By Robert Bly

A paperback reissue from the bestselling writer of "Iron John." A "penetrating and extraordinary little quantity that sheds new mild at the Shadow. . . . A clean and severe language and emblems for describing the unrevealed."--Joan Halifax, former president, The Ojai starting place

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Additional resources for A Little Book on the Human Shadow

Sample text

Later on, when I was married and just starting out, I compared myself to my father-in-law. He was an entirely self-made man who became very successful financially. He helped my wife and me out when we bought our first home. Whenever he would come over to visit, he’d stroll around our house as if he were the owner. Don’t get me wrong: I respected and learned a great deal from my father-in-law. But while he probably didn’t mean it, he subtly (and sometimes not so subtly) let me know I wasn’t measuring up to his achievements.

3) IT GETS BETTER To be seventy years young is sometimes far more cheerful and hopeful than to be forty years old. —Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr. A re there days you look around at your life, measure your reality against your expectations, sigh, and think to yourself, This is as good as it gets? It’s not; it gets better. Every life has a tipping point. ” Up until this point you’re hopeful, optimistic, and enthusiastic. You see your life as one of progress and improvement. Sure, you have setbacks in your career, but in general you’re climbing the ladder, boosting your income, growing your business, and/or improving your skills.

Whenever he would come over to visit, he’d stroll around our house as if he were the owner. Don’t get me wrong: I respected and learned a great deal from my father-in-law. But while he probably didn’t mean it, he subtly (and sometimes not so subtly) let me know I wasn’t measuring up to his achievements. My own comparison trap contributed to my becoming a workaholic and, in retrospect, not being there for my wife and children. When I was young I was too busy “climbing Mount Olympus” to be present emotionally for my family.

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