Tina’s Revelation: Connection and Expectations
Wow. I hear Shrek saying, “Onions, donkey!”
We are like onions, constantly peeling back layers. More layers of awareness, more layers of potential growth.
On Sunday, an amazing coach (who happens to be the man I live with) invited me to close my eyes and imagine what it would feel like to connect with 100 people in 100 days.
Many thoughts and feelings ensued in a matter of seconds. I finally landed on excitement and possibility. I love how good I feel when I’ve connected with someone… it feeds my soul to know another soul, and I made a connection.
Then Neil asked if I’d be willing to actually connect with 100 people in real life, not just in my imagination… with the only condition being that I write about each and every experience.
I considered this. Would I be willing to go out and meet 100 people in 100 days and write about it? This seemed like a good way to get me re-engaging with people again (I’ve been cocooning for the last six months.) It doubled as a good way to get me writing again, too. (I haven’t been writing much in the last half year, either.) Writing usually brings me insight and awareness.
I went for a walk that very night and had a lovely connection with a young boy… and walked home smiling. (You can visit my blog at www.tinathrussell.com to read about that if you like.)
Then Monday morning hit.
I awoke feeling off and had a hard time applying myself to get anything done. Then I thought about how I still had to fit in going out to meet someone and create a connection… and it became another to do instead of an exciting possibility.
“What’s with that?” I wondered as I ate my lunch.
I suddenly remembered that I had posted a message on Facebook (FB) inviting people to tell me, in one word, how they first met me. Posting on FB is something else I haven’t done much of in the last 6 months, so I was excited when I checked notifications and saw a number of responses to my post.
I smiled as memories were brought forward through people’s shares, and I responded to each one. My heart grew lighter, and I felt a little more connected to these people that I hadn’t talked to in a long while (at least to the people who posted more than the requested one-word response).
Then I got back to thinking about my 100-day challenge… not wanting to go out in the smoke to create a connection with someone, even though it would be good for my soul.
Then it hit me… I hadn’t considered those Facebook interactions as real connections because… well, it doesn’t really matter why.
What matters is the revelation that I set up a bunch of parameters and expectations around what 100 connections would look like or mean. I judged what should count or not count as a connection. A FB share definitely didn’t fit into my judgement of what counted.
Yet when I thought about how the way the interactions on FB made me feel, I thought, “Oh! That’s the point of the connection exercise – to create the feeling! It doesn’t matter whether the interactions fit my pre-determined description of what connection is. As long as the feeling is generated, it counts!”
Have you ever done something like this? Pre-judged, pre-determined and then missed seeing the opportunity or the fullness of the experience you had because of those judgements?
I’d love it if you’d connect with me and share your experiences or thoughts and feelings about this idea. You can call me on my cell phone at 403-860-7311 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org