Building Bridges, Forging Families (Community)

A new year, a new theme.

And while I’m not going to unleash that theme on you just yet, mostly because I’m saving it for the timotheories January post that’ll be released tomorrow, let’s just agree that this first Wisdom Wednesday post of the year is significant. Heck, I’ve even layered this post into an existing series on health and wellness, and influenced by The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

Let’s consider that statement one more time “new year, new theme.” We could pretty easily replace the words “year” and “theme” with almost anything really.

It’s one of those catch-all-modify-it-as-you-like phrases that I often like to say, and which many of us are guilty of sharing too. It’s such a North American thing to embrace newness. Except that you can’t hear me saying it, so looking at it through the lens of my writing will have to do, dear readers. And if you really want to see me speak you can always head over to the YouTube channel. Lots of theories over there.

You know what else? It’s been an excellent Christmas break. For me especially.

Break In The New Year

An opportunity for both reflection and decompression with a strong mix of socialization thrown in for good measure. As is the tradition, but odd for me to written as a staunch non-traditionalist, we had our typical Christmas eve Secret Santa gift exchange, then a full day of Christmas activities, Boxing Day shopping and movie watching, my annual Fast and Furious marathon, a roommate holiday party, New Years Eve, and New Years Day dinner. It was a full docket to be sure.

If you haven’t guessed it yet, I insist on taking the last week of the year off because Christmas and New Years are big holidays in my family. We always seem to have at least three or four days dedicated to the holiday season and so the preceding weeks and afterglow take both a physical and emotional toll on me. It ain’t easy being green, as the once Kermit the Frog once said.

kermit

Communication Breakdown

The feedback I often get from more vocal friends who only want a cursory view of my break is “why do you even take holidays if you aren’t going anywhere?” Well my friends, I think it’s important to spend time with family and friends and I want to be in the best state possible to partake in these festivities. But honestly it’s just not simple drop in and drop out situation. I have to absorb it all and then filter the experiences. That, and I often catch some sort of seasonal illness around this time of year.

Now granted, I have been told on more than one occasion that I push myself to the limit at this time of year, but recognizing  the deadline oriented nature of the holiday and my own needs working retail (which doesn’t matter if at a store or head office), have led me towards this solution.

This is important to realize. Community is vital for a creative person, so we each need to find a way to inject it into our set of priorities.

You see creative cuties, community and communication often go hand in hand. The people who attend these events with me all bring their own unique perspective to each party, but the desire to be there and connect is important to each of us. Whether it’s bonding over a film series. the act of handmade gifts or sharing in a homemade meal that celebrates culture, there requirements for participating in these events are clear.

Advanced Community Studies

But is this really the life we should be living?

Of course, I have this theory that it all comes back to values. In fact, I call it the campfire theory. Which I’ll likely elaborate upon int’s own post sometime this year…

We all need to be in alignment with the people we spend time with, and a great shared valued is much like a campfire, we gather around it for warmth, share stories around it hours, and struggle to leave it in the wee hours of morning, even when we know we could be sleeping. This is passionate living, and one of the most important things we can do in life is find community with like-minded individuals. The world challenges us to do it on our own, but this is a fallacy, because studies have proven time and time again that giving back to others is good for us and after a certain point of success we want to give away what we have.

We need to make the time for community. Life lessons and experiences are often reverberated through the friends and family in our lives.

Once each of us realizes that we must actively work with a community, then we can begin to determine how often we engage with our communities (daily, weekly, monthly) and the best way to structure said community. It could be a Facebook group, a What’sApp groupchat, a dinner party or a campfire. But knowing what you want to offer the group(s) and receive back is essential.

I’m ecstatic to see what 2017 brings for you creative cuties, so hit me up with your own learnings and let me know what you thought of this wisdom. I’m out of theories for now, but I’ll share some more tomorrow.

Tim!

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