A friend shared with me that she went on a hike yesterday. I thought "what a lovely day to go on a hike!" It was a beautiful day. Warm, sunny, and hot for a NW spring day. And very still. I asked her how the hike was. She said it was wonderful and cool. Light breezes, some high-mountain mist and cool temperatures, perfect for hiking. Because, she said, mountains make their own weather patterns.
Mountains make their own weather patterns. A range of mountains is big enough to disrupt and generate their own weather patterns, creating conditions that may be completely different than the lowlands that surround them. It is their GROUPING that creates a mass big enough to generate its own weather and buffer them from weather extremes in the atmosphere.
And this is how it is for us in community. It is our grouping (togetherness, connection, shared perspective) that can influence the way we see ourselves and what we are capable of. We are both sheltered and empowered by our community, protected from the ever-shifting patterns of feelings, comparisons, judgements and opinions. Community allows us to GENERATE inspiration, gratitude or whatever we need. Community allows us operate outside of "conventional wisdom," how it "should be," "the way it has always gone," what's "reasonable" and "expected." Because, like a mountain range, we can generate what we need when we are in community. Our community reminds who we are, for each other and for ourselves. Some mountains are taller or wider or steep or gentle, and that doesn't matter. What matters is that we all stand together with whatever we bring.
And this is distinctly different than a mountain sitting all alone. Mt. Rainier sits all alone as the highest point in the Cascade Range in Washington State, surrounded by valleys, subalpine meadows and old-growth forests. It has no surrounding mountains to generate it's own weather pattern or buffer it from the volatile atmospheric high winds and extreme weather. Hence it is frequently blasted by heavy snow and rain as well as shifting winds and weather patterns.
When we go it all alone we are like Mt. Rainier. We may stand high above the valleys below, but at a cost. We are constantly buffeted by the winds of our businesses, customers, investors. We are pulled and pushed by the circumstances, judgements, feelings and opinions that life presents us. In this scenario is it millennia of more of the same, constantly under the barrage and whimsy of human nature. We also have no mountains to look up to, and no mountains below we can help shelter.
But we aren't a mountain. We can move, join a community and allow our participation to support us. We can choose not to go it alone any longer. It's time. Time to relinquish the "Badge of Busy," the "Sword of Lone Warrior" and find your community. Lean in to the shared strength and resources that communities