5 Core Benefits of Community
Community is essential to the human experience. We are social beings with an innate yearning to connect with and support one another. The recent floods in Western North Carolina reminded us what it means to be part of a true community. The minute the waters receded, folks of all ages and walks of life showed up to offer a genuine smile and a helping hand. When considering community as a concept, studies show it offers a number of benefits.
Connection/Engagement: Think about how many friends and relationships you have from your various communities. Whether it’s work, family, school, a club, sport or other circle, the important people in our lives come from our networks. These support groups allow us to engage with others and for them to engage with us. Authentic relationships make life more meangingful and enjoyable.
Influence: Being part of a tribe can be empowering. With empowerment comes confidence, and confidence leads to influence. You can have positive influence over others when you trust in the community backing you. Similarly, you can be influenced positively from other people in your community. Much of our behavior comes from the influence of others, so ensure you’re surrounding yourself with strong communities.
Support: Giving and receiving support during life’s ups and downs is paramount to survival. Whether it’s a good change like a new job or a big move or a very stressful situation like a death in a family or a house fire, the support we receive from others gets us through it. Likewise, it feels good to support other people when they are experiencing significant life changes.
Knowledge/Resources: We listen to people we trust. A lot of what we know comes from the brains of community members. We offer one another advice, tips, suggestions, ideas and inspiration. Further, people in a community share tangible resources to make life more fulfilling and interesting. Whether you’re borrowing a kayak for a weekend adventure or a few bucks so you can try a new microbrew, other people are the best resources we have.
Passion: One of the most rewarding things about a community is collectively embracing a passion. Often times, members are like-minded and share hobbies. Topics may include yoga, running, wine, trivia, writing, music or movies. It doesn’t really matter; it’s just fun to have a group of people who get rallied as much as you do when it comes to certain interests.
At the end of the day, community is everything. Humans are not meant to live in an isolated world. If you’re grateful for one thing today, let it be the communities in your life and the positive energy they offer you.