A huge part of my life has been community. From my time as a youngster (a wild and crazy one at that…thanks folks for still putting up with me), I have been involved in numerous of "communities". The family community, the small-private-school-where-everyone-knew-everyone community, the church community, the sports community - in each there has always been a sense of unity and togetherness. This sense of belonging and the value of being part of something greater than myself made a tremendous impact on me as a child and still does to this day.
Growing up and maintaining our communities is tough...say what you want, but it's just not the same (we get old and life…well you know, it does its thing and gets in the way). As an individual who had the opportunity to pursue higher education and obtain a college degree, coming home after that experience and being suddenly removed from that community was a difficult transition. The feelings of remoteness and isolation were painful, especially when my closest friends were in different cities, either pursuing their professional careers or continuing their education. There was a void in need of filling. I had to develop and submerge myself in other forms of community.
At times, these attempts at finding community were fleeting. They simply didn't fill the void. After some reflection, I realized that I had it backwards. Ask not what your community can do for you but ask what you can do for your community (or something like that...thanks JFK)! I was so fixated on being a part of a community that I forgot what it truly means to be involved in one.
Even with this profound realization, how does one become involved in a community? Admittedly, I struggled with this…and it was not until late summer of this year that I was presented with the answer: Immerse myself in a business that is founded on the principle of advancing communities through charitable donations and the provision of services that have the opportunity to positively impact residents of a 1.5-million-person metro area…Hello Helium!
I am happy to have found a clear answer, something to fill the void. Now I challenge everyone to see how you can get involved and make an impact within your community. Seek and find your answer! It could start as something small or something you are passionate about that you have always wanted to do. Even with friends and family members, providing unconditional love is always a great step. Remember, action causes motivation, not the other way around.
Thanks for listening. Talk soon.