Why Everyone Needs A Tribe

As a writer, I’ve been floundering for a few years. I didn’t know it but I was looking for a tribe.

I was wandering and then realized what I needed…

People who were like-minded and crazy enough to sit down at our computers for long hours writing, in hopes it will influence others.

If I am going to be a serious writer since publishing my first book, I knew I needed a writer tribe. I searched and scoured to find a group that I could identify with. A group whose heart beat the same as mine, crafting words into meaningful sentences, hoping to make a difference. I prayed and waited.

Like clothes in a department store dressing room, I tried a myriad of different tribes to see if they were a good fit.

I tried to force myself with a few and it didn’t work. It was like putting a square peg into a round hole, or squeezing my body into a size that didn’t fit.

They were lovely groups, but weren’t my peeps. I kept looking and asking my writer friends. Mostly, I prayed and asked God to help me find my tribe, one I could feel camaraderie and affinity. I nearly gave up when last year one of my author friends suggested I try her tribe.

I took the plunge and signed up. I even decided to attend the first conference of this newly found tribe and went with no expectations other than just to connect and learn.

I discovered other writers just like me.

Writers confident in our gifts and yet at times insecure.

Broken but not defeated.

Struggling and yet persevering.

Desiring and yet God honoring, Jesus loving writers!

It was like being away from home a long time and finding all the best reasons why you love to come back. It was a belonging moment.

Whatever gift you and I  might have, we need a tribe.

Why? Here are five simple reasons using the word TRIBE of why I believe everyone needs a tribe whether your gift is writing, music, leading, crafting, teaching or?

 TRUST 

We need a group of people that we can trust with our gift and who             experiences it the same way we do. Writers in particular can be quirky because we usually are alone crafting our words, it isn’t a team gift. It is very personal and we need people we can trust along the way.

RESPECT

Everyone needs respect. Having a group of people who share the same gift garners a deeper respect for your own gift and motivates us to be the best we can because it isn’t just about us, there are others who share the same gift. When we neglect or tarnish our gift it impacts others and hurts the tribe.

INSPIRE

Being around other like-minded similar gifted people is incredibly            inspiring. It is motivating and pushes us to work harder and smarter.

BELONG

It’s funny how when you discover your true tribe how at home you will   feel. It becomes a safe place to grow and try out new ideas with people who understand how your gift works.

ENCOURAGE

Everyone needs encouragement to keep going when the going get         tough. Especially when our gifts are first being developed and later when we’ve  experienced both success and failure and still want to give up! We need people to remind us to keep stewarding the gift. It is worth it and it is just that, a gift that has to keep going and growing to make the greatest impact possible.

I am incredibly proud to announce that my new tribe is the Advanced Writers and Speaker Association. They have become my tribe and I feel  the simple trust, respect, inspire, belong and encourage has visited the writers home in my heart. I am learning leaps and rubbing shoulders with these incredible author friends and my hope is that I will rub off on them too! They accept me right where I am at, there is a no compete zone  and man oh man can these women pray!! Like I said, this is home.

Where is your tribe? If you haven’t found yours, keep looking, keep praying, keep waiting. Somewhere out there is a place for you to belong and to grow that brilliant gift God has lavishly entrusted to you.

 

 

 

 

Unleash Your Joy!

Today I have the honor of hosting author Heidi McLaughlin in a guest post. Heidi is a dear friend and has just released her new book Restless For More. 

UNLEASH YOUR JOY!                                 by Heidi McLaughlin

Whenever I meet women vulnerable enough to be honest about their feely sings, all too often I hear this: “Heidi, I just want to feel joy. But I’m so tired, frustrated, overwhelmed, and I feel empty. How do I find fulfillment in my life so that I know I am finally enough? I understand. Our souls are restless for that ultimate feeling of joy.

Take Care of Your Heart

One of the first questions I ask is: “How are you taking care of your heart?” Imagine your heart being shaped like a bucket. Your bucket is full when you’re getting enough sleep, eating properly, spending time with God and all your relationships are in order. Conversely our buckets are empty when we feel angry, close to tears, lonely, resentful, mean, anxious and many more depleted emotions.

We desire a full bucket and so we try harder, work longer hours and are on a relentless quest to discover the right formula that will ultimately complete our soul and unleash joy. Sadly though, doing more does not fulfill us more. But Jesus tells us that in Him we can find it.

“The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill an destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life” (John 10:10 NLT).

Gratitude Unleashes Joy

2010 was the year of my empty bucket. The desolation of that gnawing emptiness made me lean into God to find an answer for fulfillment and peace. I found the most unusual concept.

“Be joyful always, pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances; for this God’s will for you in Christ Jesus “ (1 Thessalonians 5:18 NLT).

In spite of the fact that I was weary, sad and frustrated and my circumstances evoked more questions than answers, I chose to obey God and give thanks. I started a Gratitude Journal. Each day as I wrote something I was grateful for, I was reminded of God’s grace, His promises and that He is involved in every detail of my life. Over time thankfulness refilled my bucket, I felt more fulfilled and joy was right on its heels.

I encourage you to take this simple step of starting your own journal and see how it will refill your bucket, find fulfillment and unleash your joy.

About Heidi:

Heidi McLaughlin lives in the beautiful vineyards of the Okanagan Valley in Kelowna, British Columbia. She is married to Pastor Jack and they have a wonderful, eclectic blended family of 5 children and 9 grandchildren. When Heidi is not working, she loves to curl up with a great book, or golf and laugh with her husband and special friends.

You can download a FREE accompanying Study Guide when you purchase Heidi’s latest book

RESTLESS FOR MORE: Fulfillment in Unexpected Places.

It can be purchased on her website: www.heartconnection.ca