The Importance of Community

Sometimes lacking something in life makes you realize its importance. Roughly 10 years ago I was very sick with several medical issues that left me homebound.

My friends didn’t understand the issues that I was facing and because I wasn’t able to go out and do fun things with them, they left me in a heartbeat. I have learned a whole lot about this situation in my life and also there is much to be thankful for in this life, including good health.

Human Needs

We all have a desire to feel loved and that we have a sense of belonging. When I went through this really tough time medically, it was an even bigger realization because it was then that I felt so alone.

Sometimes we don’t realize the importance of something until it’s gone. We know that as human beings we all need each other, but we don’t always realize the extent to which we do.

Stronger in Numbers

The phrases “stronger together” and “strength in numbers” are very valid. Community and teamwork can bring us so far. We can rely on other people to share the good and the bad.

It is the most amazing feeling to be a part of something, to have a sense of belonging, and to feel like no matter what, we have someone in our corner.

My Experience

I have lived in many different neighborhoods and only two stick out in my mind as having a great sense of community, including the neighborhood that I live in now. I know what it is like to live somewhere that makes you feel like it’s “every man for himself.” I know what it’s like to live in places where some people don’t smile or wave to acknowledge that you are there.

Thankfully, the community that I live in now is a phenomenal one! I certainly feel blessed with such wonderful neighbors who genuinely enjoy each other’s company.

I try to be involved in the community as much as possible, and not only my own. I love to donate to charity even if it’s only a dollar and to donate items to the less fortunate. I love to help my neighbors in any way that I can like helping them with yard work or bringing them food when they are sick. A community is there for its members.

Food for Thought

Many times in life, we feel as though we need to deal with hardships on our own. Maybe we don’t want to burden others, maybe we feel like we are strong enough to handle whatever life throws at us. Whatever the reason, many of us do not reach out and rely on others for help through hard times.

We enjoy helping and taking care of others, but we don’t allow help in return in many cases. If we can open up and share our burdens and what is on our minds and in our hearts, we can lessen the load and feel much lighter. It can feel like a weight has been lifted off of us. We are human beings, we need each other, and we need to be there for each other.

What Hurricane Season Has Taught Me About Life

Hurricane season is upon us, we are actually getting into the height of hurricane season. As I type this, Hurricane Ian is making its way up the coast.

I live several hours from the coast, and I’ve had my fair share of experiencing natural disasters. I have fortunately lived through hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding, and an earthquake. I count my blessings; Unfortunately, I know that not everyone is as lucky.

What I Realized

Experiencing hurricane season every year has made me think. This season can be applied to many parts of our lives.

Like life itself, a hurricane can change paths out of nowhere, it can quickly gain momentum, and in the blink of an eye, our whole world changes. The weather is unpredictable as is life itself.

We usually get a bit of a warning about a pending storm. We get the chance to bring in our belongings and make sure that we have candles, flashlights, and extra water within reach. We get a moment to prepare for chaos.

Weathering the Storm

Many things will be thrown at us in life, we must learn how to prepare, weather the storm, and pick up the aftermath.

Life often gives us a heads up that a challenge will be knocking on our doors. There might start to be layoffs at work, you might not be feeling well for a while, maybe you feel stretched thin, or you might be having relationship issues.

As time passes, we realize that we made it through, but not without a scratch or even possibly a scar. Sometimes our lives are turned upside down, then have to deal with the aftermath.

The Storminess of Life 

We will all have many storms in life. We will take time to prepare and make things right, but in the end, life is unpredictable, and it will take its course.

The storms in our lives are there to help make us. They may break us temporarily, but we will come out stronger in the end.

A Beautiful Reminder

Just like with hurricanes during this season, we may enter a rocky period in our lives. We may even lose everything that we have. One thing is for certain though, if we can make it out alive, we will be so much stronger.

The wind can come howling, the rain can pour, and the dark clouds can hang low, but once the storm is over, the sun will shine brightly and everything that once felt so dark will become light. Whatever season you are going through, keep going strong. You can do this; you can weather the storm!

You Are Not Stuck

Have you ever felt that you couldn’t change certain aspects of yourself no matter how hard you tried? Do you keep finding yourself in similar situations over and over again even though you promised yourself that you wouldn’t go down that road again? Sometimes we hit a roadblock in life and it feels like we are truly stuck, it feels like no matter how many moves we make it’s always the wrong one. I’m here to tell you some good news…you are not stuck!

People are generally creatures of habit, we like the same route to work, we keep a similar schedule every day, and habit is what makes us feel comfortable. What if however, our habits are what is holding us back, causing us unhappiness, or giving us a sense of failure. As hard as it can be, you have the power to break the habit, you have the ability to free yourself from being stuck in life, you have the tools to overcome any obstacle that stands in your way. In most cases, the only thing stopping you is yourself!

Often times we make a promise to ourselves to change, we might make a decision to eat better, to exercise, to devote more time to our families, or we may simply be working on a part of ourselves that no longer serves us in life. We may feel that certain situations in life may be preventing us from moving forward and living our true authentic self. No matter how stuck that you feel, there are ways to help you become a better version of yourself and ways to move past certain situations in your life. Sometimes the solution is just taking another step in a different direction, a sort of indirect move that will ultimately land you where you are destined to be.

So often we find ourselves saying that we cannot leave a relationship because we have been with our significant other for many years, we can’t change our job because we don’t know if we have the skills to perform at a job much different than the one have, we cannot stop certain behaviors that we possess even though we know they do not have a positive effect on our lives. Many times we feel stuck because we don’t know what to do, or we may know, but not have the push to actually follow through. As with many things in life, true change takes a lot of hard work and determination.

Part of trying to get through the feeling of being stuck in life is knowing that there will most likely be consequences and sacrifices, but keep your eye on what you are wanting in life, keep your eye on your hopes and dreams and know that if you truly want change in your life, you have the power to do so in some way, shape, or form. Imagine the feeling that you will have when you reach a goal, when you no longer live with the daily burden of feeling trapped. I hope that in some way this gives you a sense of motivation to keep pressing for all that you desire your life to be!

Find the Meaning

Have you ever got to thinking and realized that some situations keep arising in your life? Do you get upset or mad at yourself when you respond exactly the same way to life each time? Are you confused on why certain things don’t seem to stop repeating themselves over and over? Perhaps you may think you are doing something wrong, or that your life will never change, but it can and it will in time.

I am a firm believer that all situations in our lives, good or bad, were placed there to help us grow and become the best person we can possibly be. They were meant to teach us and make us stronger. I truly believe that each lesson is there and will result is greatness once mastered. Think of how amazing the feeling is when you conquer something, or you no longer struggle with something that has plagued you because you didn’t give up on finding a way to change and make it work.

Life can no doubt be very challenging, sometimes I let my struggles get the best of me. Lately I have been trying to challenge my thoughts by thinking of what I am meant to learn by my circumstances. What lesson is this situation, or person trying to teach me? Life is all about learning and pushing forward.

Fear

There are many things in life that we desire and want for ourselves and for our lives. We have a drive inside of us that pushes us to keep going and stay determined to reach whatever we are seeking. Sometimes a little doubt and fear creeps in and can throw us off track.

Think back to something that you really wanted. Think of how much drive and persistence you had while trying to reach that goal, or desire. There was probably not much that could stand in your way, you had your eye on the prize and pursued until you reached what you had sought.

Fear is an emotion that serves a purpose in an emergency situation, or as a warning etc., however it shouldn’t be an emotion that we feel constantly, or one that stops us from living out our daily lives. Anxiety is the base of fear and when we let those thoughts of fear and doubt creep in, we can destroy our happiness and our motivation. Whatever you want in life, go for it, don’t let anything stop you, and know that life will play out just as it should!