With summer fast approaching in Wisconsin, I realize a lot of people will be making plans for vacations, parties, and spending time outdoors with friends and family. I enjoy this time of year, but it all goes by so quickly. Like most of you, I wish I could just hit the “slow motion” button sometimes.
It’s difficult not to get caught up in the whirlwind of life. The accumulation of our life’s choices and actions determine our future and it’s really tough to consider that fact while it’s all happening around us. It truly takes time to see the impact over the years. We post pictures to social media capturing these memories as if to say, “life is wonderful right now!”, but are we genuinely enjoying it? With today’s fast pace, no wonder we as a society are struggling with mental health.
Recently, I attended a music performance. I was impressed by the band’s message and even more mesmerized with the audience’s reaction. Mental health was the theme, and it was really cool to watch. Now, I’m certainly not one to coddle. I wasn’t raised that way. People of my generation grew up with it being taboo to talk about our feelings. These days, feelings are at the forefront of everything. But I appreciate this change… I also understand this problem is larger than we realize and closer than we realize. At some point in time, we have all experienced some type of mental distress. At some point, someone we love has struggled. How do we show up for people during those times? How do we show up for ourselves?
This summer, let’s all take the time to slow down and talk to each other. We need to get back to having real conversations. It’s how we sort out problems and connect. Relating to people (or even commiserating) and finding our commonalities creates bonds and allows us to work through tough times together. Why make it so hard trying to go it alone? Community is the basis for success and growth in history. The saying “it takes a village” is so true. Families and friends, we have gotten away from that. When things get tough, isolation is not the answer. Talk to people. Go to the show. Make that reservation. Call an old friend. Help lies in the communities we have built over time. They are there for you because you have chosen each other. And that’s pretty neat when you stop to think about it. Have a great summer, everybody!