Have you ever thought about what your driving force is? What keeps you trying to get to that next level? What keeps you from letting go even when you know something no longer serves your highest vision for your life? What keeps you trying to do things as you think they should be done or to please others? The answer: your unclaimed shadows -- the negative thoughts, fears, beliefs that live in your unconscious and determine how much success, joy, fun, love or silent suffering you will experience or endure. Your shadow is responsible for the internal dialogue that plays as a tape in your head and constantly whispers in your ear: "Act that way so they will like you." "Don't do that or they will think you are stupid, selfish or lazy." "Just keep your mouth shut or stay under the radar so you won't feel embarrassed."

Ultimately it is the shadow that gives birth to our fear and keeps us paralyzed, striving for more, or trying to fit in or get it right. It is the shadow that controls our actions, non-actions and basically eliminates our ability to make high level choices. Let me say that again. Our shadows eliminate our ability to make high level choices! When we are being run by our shadows, we lose our freedom to choose - our only choice is to try to hide it, deny it or achieve over it. We lose our ability to make choices that truly serve us because the only choices we can make are those that are aligned with the shadow that is driving us. For example, if you have shame or a belief that you are not good enough, you will make choices to show the world how good or worthy you are. It won't matter whether those choices are really what you want to do or not. Think about it. How many of us have done things to make our parents proud, our spouses or children happy, or so our friends will need us, compliment us or affirm our value even when the actions are truly not in our best interest or what we want to do?

Your present is a result of the choices you made yesterday, and your future will be determined by the choices you make today. Given that, you must wake up to really see what is controlling your life. You are making thousands of choices each day about your life. You don't have to allow your shadow to be in control of your life. Instead, you can choose to shine the light on your darkness and get into the presence of your goals, dreams, and desires. You can choose to envision a new future and ensure that the choices you are making are moving you in the direction of your dreams.

Transformational Action Steps

(1) Make a list of two goals that you are committed to reaching.

(2) Ask yourself, "Are the choices I made this week moving me in the direction of these goals?"

(3) If not, identify the part of you that has been driving your decisions. Who is driving? Who is making the choices? Is it your wounded self? Is it the part of you that worries what your mother will think? Is it the part of you that wants to ensure your peers like you and approve of you? How long have they been in the driver's seat? And how much longer will you give them the wheel?

(4) Set a strong boundary with this part of you by letting them know that you are now taking control, that you are going to protect yourself, ensuring your future, and that they can no longer drive. In other words, revoke their driver's license. How? Write it down. Create a positive statement and put it up where you can see it daily.

(5) When we are driving, we have the ability to push on the gas pedal. Take one action this week that proves you are in the driver's seat.

(6) Sign up for Every Choice Matters, a life-altering course you can do from the comfort of your own home. In Every Choice Matters, you will be coached in a group setting to awaken to the power of the choices you are making in each and every area of your life. You will be guided to discover where your shadow is in control. By shedding light on what lies at the root of your choices, you will be able to make new choices -- choices that empower you, inspire you and deliver you an unimaginable future.

I can tell you that I have changed every single thing in my life. The transformation I've experienced is ultimately because of the choices I've made. This same transformation can be yours. I promise you that when you take this transformational journey, you will be able to powerfully use your voice and you will feel worthy of receiving all that the universe is waiting to deliver to you.

The time is now.

The choice is yours.

With love,

p.s. If you are interested in The Ford Institute's coaching training, Every Choice Matters is a required program and a great next step.