Gold in the shadows

The shadow originates in all the negative experiences a person has accumulated, and part of the task of becoming free is the retrieval of the banished shadow. There are many difficult riches trapped in the shadow side. [Carl] Jung said the shadow held 90 percent gold.*
(John O’Donohue)

Innovation, like evolution, is a process of constantly discovering ways of rearranging the world into forms that are unlikely to arise by chance – and that happens to be useful. The resulting entities are the opposite of entropy: they are more ordered, less random, than their ingredients were before.**
(Matt Ridley)

There is gold to be mined from our most difficult experiences.

It’s not bullion, but ore.

Innovation refines the ore into something not only precious but beautiful.

Story is innovation.

In story we are able to gather the most precious things of our lives and shape them into something more.

Even now, my most painful memories provide me with hope and motivation and even energy.

In her latest book, Bernadette Jiwa lists the four differences between a good and a great story:

  • A good story tells.
  • A great story engages.
  • A good story informs people.
  • A great story moves people.
  • A good story chronicles events.
  • A great story invests people in the outcome.
  • A good story changes how we think.
  • A great story changes how we feel and what we do.^

As the first reader or listener to our story: we must create a tale that engages us at the deepest levels of our being; that constantly moves or motivate us to keep growing; that includes a greater future purpose that is larger than ourselves; and, one that changes us deeply – DNA-deep.

Mining is difficult but the outcomes is worth it many times over.

*From John O’Donohue’s Divine Beauty;
**From Matt Ridley’s How Innovation Works;
^From Bernadette Jiwa’s What Great Storytellers Know.

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