Foreword: The following is one of a number of articles I’ll be posting about my spring break trip with the Willamette Rugby Football Club in Ireland and Scotland. The posts range from personal reflections to picture updates, but all came from my thoughts and experiences between March 19th and March 26th.
I’m a strong believer in the power of community and the way that it shapes our experiences. I believe that relationships are not about giving and taking, they are about giving alone. You share your energy with others, and energy is shared back with you. It may not always come from the same place in the same amount, but it is coming, both from others and from inside.
While on tour, I spent a good amount of time talking with Coach Anthony Lally, who was born in Dublin, lived in Sydney, and travels frequently around the world. The thing he said to me early on in our discussion of school, work, family, etc was “it’s all about the village, mate.” This concept is something that I’ve definitely held true for a long time, but was having trouble expressing in such a concise way. The notion of a “village” in today’s society is extremely hard to identify. Is my village the immediate people around me? Is it the people in the state I live in? Is it the people I see each day on my way to work? Is it my coworkers, my family, my friends, spouse, etc? Well yes and no.
A village is what you make it, and in the purist sense, it is the sustainable community of energy that has individuals contributing to each other and to themselves in a way that is authentic and empowering. Villages can be polluted and they can break, so they have to be a continued effort by those in the village.
Take some time today and think about who it is that is in your village. Who do you share your energy with? Where does your energy come from? If you have been feeling weak, depressed, stretched thin, or overworked, perhaps you need to restructure that village.