It’s all something we have wanted ever since we were a little child. To fit in, to belong to mother not father or vis versa. We as humans have a natural need to feel needed, wanted, loved, accepted. While we were younger we worked hard to fill that need. As we grew up, and hit high school age we still worked hard to fit in, but found it wasn’t that hard to make friends since there were so many different type of groups to belong to. Then we graduated, maybe went to college or started right off into the working world and realized life isn’t like highschool there are SO many more different type of people out there. Free thinking people that you actually think like and are able to have a real conversation with. Realizing that you were developing relationships with people that you shared actual interest in helped to make you not just feel belonged but needed at the same time. Friends would seek answers from you. You would reach out to them.
Then as you entered mid twenties you began to notice not just groups but communities. The neighborhood community, the gay community, the stay-at-home-mom community, each with their own set of rules, guidelines and dynamics one would have to maintain. Slip up and the whole community knows within a matter of minutes, even seconds thanks to our dear old friend social media.
So when looking at it in black and white, it seems that the idea of belonging does a full circle from working to fit in, to just fitting in, back to having to work to fit in. So do we really progress as we get older and act from what we learned or just use what we have learned and play high school as adults. After speaking with a close group of friends, that I like to call “the forum’ – we each have a different name for our daily chats on politics, sex, music, life ( ps – there may be a blog coming soon of the our topics ) we pretty much decided it doesn’t matter what these communities think of you. Yes, you do belong to that one maybe two communities, but you are what you bring to that community. Being confident and strong in yourself is what is going to help you within that community. You should want to belong to yourself before any others.
|I just couldn't resist|
After also reaching out for opinions from others ( thanks FB ) it helped me realize – remember that time we spoke of earlier, where we just made friends because we found people like us. Well they turned out to be the friends we will have for the longest, the ones from college, work, coffee shops.
Why – because these were the ones we actually had something in common with. Not the ones we met fighting over how the yard sale sign should read, not the ones we continue to find yourself hanging out with at the bar but the ones you created a relationship with. You both built a foundation on something solid. Let it rest there, and let it settle because those friends are the ones that will help keep you strong when the community begins to shift.