Posted by: michellemuldoon | March 31, 2015

Community is Key

Effort

I woke up this morning still thinking about a conversation I had last night at the Raindance Vancouver Booze and Shmooze social. I was speaking with several actors, and one of the topics that came up was that of Community; how hard it is to either find or create in Vancouver.

I’ll be honest, I’ve had this conversation multiple times. None of this was new to me. We struggle with this concept in a city that has so much to offer, and so little disposable income to take advantage of it all.

The nature of the conversation was a little ironic considering the bar was full with people looking to connect, but that doesn’t make the content of the conversation invalid. In truth, I think it was spot on.

Community is something I think about a lot. I was often the new kid on the block; the kid that moved around and was hard to pin down. I had a little bit of a lot of places in me, and it affected my perception of how I “fit”; in my school, in my town, and in my life. The outsider as observer role might be part of what draws me to writing, and it also might be what makes me a student of Community.

For those who know my schtick, you can probably tune out now, but if you haven’t heard it already, stay with me on this.

Community doesn’t just happen. It’s an active process. If you have too many passengers, you’re hooped. At that point, you don’t have Community, you have freeloaders. For a Community to thrive, you need to be as, or more, concerned about the well-being and success of other Community members as you are about yourself. If this isn’t the case, you have freeloaders. If Community is to thrive, then the celebration of another person’s success must be genuine. If not, you have freeloaders. Everyone must buy into the mantra, “When one of us succeeds, we all succeed.” Why? Because the Community helped get that person a rung higher on the ladder and for that we must all celebrate.

Community means releasing pettiness. It means the occasional suppression of ego for the recognition of immediate need in another.  Community is not the loss of self or a compromise of success or recognition. It’s an unwritten agreement that elevates everyone through the active process of Community.

There should be no room for toxicity or self-absorption in a Community. There should only be room for a helping hand, a supportive hug, a kind word, and celebratory toast. Celebrate each other and you celebrate yourself.

If you find yourself yearning for more of a Community ask yourself, are you a part of a positive active process to make it happen for more people than just yourself. It’s a hard question to ask, but when answered, it may just change your life… and your sense of Community.

 

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