Belonging > Fitting In

At the beginning of the school year there is pressure for students to get involved, to be friends with the right people, to be a part of the cool crowd. Your kids might be feeling that pressure right now!   That sense of pressure is within all human beings, it’s the longing to belong. 

Brene Brown in her book, The Gifts of Imperfection, says that belonging is, “the innate human desire to be part of something larger than us.” She notes that “fitting in is about assessing a situation and becoming who you need to be to be accepted. Belonging, on the other hand, doesn’t require us to change who we are; it requires us to be who we are.”

For kids and adults, fitting-in becomes the easy substitute for real belonging. It’s the cop-out choice to simply fit-in to a group so that the sense of belonging is there even if they have changed themselves for benefit of fitting in.

The best thing we can do for ourselves and our kids is to simply be our authentic selves.  Be who we were created to be. We don’t need to perform to fit in to a group. We don’t need to adapt to gain acceptance, we must accept ourselves for who we are and be accepting others for who they are. And that includes accepting our children!

Belonging can only come when we accept ourselves and accept others in their authenticity. 

To hear more on this, worship with Engage Newark on Sunday at 10:30 at 31 West or right here online:

We are talking more about belonging and how you belong in the Engage Newark community, we hope to see you there.


One Comment

  1. I wonder if there are seasons of life where this is easier to do? Or perhaps it’s a personality type? I suspect a lot of people are like this, but I have an easier time accepting others in their authenticity than I have accepting myself. I long to be the kind of person who accepts myself in this way.

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