I had a couple of interesting events this week. Firstly, I went to watch a concert along with many others. We all came together to enjoy the live music and hear the old hits being belted out. Then today I came together with family to celebrate my nephew’s eighth birthday. What could these two things have in common? Not much I imagine you saying but actually they shared one major thing which is central to life – connection.
On Wednesday when I headed towards the Apollo in Manchester, so did hundreds of others and we connected through a shared love of music. It meant we enjoyed a shared experience and we could all go away with something that had brought us together. The people I met were friendly and open to a conversation despite the fact we didn’t know each other and came from very different places.
The same can be said of the birthday party today. It was a shared experience that we were all able to take part in. But it was also a way of connecting and revisiting even strengthening the ties we have as members of one family. As with most families we separate and continue our lives and then every so often come back together and reinforce our connection. Why are these things important?
We are by nature social creatures and live together in communities. It is vital for our health and well-being that we come together and connect with other people. Living in isolation is damaging and really needs to be done sparingly. In the modern age we spend a lot of time in our own little boxes, our own worlds where we focus on our own priorities and problems. I have written before about how with the world at our fingertips we often don’t look further than our own small sphere of life.
Isolation is a serious issue and one we need to recognise within our communities. Who are the people who rarely go out or in some cases are housebound? How do they connect with others and more importantly how can we help them connect with others? Some have criticised modern life for creating or making this problem worse. I don’t think so. In fact, I think social media used in the right way can help us to make connections. The important thing is to make sure that this doesn’t stay online and can be brought into the physical world.
I enjoyed both the experiences this week. Both were massively enjoyable and both reminded me what makes us human – the ability to connect. Connection that we can then use to grow, develop and live.