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Stepping Out of the Shadows/[Re]Connecting With
Your Life's Journey

2002 Alive And Well Publications. All Rights Reserved.
Commercial use of this material is prohibited

By Dr. Steve Frisch, Psy.D.

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Let’s Start at the Very Beginning ...

If he [the teacher] is indeed wise, he does not bid you enter the house of his wisdom, but rather leads you to the threshold of your own.
-Kahil Gibran

Our most profound existential urge is to grow and evolve. We all are moved by our inner quest to find meaning, to create a sense of orientation in the universe. I can’t think of anybody who isn’t hungering for a deeper sense of purpose in their lives, a deeper connection to the underlying forces of life.

The path we follow to quench our thirst for meaning and growth is a process of growth fraught with challenging milestones along the way. Each step of the process presents us with different obstacles from which valuable lessons can be learned about ourselves. These lessons are the source from which enlightenment sheds its brilliance on our path, enabling us to find our way out of the darkness of the shadows and discovering the means by which we can [re]connect to our life’s journey.

I have written this book to assist you in your own searching. Included in Stepping Out of the Shadows are the lessons I have discovered in my own searching as well those I have learned from guiding others on their own personal journey.

But more than just a guide for your journey, this book is a special invitation. An invitation to shrink your ego and expand your soul. An invitation to explore and discover. To create a personal blueprint for your emotional and spiritual well-being. A blueprint that will reveal to you the path to a life of emotional richness and well-being.

Come explore within yourself. Explore the festering wounds that hold you back, that tend to appear in your life in ways that limit you. Wounds that never seemingly heal. Wounds that leave you feeling estranged from yourself, the people in your life, and the purpose your life serves.

Throughout the years, it has been my privilege to share this journey with people just like you. We’ve touched the depth of despair as well as ascended unimaginable heights. Through my own journey, as well as my work with others, I have learned much. One thing I have discovered is that in order to step out of the shadows so that we may [re]connect with our life’s journey, we all will inevitably encounter a series of passageways as we follow our evolutionary path of growth and becoming.

This book is my attempt at presenting to you what  process we follow as we step out of the shadows.  Because the telling of a story is only two dimensional while our lives are three-dimensional, it’s impossible to capture the true interrelated nature of these passageways. Although I present each passageway of the process in a particular order, you will encounter them in your life in a continually evolving, ever-changing interdependent fashion. 

I’ve divided this book into eight sections. The first section will provide you with an overview of the journey that lies ahead. Following the first section, I present to you each of the seven passageways we will walk through together on this very special journey.

Each section of the book is intended to serve as a mirror for you to look into--an opportunity to find yourself in each stage of transformation. For many of you, a specific section may serve as a rearview mirror. You may discover that you have already walked the walk of a certain section. Use such a section as a way of measuring how far you have already come, as well as reflect upon what the lessons of that process were for you. For others, each section will serve as a beacon of light, shedding a bright ray of hope where now there is only darkness.

I have included in each section what I call Pathfinder’s Tips. These tips will enable you to either begin or to continue your very personal work. Beyond providing you with specific tools to enhance your journey, there are exercises throughout the book that will enable you to more personally explore the material covered.

What follows is a short overview of the sections contained in the book.

Awakening the Soul focuses on the toxic influences that deaden the soul as well as the means to awaken what we have buried so deep within ourselves that we have lost touch with those parts of ourselves.

Liberating the Spirit explores how we bind our spirit in such a fashion that our lives become emotionally and spiritually dead. In this section, we examine what our spirit is and how we can set our spirit free.

Illuminating the Path provides a direction for us to focus our efforts on. Once our soul has awakened and our spirit has been liberated, this section will provide a means for self-examination in order that we can create the necessary focus for our journey.

Transforming the Mindset is an important section for anyone who is seeking to unlock the prison that their mind creates for themselves. We explore how to free ourselves from the prison of inflexible thinking as well as create the joy we might experience from living a life grounded in the here-and-now.

Healing Your Wounds paints a picture of ways we can change the relationship we have with ourselves. The very quality of this relationship we have with ourselves is very much connected to the depth of well-being we experience in our lives.

Strengthening the Bonds of Fellowship focuses on our need to connect to the people who matter most to us in a very special way. We will discover how our relationships are the most important antidote for a spirit that has been ravaged by loneliness and alienation.

Rhythm of Life enables us to put into perspective what our journey can be like, as well as some specific pointers that we all need to bear in mind as we stay involved with our personal growth.

The journey you and I are about to embark upon is unique--unique because no two people will experience the material in this book the same way. No two people will find the same material equally important or irrelevant.

Just one word of caution as you begin. There’s nothing here that needs to be learned. But there’s much here for you to experience so that you may learn. Do the best you can to patiently work with the material that is presented to you. My only intention in writing this book is to light a thousand small fires to illuminate your path as you step out of the shadows and [re]connect to your life’s journey.



Dr. Steve Frisch, Psy.D. is a clinical psychologist in private practice in
Chicago, Illinois and Northfield, Illinois.

You can contact Dr. Frisch, Psy.D. at drfrisch@aliveandwellnews.com  or at
(847) 604-3290.

Recover from chemical dependency and its toxic impact on family members. Raise your children to choose to be alcohol and other drugs free. Learn how to in Dr. Frisch’s, Psy.D. Recovery book series.


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