How well do you really know your sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, mom, dad, nephews, nieces, friends, husband & or wife? This year really challenged what my response would have been to this question. It was a rough ride with lots of big waves. I feel like my husband and I have grown & learned so much about life in general but also about ourselves.
Unfortunately, the answer now is, I don't know them well at all. I mean I thought I did. But really not any more than at a surface level & it's something that really honestly bothers me to my very CORE! I have learned a very important thing about myself, I live to serve, inspire, encourage and I love to love. I am the type of person that if you come over to my house I will want to feed you a meal, make you coffee, talk to you, love on you. I want you to walk through that front door blessed and leave feeling even more blessed. I want you to want to come back to visit, not just because you have to. I want you to feel this is a safe place, no judgement, just love, sometimes tough love but love no doubt.
I married into a gigantic family, my husband is one of 10. With so many people its very hard to keep up with everything & we also live a good distance away from most of them. But those 2 things are both excuses to stay distant but thats not an option for me. I have started something new over the last several months. I make an effort to reach out to every single person on my husbands side of the family and mine as well to check in. The intent in this is not to have anyone pour their soul into a text message, however if they did, I would be 100% ok with that. I would love to hear anything beyond the so called "elevator speech". The true intent of the monthly reach outs really is, to open a door for sharing. So that if something was really impacting one of them, they might feel comfortable enough to share with me.
I am not saying I know everything about life. Because gosh that would be a false statement. But what I can do is be a shoulder to lean on or cry on, a warm heart to share with, listen, offer advice from personal experiences, and also share what I have learned along my short lived road to age 35. I want to provide a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing real life stories with one another. I hope this inspires you to do the same.
What you will see below is a little exercise that I put together for you to try out with your family members. Pick someone that you want to connect with on a deeper level but aren't sure where to start. The second question on the list speaks to your next connection with whomever it is you sit down with first. Make that meal & sit down and eat it together. No cell phones, tv and just talk. Talk about real life. If you want further questions for that meet up, please send in a contact form and I will get you some that can help you.
If this is too much of a jump for you, maybe start out with the monthly check in's and then lead into the sit down exercise.
This is SUPER important work to begin. We do not live in a world of fairy's and rainbows & life gets hard, really hard but together we can get through anything. Don't wait until 2019, start NOW!