Do you have multiple compartments in your life? Have you intentionally built a village in all those different spaces? Think about it for a second. What would it look like to build a healthy village around you in your professional life? What about in your personal life?
I have multiple villages like the one I talk about in “Cherishing Connection” about my Thursday small group. But in addition to my Thursday village, I have my “barn people” and then there’s always my “Fab 5” but we’ll get to them at a later time plus a couple others. I think it’s important to look at different capacities of your life and then intentionally build a village there.
So you might be asking, “where would I build a village?” Think about some places where you need community. Here are some suggestions:
- gyms: crossfit gyms, types of workouts like Zumba class, spin class, etc.
- parent groups: childcare centers, kids’ schools like PTO, ministry groups for parents
- extra-curricular activities: golf, tennis, hunting, etc.
- professional: your office, your industry, your mentors, etc.
- family: blood or not people that you want to be intentional about bringing into your life
One of those villages for me are my barn people. I’ve spent most of my life riding and competing in dressage. In some aspects, it’s similar to other sports. I have a coach; I have barn mates which feel like teammates, and a team of specialists that keep my four-legged athlete and myself together. But these people are also different in that they have become my village outside of my professional and daily life.
This village still consists of the top six villagers that I’ve shared with you, but they relate to the horse world but also to me. When something goes on in my personal life, this village knows because it usually effects everything I do in their village. For example, if I get in a situation at work that’s making me tense, my barn people usually know because that tension follows me to the barn — good or bad. And then ultimately, can follow me on a horse. The other part is that we have become that close that they have insight into my other life aspects because I want them to be involved more than in a horse type of way.
That’s the best part about villages: you get to design it so that it fits you and who you are so that you can be the best you. But think about it, wouldn’t that be a way for you to be best you if you intentionally built a village in every aspect of your lifestyle? Here’s my encouragement: think about the different parts of your life and invite one person in to start to build a special village.