Can you imagine those peer-pressured, awkward years in high school without someone to talk to—a best girlfriend, a sister or a radical aunt? Ironically, that’s the time when you’re most centered on yourself, and yet it’s precisely when you need to connect with others. In the book, Girlfriends, authors Carmen Renee Berry and Tamara Traeder state, “They (girlfriends) are not only essential for coping with our day-to-day frustrations or sharing private jokes, they help us limp through a crises and, in the long run, help us grow as women and human beings. "
While there is an inherent emphasis in our society on individuality, a woman’s path in life is not meant to be traveled as a lone Goddess. The connection you make with others, whether they are friends, family or strangers, is what gives your life meaning. With the exception of some religious orders, in which monks vow to live in solitude, most of us need other people (or at least a pet) to add texture to our lives. Studies show that social connections have a positive effect on our well-being. Research noted in the Girlfriends book proves that a woman’s development is very much tied into the personal connections she makes in life, whereas a man’s development relies more upon his independence and self-reliance.
Some say the Internet is the ultimate connection for everyone in the world. The Internet cannot, however, replace companionship, because it disconnects you from emotions and spirit—two important feminine traits. Email can never replace the spectrum of emotions created by the physical interaction with another human being. The Internet will not teach your children how to listen to the sound of a voice with their hearts, or how to hug a friend who is hurting.
Face to face connection with others is nourishment for your soul as much as food and water are for your body. A couple of years ago, I started attending a woman’s meditation group thanks to a “connection" from my good friend Jenai, who happened to meet Simone, the woman who leads the group, at a book signing and then told me about her. (Jenai and I got connected while volunteering for a non-profit teen girls event and then became close friends. ) The women in the meditation group were from a wide range of ages (from twenties to sixties) and spiritual beliefs (from Buddhist to Christian). Most of them didn’t know each other before joining the group. When we meet, we spend timing chatting about what’s going on in our lives, eating, choosing tarot cards and, of course, meditating. I don’t usually see any of these women outside of our group, and yet I feel closer to them than some friends I’ve had all my life. We are supportive of one another, non-judgmental, and very-much connected on a spiritual level as women and as Goddesses. I try never to miss my meditation group, because I always leave with a full and grateful heart. Like chocolate, I crave that interaction, and sometimes I get to have both. In fact, one night, all of us brought one chocolate dessert to share!
The connections you make during your time on earth are like a million lifelines floating in a vast ocean—each with its own unique life preserver, only a thought away from embracing you. When your world is turned upside down and you want to crawl into a shell, the best thing you can do is reach out for one of those lifelines. Helen Keller said, “Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light. " All it takes is your desire to connect.
5 Ways to Make Connections:
Excerpted from the book: The Goddess of Happiness, A Down-to-Earth Guide for Heavenly Balance and Bliss
Debbie Gisonni, aka The Goddess of Happiness™, is an author (The Goddess of Happiness: A Down-to-Earth Guide for Heavenly Balance and Bliss and Vita’s Will: Real Life Lessons about Life Death & Moving On), speaker, happiness expert and columnist for iVillage.com. Contact: http://www.goddessofhappiness.com
Copyright, All Rights Reserved, Debbie Gisonni