This conversation is closed.

How do you create a community in which you feel connected in a deeply personal way?

What does Creating Community and being known in your community mean to you at the deepest human level? Are we settling for a life where being part of a 'community' consists of having lots of Facebook friends? In a society where neighbors can go without knowing one another, co-workers co-exist, and we spend more an more time developing relationships on-line, I ask what do YOU seek in a deeply caring community? How do you approach building a life so that you are surrounded by people who truly know you, people whom you care deeply about? Please share your stories.

  • thumb
    Nov 13 2013: Our initial responsibility for making a positive contribution to the community is to know ourselves; to understand our beliefs, values, ethics and morality. Otherwise, we will continue to add to the confusion around us.

    Once we have achieved some degree of self-awareness, we will be a positive influence in our communities; the specifics will take care of themselves. As our learning process continues, as we continue to process new input, perspectives and insights and, in turn, offer them to the community.
  • Oct 23 2013: Keep it small.
  • thumb
    Oct 23 2013: Two talks I would recommend to you as you think about your question are those by Amanda Palmer and Brene Brown. Both talk about steps to letting people know you.
  • thumb
    Nov 13 2013: Hi Jennifer, and welcome to TED conversations!

    One of my life philosophies, is..."BE" what we want to "SEE". So to contribute to a community in which I feel connected in a deeply personal way, I make the effort to connect in that way. In my perception, it is much more enjoyable to feel something from within myself, rather than seek it externally.

    Contributing to the community may mean different things to different people, because we all have different skills, talents and time or energy limitations. It also can be influenced by the stage of life we happen to be in at any given time.

    When my kids were in school, for example, I volunteered to teach swim and ski programs, attended all their sport, theatrical and school related events, etc.

    Later, when the kids were off to college, I started building gardens....expanding a passion of mine, and I opened the gardens up for people to visit, which happened very often. The house and gardens became a gathering place for many different people.

    At one point, I started serving on planning and development boards....first locally, then on regional and state levels.

    I've done hospice care for friends in the village as they were dying, as well as at a terminal care facility.

    For me, it is a matter of "BEING" all that I can "BE". To be surrounded by people who truly know me, it is important to truly know them to the best of my ability:>)
  • Oct 27 2013: A community could be many things, but I would rather think about it in a positive way. When I think of a community I think of people that have a common interest with me or a least they provide me with a sense of support - I think it should be the same thing when we go online.

    People tend to forget that social networking sites like Facebook, or the internet as a whole for that matter, is not a real place. The people who set up these sites like to call their websites “communities” just because it sounds like a suitable description of what they hope online interactions will lead to. In reality though, online communities are a good source of information but are not really viable, or safe, places to find a sense of community.

    Social networking sites are filled with people who do not actually have any motivation to join a community other than to have an audience that will applaud them for anything that they do. Of course there are just as many good people in online forums and social networking sites but it is sometimes hard to distinguish between the two until it is too late.

    For me, the best way to judge the merit of a community is to measure it by how much good it does for you in the real world. Does your community make you happy or feel better about yourself? If it does, then there is no question that you are in the right place. On the other hand, if you find yourself having to compete for attention and begin to have doubts about yourself as a result of being a part of a community, then you might have made the wrong choice of people to interact with. It isn’t always true that adversity will help you become stronger – the world is already filled with too much artifice and misery to look for even more of it in a place where you are supposed to find shelter.
  • thumb
    Oct 23 2013: the word community has been well over-used in recent years.

    to have the kind of community that you seem to be hinting at, you simply have to live with and among the people you wish to have deep and meaningful relations with.

    everything else is just a social interaction with more or less connection depending on the situation and method of communication..
  • thumb
    Oct 23 2013: Temporary Community Formed out of Similar interest is the Answer for me.
    • Da Way

      • 0
      Oct 23 2013: why temporary? if you found companions of similar interest, do you not wish to keep in contact for longer?
      • thumb
        Oct 23 2013: HI Da,

        In my view anything stated for too long, changes the meaning and concept of Why it was formed.

        I believe Change is Good, It balance things out. That is why temporary.
        • Da Way

          • 0
          Oct 23 2013: I see. I think your view is valid providing the pre-requisite that you are able to constantly form these new communities.

          If I had to do this, I'd be worried that one day when I am old and mentally less abled, I would find it much harder to find and form such communities. Therefore I would have to rely on the emotional bonds I had invested in my earlier years and cash them in.