Journey to YOUR HeartLand:STORIES
Notes from Class One: Telling Your Story
Journey to YOUR HeartLand:STORIES
Class One: Telling the Story
presented by Regina Reiter
February 15, 2014
“Welcome to Journey to YOUR HeartLand: STORIES. I’m Regina Reiter, the developer and Chief Energy Organizer of Forgiveness Walks. This business is an outcome of my own journey through my stories and to my heart land, where I’m living more from my heart, walking into my dreams, loving myself fearlessly, and consequently being more able to love others and share what really matters.
I welcome you and honor your courage to join me in this journey. It takes courage to step outside yourself and look at what’s happening in your life because there’s always that possibility that you may think you have to change something! Well, first I want to assure you that in this class, I love you just the way you are and there’s nothing you need to change! Any change you make will be because you want to, not because you should!”
- Week One: Telling the story’
- Week Two: Feelings as a gateway to power
- Week Three: Flipping the switch to the energy drain
- Week Four: Inventing a New Story
Note: Since this is a “Journey”, the exact events that occur while we’re traveling through the general outline above will unfold in our own unique way. I’ll be guiding you through our ups and downs, ins and outs along our path together using this outline as our map, exploring and relishing the moments as they unfold.
Tell my story
As an example and model for what a Story might look like, here’s my story to get us started.
I’m 23 and I had just been hired as the Director of Outdoor Education at a beautiful camp in Southern Ohio. I was on top of the world, thinking, “This is just the job I want!” My dad had a different idea. He thought the job was great and all except for one thing. “That’s not a real job.” His words ran like poison through my brain and I replayed that statement over and over for decades. Here’s how it played out.
At 25-I was rescued from my predicament of not having a real job by a newspaper reporter who was infatuated with me – and I was infatuated with being adored. We got married and I quit that job in outdoor education (my passion) because my husband’s job was “better” — because it could “support a family.” We moved to a small city and I settled into remodeling our old house.
Tens years later, I’ve had three wonderful children, all born at home, and homeschooled. But, I still yearned for that camp community experience and working outdoors. I visited there often, and one September got offered a job for the fall season.
I was excited figuring out how I would actually do the job, getting child care at the camp and all that. But I stopped packing when when my husband said, “You can go take that job, but you’re not taking the children with you. I can’t go because I have to stay here and work to support the family.”
Fast forward to me at age 45 when I lost my first full-time job as a Waldorf school teacher where I believed I finally had a “real” job that could accommodate the outdoor learning skills I had honed decades earlier. It couldn’t, and my innovations were not supported by the administration.
So that’s the story I was living for decades: “What I really want to do is not a real job, so I’ll never be able to support myself, and just settle for being supported by a husband in an unfulfilling marriage and making the best of the situation.”
Fortunately, that’s not where my life story ends and with the help of my sister and Radical Forgiveness, I’ve transformed it, which is why I can be here with you today, taking a reverent look at Stories. But, that’s the VICTIM STORY I want to share as an example of what a story is, for the purposes of this class. I have plenty more, and even though I am now awake to the flow of stories and their power to distract me from my fulfilling desires AND provide information for conscious transformation, I still create Stories. It’s just that now I spend less time believing in their validity and can more often see their benefit for my growth and creativity. So, let’s move on!
So, what makes this a great Victim Story?
- There’s an initial wounding, a pain (“That’s not a real job”)
- I take it really personally and internalize the wound. Even though the initial wound doesn’t necessarily happen again (My dad only said that once, but I keep it running)
- It repeats itself noticeably and I believe that there’s no other way my life can be and I unconsciously start to make it look that way and see it everywhere in my life! So, it starts looking like The Truth.
- I’m oblivious, unconscious, to the story running my life, creating the drama of disappointment and unfulfillment.
An Acronym for S.T.O.R.Y.
Sustained Tale Of Repressed Yearning
A story is a Sustained Tale of Repressed Yearning. The yearning is often the opposite of what we’re expressing in our story. For example, my main “story” was that what I really wanted to be doing was not a real job. What I was yearning for was to live my passion of being outdoors and sharing that with others but my story kept me from doing that. I even married someone with whom I avoided that and continually sabotaged that – all unconsciously! Now, even though I am still walking into fulfillment of that dream, I am aware of the story and willing to keep challenging it as a conscious growth opportunity.
What being in a story looks like.
Here’s a journal entry that describes what my day looks like when I’m in a story.
I’m ignoring my hiking partner with whom I usually talk with pretty easily. I’m imagining what it will be like when we split up and he’s off hiking by himself and I’m going my own way, focusing on my business and on a new project that may develop here in Ohio. I’ll share more about that later, but it’s not so important right now. Anyway, I was really noticing how down in the dumps I was, how negative and really caught up in imagining the worst possible scenario. I was making up a depressing drama of breaking up, being alone, being all self-righteous and sure that I HAD to pursue things in my own way. I was being sarcastic and hardly talking at all.
My creative thoughts AND my energy were hiding. I wasn’t even enjoying the beautiful forest very much.
And that’s how I went to sleep. Gratitude? Forget it. My life just wasn’t working.
In the morning, I realized that I probably had a little more choice about this than I was allowing. I’m a Radical Forgiveness coach, after all. Shouldn’t I be able to shift this energy? I started to argue with myself, like Gollum in the Lord of the Rings.
“It’s all true, Precious. Don’t you know that no matter what, you’ll have to pursue your career on your own? Don’t you know that you can’t have a partner AND a career that you love? You can’t have both! Don’t you know that?”
“But it’s so sad that way! I can’t live that way! There’s no way out of this! Poor me!” etc.
And Now it’s YOUR Turn!
Let’s Journey together. I invite you to explore in your own life for your stories. Perhaps you’re already familiar with your story: your Sustained Tale of Repressed Yearning.
Maybe it’s a little more elusive. This week, I invite you to take a look at your stories. First, let me assure you that you don’t have to go digging up the past and rehash painful memories that give you nightmares. Be gentle on yourself here and just let the easy ones come up. The idea is to start practicing getting the stories out of yourself, not all bottled up and inaccessible.
Sound scary? Here are a few tips for doing this work play.
- LOVE and ACCEPT YOURSELF FEARLESSLY!
- LOVE and ACCEPT YOURSELF JUST AS YOU ARE!
- LOVE AND ACCEPT YOURSELF HAVING THIS STORY.
- MAYBE EVEN LOVE AND ACCEPT THE STORY.
What to do this week
Find examples in our own lives of when we’re in our story.
Refer to my stories posted in the Resources on our class page: https://forgivenesswalks.com/journey-to-your-heartland-stories-class-page/
The first week is all about telling the story.
Ways to get the story out/Expose the story
- Write it out longhand
- Keep a journal
- Send it by email (keep a copy for yourself!) to Regina at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Speak it using a recorder. Example: Easy Sound Recorder app for android phone
- Look outside yourself and listen to other people’s stories.
- Explore using a timeline of your life of when this story has occurred and note events that have helped build the story.
Remember and Practice: loving and accepting yourself being in your story,
just letting it be just as it is there’s nothing to fix or change or judge as right or wrong
How to listen to others’ stories
As you get more practice noticing stories, you may have people telling you theirs. Here’s a tip for healthy listening. No fixing! No advice! No judgment! Just listen!
Say: “I’m sorry that’s happened to you. Tell me more.”
Goals for this week: Tell the Story
1. Get the stories out
2. Have the stories witnessed and validated as a first step. (Send it by email to email@example.com)
3. Check the Class Page for the recording and suggested resources
Next week: Feelings as a gateway to power
The Radical Forgiveness Invocation
By Crow Dancing
May we all stand firm in the knowledge and comfort
That all things are now, have always been, and forever will be
In Divine Order
Unfolding according to a Divine Plan
And may we truly surrender to this truth
Whether we understand it or not
May we also ask for support in consciousness
In feeling our connection with the Divine part of us
With everyone and with everything
So that we can truly say and feel
We are One.