Do you ever think about the people in your tribe? Who are they? What do they mean to you and how often do you get to connect and I mean really connect with them?
Let’s revisit the definition of tribe for a moment. It’s a group of people who share values and ideas, who listen to and support each other. It’s a kinship. Being part of a tribe is primal. It forms part of our identity. It provides us with a sense of belonging which is critical to basic human functioning. Perhaps a modern take on the term ‘tribe’ is having access to and connecting with those people in your life who nurture you, who make you laugh, who inspire you and who accept you, warts and all! Take a minute- can you identify who these people are for you?
Tribes are dynamic- they change, it’s not humanely possible to hold onto all the friends we make in a lifetime! Our tribe members are congruent with our own journey. The people we move towards (or away from!) tend to reflect our values and priorities at any given time. Think about the people you gravitated towards in your teens, your twenties, thirties- were the colleagues on the work nights out replaced with the ‘parents at the school gate’ for much understanding and support?
If, fundamental to the tribe experience is connection then the challenge is finding the time! How often do you connect with members of your tribe? We all have so many commitments and ‘priorities’ – we can often mistake a ‘What’s App’ message for a connection. In an era where we have access to our virtual connections at the touch of a button, people have never felt so lonely or isolated. In fact, a recent article in the Independent revealed that social isolation is becoming an epidemic particularly amongst young people, newly retired and even creeping in to the lives of stay at home mums!
We are all driving in our own lanes, it’s important to come out of these every now and again as connecting with each other is a core part to our existence. As a working mum of 3 and a solo/mumpreneur, I’m learning that the people in my tribe are more important to me than ever. Finding those like- minded people who inspire me, understand and accept me for who I am is energizing! It’s invaluable to me and is nothing less than any of us deserve.
Last week, some great friends and I spent a night away together. This is really rare (like once a year rare!) Sometimes, it’s about making the the smaller moments count such as the odd lunch date, a walk or a catch up over dinner! The ladies and gents in my tribe have inspired this blog. Although we may not meet as often as I would like, enjoying some down time (when we can) with those that nurture me is a pure tonic and the benefits are far reaching…And I trust that they would say the same!
So put down the lap top, turn off the phone and arrange a meet-up with a fellow tribe member!
Gillian McGrath is a Cork based Life and Business Coach and Master Trainer. For more information, go to http://www.changegrowsucceed.com