Hey Mamas! Welcome back to the Birthing Bestie Blog, where we talk about real topics pertaining to pregnancy, birth, motherhood, partnerships, and real life. Here on The Blog, we don’t shy away from talking about the hardships of motherhood. Instead, we validate, encourage, and embrace them with open arms.
This week, I’m talking to BOTH the mamas out there AND the doulas. We’re talking about something that is near and dear to my heart… COMMUNITY.
Community is a huge aspect of life. As people, we want to connect with others, and as you go and grow through different chapters of life, it’s important to maintain and foster a strong community of people to love and support you!
Prefer to watch?
Here’s the video for you, Mama!
So how do you go about building a community? Let’s talk about it!
First and foremost, just like preparing for birth, reflection is a big part of this process. Take the time to sit and think about what types of relationships you’re looking to cultivate for your community.
Are you looking for new mom friends to connect with and schedule playdates with?
Are you working on strengthening relationships that you already have?
Are you building your network of professionals and colleagues?
Depending on what type of community you are cultivating, you may approach things differently.
If you’re looking for new mom friends… what is important to you in this relationship? Are you craving connection with moms who share the same interests as you do, or is this community more about your child’s connection with other kids their age?
If you want to strengthen relationships you already have, think about what’s not working now? What do you need to feel a stronger bond or closeness? How can you also make changes so that the relationship remains mutually fulfilling for you both?
When building your professional network, what types of relationships are you wanting to foster? Are you hoping to find a mentor? A mentee? A peer? Someone who fills the gaps in your own area of work? As you approach these types of relationships, think about how you can help support and serve these people as well.
Once you’ve reflected on what types of relationships you want in your community, start putting yourself out there! Be bold! Whether you’re asking, inviting or giving… do so confidently, even if you don’t necessarily feel confident. Remember that these are procaticed skills, so the more you do it, the more confident you will become!
In my experience, most people really are open to connecting with and helping others, whether that be personally or professionally, we as people like to help! Let that give you peace of mind as you venture out to meet new people.
Another important reminder is that any relationship is a good mix of give-and-take. And while in life, business, and motherhood, there will be times when you give more than you take, there will also be times when you take more than you give. That is part of honoring the seasons of life.
The reality is that some people may be better at one side than the other… As women, and certainly as mothers, we are socially programmed to not easily or often accept help. But the whole point of having a community is so that you don’t feel like you have to do it all, or do it all alone.
So whether you’re offering to “give”, or being invited to “take”, remember that it takes practice, and at the end of the day, the best thing you can do for another person is to just show up.
Also similar to the birth process, it’s important to trust your intuition as you develop these new relationships. Give yourself the space to reflect on how your new and newly nurtured relationships make you feel. Are they fulfilling? Do they feel mutually supportive? Do you feel that there’s a good amount of give and take?
As adults, relationships certainly ebb and flow… and that isn’t a bad thing. It’s always important to evaluate your relationships and how they make you feel. If you find ourself more drained than fulfilled in some areas, it’s okay to set a boundary and take a break. It doesn’t mean you have to burn a bridge, but you also shouldn’t feel obligated to maintain something that no longer serves you.
Like everything in life, there are seasons for everything and everyone. Consistent reevaluation of your relationships will help you maintain and build a wide, strong, and supportive community.
Okay, friends, there you have it – my tried and true tactics for fostering community in your life. Don’t forget to reflect on what your dream community looks like for you! And if you need a little extra support in any aspect of your journey in building community, I’m just a click away. Reach out any time at firstname.lastname@example.org or slide into my DMs on Instagram @ebbirthing.
Until next time, mamas! Sending so much love your way. ♥️