A wholesome self-care practice encompasses aspects that address our mental, physical, emotional, and psychological well being.
One of the key components to build this that impacts all of these areas is maintaining and developing strong community
connections to create a sense of belonging and to nurture our health. Communities are spaces where the people in our lives congregate; our families, our co-workers, our neighbours, our friends, hanging out together for a common purpose. A community provides countless opportunities for growth and experience.
When we truly understand and feel a sense of belonging to the communities we are part
of, our sense of connecting and relating to our world, to our own self and others increases and we feel supported, and less alone. The word community itself holds the answer to the benefits of being part of a community – “common” – “unity “,united by
what we share with one another.
Our shared threads allow us to come together,
advocate for one another and support one another in meaningful ways. When we have
a higher degree of connection to our environment and to the people in our lives we
become better stewards of the earth, each other, and ourselves. We cannot connect in meaningful ways with others unless we connect in meaningful authentic ways with our own self. To develop this internal knowledge, we need to learn to listen from our heart rather than our head. We can develop this by incorporating a meditation and mindfulness practice in our daily routine, spending time in quiet
reflection to tune into hearts whispers more.
Listening with our hearts to others enables us to be present while we spend time
together and share our stories and experiences. This is important as it helps create a
sense of connection and community because when we feel heard, really heard, by
another and it deepens our level of trust, empathy and closeness with others.
When we tune in to our internal compass, this provides us with a sense of who we are and what we stand for in our core. This then allows us to better navigate our external affiliations and alliances in an empowering way, making us more empathetic and evoking a greater level of compassion.
Feeling connected to community creates resilience as it decreases our sense of
isolation; decreases loneliness and increases our sense of security, health and
contentment. It is important to seek out and identify what groups or activities you can
join and participate in to feel a part of a community.
Through our connectedness to others, we get to enhance ourselves and through
working on ourselves we begin to enhance our connection to others. It is a win win!
When we have a community we are part of and nurtured by, we feel safe and secure
and can find comfort and refuge during difficult times. We are hard wired with a need
and desire to belong and be a part of something. Our need to belong is a basic human
emotional need. We are designed to want to affiliate with others and be accepted by
others. We live, grow and flourish in fellowship with one another.
As the Greek philosopher
Aristotle observed, “Man is a social animal”. We live, grow and flourish in fellowship with one another. The benefits of being connected to a community include:
- Making a positive impact on our mental and emotional wellbeing
- Creating a sense of belonging and social connectedness
- Adding meaning to our lives
- Improving our self-worth and adds spice and enjoyment to our lives
- Supporting stronger immune system
- Lowering risks of dementia
- Helping us to gain knowledge and insights through sharing with others.
Here at Joshua Creek Heritage Arts Centre our programs and events are an opportunity
for you to experience a sense of belonging and community. Check out our website.
– Susan Ksiezopolski