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My Story: Archetypal Themes, Plot Twists, and Becoming the Storyteller

Like many stories, my story has archetypal themes and plot twists that led me to my current story. When I was growing up, the steel industry seemed to define my hometown of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. My father worked in production planning and later, marketing, for U.S. Steel. As a teenager, I followed in his footsteps, taking various summer jobs in the plants. The practical side of me was prepari...

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After the Honeymoon: Idealization and Disillusionment

A while back, I read that the honeymoon phase of most relationships is about 16 months. In that first 16 months, the “other” is glorified, idealized, and thought to perfectly complement us. The “other” does not have to be a person. We can also glorify and idealize a new cause or  new passion, such as yoga, shamanism, qigong, or meditation. During this honeymoon phase, we feel we have foun...

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Bearing the Tension of Being Betwixt and Between

Often, when we are anxiously betwixt and between an old and a new way of being, we feel an inner urge to act quickly so as to dissipate the anxiety of waiting. Rather than taking action prematurely, we're usually better off bearing the tension of waiting until we gain clarity about what to do. Clarity can come through shamanic journey work, dreams, or flashes of insight that appear when we are qui...

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Your Ideals and Choices: Questioning Your Beliefs

Your ideas about right and wrong have immense influence over the decisions you make. But how deeply have you examined the foundational values by which you’re living your life? How can you discover what those values truly are? Questioning your beliefs could involve an exploration of how you would feel in hypothetical situations that pose painful ethical challenges. Although thinking about such si...

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