By Cherie Rowett for NOW Social Empowerment Collective
Thanks to those who connected in this morning for the NOW Social Empowerment online conversation about The Importance of Belonging. This unusual 8 weeks of pausing and staying at home prompted us to invite remote conversation – because NOW’s mission is to keep the conversation going for positive social change.
In conversation today we all came to see how we have gained from life at this time quite powerful insights into what belonging means and what it is we value about belonging and about community.
Our home spaces have become places where we connect for a lot longer with family members.
We have thus come face to face with the culture within our homes – and had to think a bit deeper about how we want it to be. We have had the opportunity to talk and listen to each other more and to be free of quite so much of the rush, rush, rush factor. And when we have caught up with frailer members of our family who may not live with us directly we have had the time to connect properly – and these moments of heart to heart connection have felt mutually important to help each other to get through.
We have also gained an appreciation of our connections with other friends and family and colleagues too outside our families – that rich network that brings further meaning, helps us cope, and rounds out our sense of identity and our companionship needs. We all feel gratitude for this age of technology that has allowed us to keep on connecting with these cherished people too during this time.
Conversational participants acknowledged that it has definitely been a time where we have learned that life can be simpler, we don’t have to keep on filling it up all the time with more and more things and with activities outside of the home to be able to be at peace.
In our isolation and distance from each other, it seems we have gained a deeper understanding of “community” too.
We have had a chance to feel the bones of what community is – we know first hand now what community sounds like, feels like and looks like, and we definitely understand the value that community brings into our lives. That is a wonderful appreciation to grow out of this time.
And the uncertainty of this time has also helped us to recognise our values and purpose at the heart of what we are each here to contribute. We have a sense of what it is we can’t live without creating and contributing and have had space and time to make that the priority.
The saving of time, that would usually be spent on travel outside the home, is supporting some helpful daily routines to take root too – such as starting each morning with meditation or starting to grow our own produce, or other such positive actions, indicating how we humans are purposeful adaptive creatures and as meaning makers, we have everything we need to keep a sense of belonging alive and well – even through such unusual times.
It was an encouraging conversation indeed. Viva la human spirit!
And we hope you can join us from where-ever you are in the world next Tuesday – 12th May – to discuss the topic of “Looking After Our Future”.
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