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Last week I facilitated an NHS women’s network event and our theme was Belonging. Belonging is one of the core foundations of confidence, according to our flying formula.
What does belonging mean to you?
For me it’s a warm feeling inside, realising that I am loved and valued by others and I can see the contribution I make, because it is different, even if only very slightly, to everyone else’s.
Belonging is the fuel we need to start flying – if I feel like I belong, it’s as if I have permission to make a difference in the world.
So how do we create a sense of belonging?
Here are a few thoughts:
Perhaps the biggest hurdle we need to overcome, is that realising we belong, will mean letting go of our assumption that we don’t. If we feel we belong, so will others and that sense of belonging will spiral so every time you walk into a room, take a deep breath and whisper these words to yourself; “I belong here and I have permission to be myself”.
Share qualities that you love about them and tell them what you value them for often.
So they can learn from their own thinking and ideas.
Our ideas on the best friends for them may not be right, trust that they can figure this out for themselves.
Pressure on them to find friends quickly might lead to the wrong choices and reduce their confidence. They will need to explore where they fit first and this might take some time.
We are their best role models, if they see us creating a sense of belonging for ourselves they will learn how to do it!