The Importance of Community
The older we get, the more we tend to value community. However for the longest time it was not a high priority in my life. It wasn’t until I had graduated college, gotten married and moved to a new city that I realized how much I longed for a core group of men and women that I could share life with. People that: I could have over to my home to enjoy a meal, laugh and cry with; as well as people who would be honest with me and encourage me to be the best version of myself. It took several months before I was able to find that sense of community in a group of women at a local interior design firm. Even though I was kind of a wreck, these women took me in and provided me with a safe space to be and to heal. They were kind and yet they pushed me, they taught me about marriage, children, cooking, business and faith. Through them, I began to familiarize myself with area and continued to make new friends. It was through their hospitality and love, that began to see how important community was and how much I had always longed for it.
Whether it’s through family or friends, we can all find and foster community wherever we are at. As was the case with me, creating community can take some time and putting yourself out there. It can feel a little awkward and hard but the end result is so worth it. Along the way, you will begin to find out some things such as:
You realize that your not the only one
There is nothing more freeing than realizing that you are not the only one going through x, y and z. Something that you’ll find when you start to embrace community is that we are going through similar things and can very often say “me too”.
Your work is better because of it
Something that I learned while working at the interior design firm is that your work will always be better when it is done in community. You can come up with a beautiful design for your client on your own but what will really take it to the next level is when you have a group of peers offering their perspective and voice.
Community is good for the soul
Simply put, community is good for the soul. As my friend Rachel King put it, “We are meant to live in community! Surrounding yourself with like-minded people who bring genuine encouragement and accountability to your life becomes a greenhouse for personal growth.” There is nothing better than finding and fostering a sense of community with a group of men and women; who you can feel safe with and supported by - a group of people that you can laugh with and cry with, and share life together.