Why We Need Community to Thrive Today I want to talk about embracing community. Why is it so important to have our people? I’m going to break down the meaning and benefits of community, and why we need it to thrive. Let’s start by defining it. What is Community? Community can be described in many ways. My first thought, is of coming together with common mind and purpose. Unity is right in the word, hinting at that spirit of togetherness. What I love about this idea of community, is that it isn’t only specific to where you live, or your culture, or what you believe. Community can simply be people who have claimed each other. You belong to me, and I belong to you. That’s it. When you belong to a group of people that means something, there is a certain weight that comes with that, and the benefits of being part of a community are what we are going to dive into today. why we need community to thrive The Benefits of Community Though communities can take on many different outward appearances from cross fit clubs to prayer groups, they all have one thing in common: belonging. A sense of belonging may be the most searched after thing in life today. Everyone wants to feel like they have a place, and that is exactly what community gives. Feeling welcomed is more important that the actual purpose of the group’s gathering. If a group is getting together for book club, it isn’t the actual book that makes the gathering meaningful, it’s the sense of wholeness created when people really care about each other. When we feel seen and heard, we not only feel like we belong, but our overall feeling about life improves. This is good news. This means that someone who would otherwise feel down and depressed, could feel completely the opposite just by being part of a community. And that’s not all… There’s more reasons why we need a community to thrive. Being part of a community means you have access to talents and resources outside of yourself. Have you thought of this perk of being part of a community? The relationships created allow for this symbiotic nature. What’s mine is yours, and what I can’t do maybe you can. This element can be lived out beautifully in communities. The more people share of their talents and resources, the more willing to share others become. It creates a cycle of sharing for everyone, and reinforces those feelings of belonging. This builds confidence for the individual and added confidence in the group. we need community to thrive Communities are also known for the “strength in numbers” aspect. When the voices of many become one, that voice is more powerful. Standing together, always beats standing alone. What are the problems of being without community? You may be aware that loneliness and isolation lead to an array of serious health problems, both physically and mentally. Being without community leaves room for these possibilities to put people in real danger. Without community, when a problem arises, you have only yourself. The weight of life has the tendency to become to heavy to hold alone. We weren’t meant to be without community. We need each other to help carry that weight. Without community, you will struggle with belonging, wellness, and to put it simply, life in general. This might sound extreme, but I think we’ve all had enough taste of isolation to know that going it alone is not the best way. As an introvert, and type six on the enneagram, I don’t mind having some time and space for myself. In fact, many days I crave it. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want to be in community. I am a part of a few community groups, and life without them would be torture. They lift me up when I’m feeling down, they make me feel like I have a place in the world no matter what. They share their resources, time, and talents. And together, we experience the best of parts of life. What do you do if you don’t have a community? Start where you are. It’s easier to look at your life and see what is already in place around you, instead of getting overwhelmed by searching out a bunch of communities to join. Look at your schedule. What are you already doing? Do you go to a gym a few times a week? Do you take walks in your neighborhood? What are your hobbies and interests that you are already pursuing? You will be more likely to be in community with others if you can simply add to what you are already doing. Make an effort to invite a friend or two on your daily walk, or meet up with people after your workout at your local coffee shop. Keep doing what you already love, just choose one thing to do with others. If you are feeling more ambitious, maybe you can start your own community group. Are the type who loves planning or hosting? You could start your own club based on your interests. Maybe you all go hiking twice a month, or play cards, or get together to share stories you’ve written for fun. However you choose to include yourself in community, know that everyone is benefitting. Now you know why we need community to thrive, and that it’s the very best way to live! I hope this post has brought you encouragement and inspiration for your day! What other benefits can you think of that come from being part of a community?