Welcome to the community. How many people will say this when you move to a new town, join a special interest group or subscribe to an online dating site? In due time you’ll receive a welcome from at least one person, whether in-person, via email or a ‘like’, and then another and then another. Next thing you know, you’ve expanded your circle and you are now an active participant of the community that you joined. At this point, you are not sure how to engage with the community; you could feel awkward or just not sure why you joined. A word of advice: Stay. It will all make sense one day.
Slowly you’ll start feeling comfortable about where you are at and what’s next. You might be ambivalent about your next step, which is normal. You’ve just walked into a room with strangers and you feel naked. But guess what….most of those strangers feel the exact same way. Just walking into the room is a huge effort for most. Meeting new people and doing something different takes us out of our comfort zone.
A community is a social unit with commonality such as norms, religion, values, customs or identity. Communities may share a sense of place situated in a given geographical area (e.g. a country, village, town, or neighborhood) or in a virtual space through communication platforms.
A community fosters a sense of belonging; a sense of inclusiveness; a home.
“Home is where one starts from” – T.S. Eliot
Most everyone is searching for community and a community doesn’t have to be in the town that you live in or within your circle of friends.
It’s a really cool feeling to be part of something bigger than you; a fresh chance to make new connections and friendships. This doesn’t mean that you leave your other connections and friends in the dust; it simply means you build on what you already have and realize that there is strength in numbers.
I recently joined LexBlog, Inc. and am honored and excited to grow LexBlog’s amazing community of legal professionals that are literally shaping the law with each blog that is published.