Community over everything.
When I made the decision to quit marketing earlier this month and focus all of my efforts on building out my coaching practice, I was forced to do something I’ve historically avoided.
I’ve had to lean into the communities I belong to.
Up until this year, I did whatever I could to maintain my independence. I worked long hours and hustled hard so that I only had to ask for help when things got really rough.
Relying on community meant showing up and getting vulnerable and that’s not something I was comfortable with.
While I had no problem wearing my heart on my sleeve, I also intentionally used social media—my go-to space for sharing—to curate my feelings. Comments on my posts were never full conversations and so I was able to hide in plain sight.
Then my current way of being made a last-ditch effort to disrupt the stability I was building in my body, finances, and life. I lit one final professional relationship on fire and found myself with the option of starting from scratch again.
This time needed to be different.
People who listen to me as I talk my way through what I am trying to figure out. People who offer whatever guidance, advice, and/or support they can. People who open up about their own struggles as well.
I know I’m making a new move because these past few weeks have been uncomfortable. My way of checking for community is shifting and I am overwhelmed by feelings of belonging.
I was only supposed to be passing through here. And while I have intentionally put effort into getting to know new people, I never intended to fall in love with the communities I found.
Despite my best efforts to maintain at least some distance, the humans I am spending time with are slipping through my defences. They are bringing out the best in me. They are making the financial, professional, and creative risks I’m taking feel less scary.
My challenges are still mine to navigate but now I feel so much less alone in that process.
I’ll be honest, I’ve been fighting these feelings of belonging. I’ve been looking for all the ways that things won’t work out. It’s only a matter of time before I get on a plane and disappear. I am a risk-taker and belonging feels too safe.
Or maybe letting ourselves belong and stick around for the long haul—and fall in love with the people right in front of us—is the riskiest thing we can do.
So, what kind of community are you longing to belong to?