Last weekend I co-led a Vision Board workshop and mini-retreat for 27 women. We spent four hours reconnecting with ourselves, our passions and our desires for 2011. Despite the large number of attendees, it felt extremely intimate. The feedback afterward made it vividly clear that everyone experienced one thing in particular: immense relief to be with other mothers looking to live inspired lives.
Motherhood can be extremely lonely. In the privacy of our coaching sessions, my clients express the desire for a genuine connection with someone or something. It’s hard enough to spend quality time with friends due to our busy schedules; add to that the upheaval of a recent move, the arrival of a second child, or a return to work and it's easy to lose "you" entirely.
Joining a Mothers’ Club can certainly help. I was amazed to find a huge group of women in the same boat. My very first play group ended my sense of isolation and provided some much-needed socializing. However, as my kids got older and became involved in other activities and I became more confident in how I wanted to raise them, I realized that I longed for something more meaningful than just sharing motherhood tips.
As tears welled up in our workshop participants' eyes, I once again remembered the pain that comes from feeling alone and felt gratitude for the connections I have made. Sometimes soulful connections just happen, but most often they take some work. I think of my best friends now as my TRIBE, which I use as an acronymn for Trusting, Real, Inspiring, Belonging, and Engaging. I consciously choose to invest time and energy to create relationships important to me. One of my mentors, Cheryl Richardson, says “Our community makes us whole. It heals us, challenges us to be authentic, and, most important, teaches us to love.”
My desire for you is to have those deep and meaningful relationships that will help you and your family to thrive! I have included a coaching exercise below that will allow you to look at your connections in a conscious way. Think about who your TRIBE is and whether or not it's one that will lead you to the life you desire.