Can you relate to this story? Can you think of a time in your life that you had your heart set on something you REALLY, REALLY wanted, to have that dream shattered because you didn't make the team, or the grade?
Brown goes on to say the absolutely worst part about her experience was that her parents didn't say a word when they drove home. They didn't comfort her or say she was courageous for trying; they all rode home in silence. What she really wanted was for her parents to say how terrible it was and that she deserved to be picked. This was a defining moment in her life; she felt she didn't belong anywhere, even in her own family. Dr. Brown says that the quest for belonging is a primal need for us as human beings, and our family is the most important sense of belonging we need. She explores how we can love ourselves, with vulnerability and honesty, even in the face of injustice and pain, and find our true sense of belonging.
Here are a few questions I'm taking away from this powerful story:
A second question is how can we love ourselves? For many of us, it's a lifelong journey. Here's what I know about that: The Virtues are at our core. They define who we truly are. I know now, after many years of exploration, trial and error, experiences and reflection, that the virtues are who I am. I cannot love myself unless I know I possess these qualities. Some of my virtues are strong, ones I've always had in the forefront from childhood, like friendliness, caring, and enthusiasm. Others are ones I am continually challenged by, such as orderliness, patience and acceptance. I always have room to grow and develop these virtues more. Perfection is not an option, but growth is!
So when I read about the virtue of love in the card above, I know for love to occur, there needs to be acceptance, and courage, and commitment, and openness, and trust and justice, and more. We can stand on our holy ground, and say, "This is who I am, a person of virtue." The challenge is to live that way, to look at what we're doing every day. Are we being honest, caring, courageous, open, and trusting? And if not, what do we need to do to be that way?
Questions for reflection:
1. How do I show love to my family members?
2. How do I connect deeply with myself and others?
3. How do I show love for myself?
4. How do I stand on my own holy ground?
ONLINE COURSE: Introduction to The Virtues Project:
Awakening the Gifts of Character
Where: Your home or office
When: Anytime-at your convenience
What: A self-directed online course. All you need is a computer and internet.
Master Facilitators: Heather Acres & Betsy Lydle Smith
REGISTRATION & DETAILS: http://www.virtuestraining.com/intro-to-tvp-online-course.html Sign up NOW!
"Every aspect of this online course was a part of this life-changing experience for me and other people in my life, and for this I am very grateful. It has been a magic journey, with tears and most marvelous discoveries. Letting go the pains of the past and opening up for today and the future, re-finding a meaning and a purpose for my life. Discovering a new me. I would give this course a 10 out of 10!
– L.M., Australia
Virtues Reflection Cards, The Family Virtues Cards, and Virtues Project Educator's Cards are now available as a NEW APP through ITunes and Play Store. Thank you, Dara Feldman, for your love, commitment and service in creating these apps.
Virtues Reflection Card of Love, by Linda Kavelin-Popov, used with permission from TheVirtues Project™