.

• "Spiritual Divorce: Divorce as a Catalyst for an Extraordinary Life" was published in 2006 and is a book and ebook. This work deals with the pain of divorce. As in the other books by Debbie Ford, she urges readers to connect with the dark thoughts and emotions that arise during a divorce and use them to deepen spiritual understanding. She offers readers seven laws such as The Law of Responsibility, and The Law of Acceptance. The laws help readers cope with the emotional whirlwind that accompanies a divorce. At the end of each chapter, Ford offers practical steps she calls Healing Action Steps, that are actual techniques readers can use to work through their pain and be a better person afterwards.

• "Why Good People Do Bad Things: How to Stop Being Your Own Worst Enemy" is a book, ebook, and audio book that was published in 2009. This book teaches readers how to lead lives filled with purpose, meaning, and passion. Debbie Ford offers readers self improvement advice and the tools needed to overcome self-sabotage and confront the shadow self. Once the split between our light and dark selves is healed, we can live more authentic lives.

• "The Shadow Effect: Illuminating the Hidden Power of Your True Self" was published in 2010 and is a book, audio book, and ebook. Debbie Ford wrote this work in collaboration with Marianne Williamson and Deepak Chopra. They explain the shadow self is the ego, or lower self, and it often remains hidden and ignored. By doing that, it is allowed to run its destructive course. The authors teach it is important to fully embrace our shadow natures so we can understand ourselves better, overcome destructive habits, and live more joyful lives.

• "The 21-Day Consciousness Cleanse: A Breakthrough Program for Connecting with Your Soul's Deepest Purpose" is a book and ebook that was published in 2011. As the title implies, Debbie Ford presents readers with a 21 day program for letting go of the past, embracing the present, and creating the best future. The 21 day program helps readers let go of destructive behavior and negative thinking so they can experience deep peace and joy.

• "Courage: Overcoming Fear and Igniting Self-Confidence" was published in 2012 and is a book and ebook. In this book, Debbie Ford teaches readers how to overcome fear and insecurity. She explains these emotions cause feelings of helplessness and powerlessness. This causes disharmony and stagnation. Like her previous books, this one helps readers overcome their emotional baggage so they can lead more joyful lives. Ford introduces seven guiding principles that will lead to emotional courage and wholeness.

Learning More from Debbie Ford

Ford explains to readers of her many self improvement books the techniques needed to integrate their light and dark sides. She also offered various classes to help facilitate the process. Some of the classes are available to take online. The online classes are based upon her books and include the following:

• The Courage Club
• Overcoming Fear
• Overcoming Self-Sabotage
• The Consciousness Cleanse
• The Best Year Of Your Life
• The Shadow Effect

The online classes typically last a few weeks with a lesson delivered daily or once every few days.

Debbie Ford also hosted multi-day retreats and workshops such as the Shadow Process Retreat, the Shadow Experience workshop, and the ten day Courage Cruise. Ford also provides free audio affirmations and prayers on her website.

Debbie Ford founded The Ford Institute for Transformational Training in 2000. The Ford Institute trains coaches and offers coaching sessions, classes, and workshops that help people become fully integrated. The coaching can be done in person or by phone.

Debbie Ford has helped thousands of people live fuller, happier lives through her self improvement books and classes. She did this by helping people see the best in themselves, just as she sees them.

Ford is one of the more popular personal development authors and has collaborated with some of the biggest names in the self help field such as Deepak Chopra, Wayne Dyer, and Marianne Williamson. She found the secret to her own life healing and made it her mission to share what she learned with as many people as possible.


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