Week of January 28th

My Goal this Week: For this week, since I am writing this on Thursday night…is simply to write down the feelings and memories that I am holding onto in my heart with the family members I could not call last week for my goal. Once its all out, spend some time meditating and praying to see the situation differently and lean towards forgiveness.

My Experience this Week: Okay, its Wednesday, a little past Sunday…but I am trying! (OMG! I just heard my dads voice say “there is no try sweetheart, there is just “do”! – love you dad for always pushing me!!) So this last week I spent some time writing down my thoughts and feelings related to the family members that I tried to call during my goal 2 weeks ago but noticed I was avoiding it.

When I started this goal I thought it would actually be quick and fairly easy to write down how I felt but what I came to realize is that the hurt feelings I have been holding onto have become sort of the norm to carry with me and the idea that I was working at letting them go almost stopped me from writing. I felt like “if I go through this process and actually forgive past hurts, actions, or whatever then it would be like I was saying what they did or said was okay and I would be letting them off the hook”. WOW! Then it hit me. Do they even know they are “on the hook’? Or maybe they are feeling the same way about me? What if I hurt them too?

I am certainly not so naive that I believe I am totally innocent. But when I look back at those moments – I honestly remember feeling so let down, so disrespected and hurt that I came out fighting…kind of like my Dad…back me into a corner and look out! But does that make it ok? As I continued to write down my feelings I remembered this verse “For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins” Mathew 6:15-16 Ahhhhahhhh…and there it is. I realized that its not up to me to  worry about their journey, my only job is to follow mine. And I truly believe I am being called to forgive…and as soon as that came to me I expanded my goal (stretching my comfort zone yet again) and I started writing down ANY hurts or anger I was holding onto from any situation with anyone in my life. I couldn’t believe how long I wrote. I didn’t realize how many “little things” I was not letting go. So after many hours, many tears and much reflection, I have my pages of feelings/hurts to work on letting go…now the real work begins.

~ Hope you can Be Connected ~

– Victoria

Week of January 21st

My Goal this Week: This week I will call (not email, not text, not just think about, but actually CALL) three family members that I have not spoken to in awhile just to say hello, how are you and love you lots!

My Experience this Week: (Tues) Interesting start to my goal this week…it is clear that we have become a society that is technologically held hostage! I tried to call two family members that I have not actually spoken too in years and as it turns out I don’t even have their numbers…LOL! I have only been emailing or “face-booking” them…I actually had to send an email to get their numbers…that made me laugh. Which made me wonder if phone books are now obsolete? I don’t think we even have one…haha…I will keep trying to CALL. 🙂

FINAL: Okay, the final post for my experience this past week is a little overdue…I really have to work at scheduling time in my week to update this blog. The challenge I faced this week was an internal struggle. A struggle between reaching out with love or holding onto hurt feelings. The three people I had chosen to reach out to this week are people that would not be easy for me to talk to. Not only did I have to send emails to get their phone numbers but then the VERY little time I had to actually call was spent wondering what to say. Do I bring up the past with it’s hurts, disappointments and sadness or just say hello? Can I even put all those feelings behind me and reach out without expectation but only to reconnect? What if they don’t really want to talk to me? I had no idea when I set this goal how hard it would be. But I really wanted to “stretch” my comfort zone and not just reach out to family members that I talk to all the time. So needless to say, the week came and went quickly and I only made one call. But what I learned about myself this week is that I have to work on forgiving the other two family members for the past hurts. Because the only person that holding onto those feelings is hurting…is me!

~ Hoping you find a way to Be Connected~

Week of January 14th

My Goal this week: Look people in the eye as I walk by them, smile and say hello. We get in such a hurry that its easy to ignore those around us. We are all connected and you never know if your smile will make all the difference in their day…so this week I will connect with everyone I pass 🙂

My Experience this week: This goal was actually harder that I thought it would be. What is it inside us that encourages us to be loners? Maybe it’s just me? But I found myself just wanting to grab a quick burrito during my busy day and get back to work…as if saying hello would take too much time. But I did it!! I really tried to at least make eye contact and smile to everyone I passed. And I said “Good Morning” to almost everyone that made eye contact with me. But not everyone did. I really noticed how many people were busy on their phones or were staring at the ground as I would pass…almost afraid to be noticed. But I was determined. The response was amazing. People would smile back and say hi. Sometimes in total shock that a “stranger” just said hello. And I even challenged myself…I work in a downtown area and there were mornings that I would see someone digging in the trash bins for cans or bottles. I would normally just walk by…but not this week. I smiled and said “Good Morning”. Amazing!!! I felt uplifted immediately when I saw the look on his face. As if someone was acknowledging him as a person. He smiled back and said “Hi, cold morning” and I said “It sure is”. Words can not describe the look on this mans face. And there are no words to describe how I felt in sharing that moment with him. As I walked into my office building I found myself wanting to talk to him more. What was his story? Where was he from? By Wednesday I started feeling so good that I decided to extend this goal and really make an effort to CONNECT with people who help me in line at the grocery store, the restaurant, the bank and the gas station. I didn’t bombard people with endless chatter while they were working. But I made an effort to say hello and maybe say how busy they were or that I liked their hair style or that it was cold outside. Some people had negative responses but I just kept “connecting”. I was spreading smiles all over my little town and I was in a better mood too!! It seems being “nice” is infectious. That’s what this all boiled down to…just being “nice”. What if everyone started just being nice to each other?

~ Be connected ~