From the UK, I often get asked where do I call home, and I usually flippantly reply wherever I am not. So when in NZ I call UK home, and when in UK I call NZ home, but with that there has always been a thought running, as to where do I actually belong?
In a previous blog, found here, I speak of how sometimes we can find belonging in the most unexpected places, and sometimes we can not feel a sense of belonging in places that are really familiar to us, and where we would expect to feel that sense of connection and being part of something.
I often hear this come up in conversations and coaching sessions, "Liz, I don't know where I belong," "I don't feel I fit in anywhere." I can totally empathise and as I mentioned it has always been a thought running for me, where do I actually belong.
I think there is a difference between fitting in and belonging. For me I see that with fitting in, there is an expectation we put on ourselves to change in order to fit in and be part of something. I see belonging as somewhere we can be and feel a part of simply by being ourselves.
Connection for me is really important, and it is often said that as a society we are more connected than ever, but more disconnected than ever. That battle between devices and technology and genuine connection. With less of the heart to heart connection going on, we can easily become isolated and it feel very hard to feel that sense of belonging to anything, anyone or anywhere.
But I do feel times are changing, I see more groups popping up to get people reconnected again, people are turning towards faith or spirituality to find some of that sense of belonging or connection. Sometimes its just being out and about where other people are, a cafe, a library, a church, to be amongst people, even if we are not necessarily talking with them.
It can be easy to try a group once, and decide its not for us, but I would recommend giving it a go a couple of times at least, unless something really doesn't resonate. Being curious is really key here, hunting out different groups, different activities, different places, seeing what is out there and look at it as an adventure in finding some places where you feel that sense of connection, feeling like you are part of something. More to follow on this next week....
Liz our Life Coach