First, did you learn your mental health was more important than you thought?
Maybe your “reserves” were not all they needed to be (financial, physical, emotional)?
Regretting “everyday” complaints about something you took for granted?
To be sure, there were beneficial lessons to be learned.
However, if you can’t find something to learn from, you’re probably still complaining, which you’ll need to stop doing in order to reflect on some takeaways.
The Power of Community
The most important lesson we took away from 2021 is the power (and necessity) of community.
We were forced to do a lot alone in 2020; and we are still doing most of those things alone in 2021. Gyms, schools, trips, grocery runs, parents, family, friends, and nights out…we even missed our dentist visits.
Second, our communities, or more importantly the people we surround ourselves with, are our lifelines. They provide friendship when we need it, a shoulder to cry on, a brain to bounce ideas off, a laugh to be had at the bar, help working through tough situations, people to push us towards our goals, people to hold us accountable, and people to help us heal.
As a result, we witnessed some amazing (and also tough) moments of community pulling together (or splitting apart), but in large part we spent a lot of time alone.
Doing all of these things alone isn’t just “not ideal,” it’s detrimental. We aren’t meant to be isolated and alone. We’re connected human beings. We like socializing, forming groups, sharing passions and sharing memories.
Choosing Your Community
Here are a few things to keep in mind when we’re picking those people who we want to surround ourselves with:
1. You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with, whether in-person or virtual.
Five is arbitrary, but your close circle of people says a lot about you and influences you at the same time.
2. Seek diversity, in all senses of the word.
Second, we like affirming our biases in life and associating with people who are like us. A bunch of “yes” people can help boost your confidence, but it also paints an inaccurate and incomplete picture of how and what you’re accomplishing. We forget there are other people with differing opinions with a different view of the world that come from a different place; seek out these differences and listen first.
3. Don’t be the smartest person in the room.
Next, if you’re the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room. Seeking growth does not come from mastery 100% of the time — it comes from learning to be a beginner and adding skills and perspective layer by layer. Always seek out a bigger/faster/stronger environment to learn in.
4. Never take your relationships for granted.
Relationships aren’t simply transactional; we don’t need to network our way to the top and always move on to the next best thing. Some relationships are there for life and will always be there for you if you take the time to cultivate them. It’s not about quantity, but quality.
We must age to learn this. Show up for people when they need you.
5. Tell your people you love them.
Last but not least, sometimes we don’t get another chance and people need to know how you feel about them. Don’t wait (shoot them a text right now as you’re reading this).
Above all, we at Live Better are on this pursuit to build the strongest, most encouraging, supportive, and active wellness community in the world. Always committed to be beginners in our learning and doers in our actions; “walk the talk” sounds more like “run the talk.”
We invite anyone in who wishes to be better, and ultimately to use that “better” to not only better themselves but the people and communities in their life and to change the world itself.