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Finding a sense of belonging

Posted August 5th 2020 by Leon

'Finding a sense of belonging' title image

Finding ways to belong can help make us feel less lonely

A sense of belonging is a human need, just like the need for food and shelter. Feeling that we belong helps us to see value in our life and helps us cope with difficult situations.  It also helps with our motivation, health, and happiness.  When we feel connected to others, we know that all people struggle and have difficult times – we are not alone.

We all belong to our communities, be it the place we live, an activity we enjoy, our beliefs, our upbringing or aspirations. But we don’t always FEEL we belong. This can make us feel miserable and lonely, but we can work on building our sense of belonging.

These are some things we can do:

  • Look for ways we are similar with others instead of focusing on ways we are different. We are all human and there is more that connects us then what divides us, we just need to look for it.
  • Try to accept other people and their opinions/beliefs even if they differ from ours. Accepting is not the same as agreeing but it means we respect the value and the right of other people to hold their own views.
  • Try saying yes to opportunities to be with others and then throw ourselves in to whatever the activity is. Sometimes we just need to enjoy things for what they are, without overthinking them.
  • Let go of our judgments. No one is perfect and everyone’s life experiences are different – and they shape how we do things. When we stop judging others we can also stop judging ourselves and just allow ourselves to be a part of our community.

One of our Families Wellbeing guides shares advice from peer groups like Moments of Freedom about how to create belonging and inclusion. Read our ‘Welcoming communities’ resource for more tips.

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