A community is a social group whose members have something in common, such as a shared government, geographic location, culture, or heritage. Community can also refer to the physical location where such a group lives.
My 2023 word of the year is community! I embrace and participate in all of its definitions!
As I sit on the patio overlooking the marina in our friend’s condo in Puerto Vallarta, I know for certain that this is the word of the year for me and for WREN. The word, the feeling, the safety, the comraderie and the sheer spirit all come to mind, wrap around me like a blanket and leave me to feel enveloped in love, warmth and kindness.
Personally, WREN has always been about Community. I started WREN to create and build a new community for myself and I’m still pleasantly shocked at the impact it’s had on my life and the lives of others. As I ponder over what’s coming now that we’re in 2023, I know it is going to mean more than ever before. It will grow even closer to my heart, pulsate in my soul and in fact has already started vibrating as I reflect and reset here in Mexico…
Now before anyone panics over the dreaded implications of 2023 (wait, we’re WREN members, we never panic) let me explain why community is going to take on extra significance in 2023. AND please let’s just be real!
The entire world has experienced a shit storm! We’ve navigated the first global pandemic in generations, we’re seeing nations fracture, we’re feeling the weight of a war between an authoritarian superpower and a peaceful nation and we’re sorting out whether or not we’re in a recession, depression or some version of the Matrix! Blue pill or red pill?
Even with all of this going on, I still feel very positive, extremely fortunate and filled with gratitude…and I’m bound and determined to stay that way! Am I being a Pollyanna? NO not at all!
I know some of the facts and I’m confident that together, we’ll not only survive this year but we’ll end up thriving. However, to do so, we MUST stick together! Now is not the time to be egoic, or to take advantage of people when they’re down, or to profit from the misfortune of others, spread gossip, be greedy or any of the actions that might be easy to justify ‘under the circumstances’! I urge you to just think a bit more about your actions and your impact and think how you can make someone’s life easier and better.
I also want to remind you that we are smart people who know that crisis brings opportunity and we certainly don’t want to miss out on the upside of a crisis! Think about it in terms of offering solutions to problems. There will be problems…and we want to always be creating solutions!
It will be a fine balance and that is where community can be helpful in many ways…
How does community fit into all of this…well LACK of one has certainly been identified as a problem. Personally, I’ve been talking about how important community is for years. And I really wouldn’t shut up about it during the pandemic. It was magnified 10X during the pandemic. And in fact, loneliness (which is where many people end up with out a community to turn to) is according to the UN and other global think tanks, a global epidemic with no signs of slowing down.
Think about how many people you know, your own family members, your own friends, neighbours, coworkers…the list goes on. People who were alone, lonely, isolated. No one should ever have to be alone…there are EIGHT BILLION of us on the planet! There should be enough for all of us to have a community. We need to keep setting the example.
Are you starting to understand why I’m so passionate about community? Why I started WREN. Why I’m so happy that my mom has such a great community and how lucky and grateful I am that I passionately create community, enthusiastically participate in shared communities and stand on my soapbox and scream that you need to belong to a community and do your part to nurture, support, grow, love and be grateful to have that community.
Now how do I put that in perspective for us, for WREN members, for this year 2023?
We have joined this group, club, circle, tribe…to participate, take action, grow and build on for ourselves for our futures. 2023 is going to be hard for some of us, we’re going to need those of you who made better plans, had better timing, created profitable circumstances or just had better luck. We’re going to need you to support those who are going to find themselves on the upside down end of 2023. Am I saying we need charity or sympathy…not at all. 2023 is when we use the best of the intentions of community to support each other.
Kindness, generosity, creativity, collaboration, ‘win-win’ situations, thoughtfulness, and more than ever before, lifting each other up. Holding each other and not letting anyone fall! We can each offer what we feel empowered to, what is in our limits and perhaps what is just outside of our comfort zone. We can do this while taking responsibility for ourselves, our health, wealth and our personal situations. We can do this mostly because we know we’re not alone. Not now and not in our combined futures. We want YOU to know we’re here for you and you had BETTER be here for us!
And so with that, I’ll finish my rant about community by stating once again during my 30 days of gratitude how grateful I am for my communities..
I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to come to Mexico for over a month, to reset, recharge and really feel what it’s like to work from another country
I’m grateful to see and be witness to the wonderful community that my mom has here in Mexico. Her circle is what I wish for all of us, people to considerately and constantly think about where you are and intentionally include you in the myriad of activities planned and spontaneous!
I’m grateful for my teams, my right hands at WREN, our shared properties, our partners and supporters and all of the crossovers that happen between my work life and personal life.
I’m grateful knowing that I have set up my retirement community, my lifeline, my boardgame nights, my gym buddies, my potluck parties and my future travel companions.
I’m grateful that YOU are on this path with me as we navigate together, this interesting year that will be 2023.
With love, gratitude and in community,