I finished listening to Brene Brown’s newest book, “Braving the Wilderness,” while traveling this weekend. I think I need to read it about ten more times to really let it sink into my brain and heart.
It’s interesting that I have been thinking a lot about belonging lately, about how nice it is when I enter the local yarn shop, River Wools, and the owner looks up and says, “hey, Beth,” or when I go to Wise Pies and they know my usual order. There is something so good about feeling like you belong somewhere.
What I realize from reading Brown’s book is that because I️ feel that connection I am able to live in community with people who are very different than me in other areas. Because I have moved in, moved closer to people, I am known and they are known. Now their differences don’t make us enemies. They are my friends, and make me a better person.
I can brave the wilderness of not thinking exactly like others around me because now I can see them as a person. I know their children names, their dog's breed. I like the same books, movies, etc. We have the same hobbies. I don’t have to be exactly like a person to feel a sense of belonging and friendship. Its important, in our society, to move beyond those like us and get closer to those unlike us.
“True belonging is a spiritual practice of believing in and belonging to yourself so deeply that you can share your most authentic self with the world and find a sacredness in both being a part of something and standing alone in the wilderness.”
“True belonging doesn’t require that you change who you are. It requires you to be who you are.”