Our society is more connected than ever before. Technology allows us to be united when we are apart, feel joined when we feel disjointed and become included when we are excluded. We are more ‘together’ than we have ever been in history, so why are we feeling so alone? There is a modern epidemic facing humanity- not the plague, not obesity, not even heart disease. It’s loneliness. The experience of being isolated, separated or rejected from the rest of your community. This feeling of ‘being the only one’ is quietly eating away at our sense of purpose and leaving us disconnected.
A little over two years ago my heart felt heavy with these same emotions. My life began to change as I withdrew from the things that used to bring me a great deal of pleasure. I was suffering. I didn’t fit in. And I felt entirely alone. The life I had come to live was not the life I had envisaged for myself and everywhere I looked I saw people on their path, seemingly succeeding. Living, sharing and finding belonging. The truth is what I saw was merely a guise, a façade hiding everyone’s struggle to be accepted.
In our search for acceptance I think we have found ourselves completely distracted. This guise of receiving ‘likes’ and ‘follows’ from people we don’t even know became more important than spending time with our real friends. Being reachable through our devices became a perpetual plug in, where our real life is interrupted by what is ‘more important’ (emails, social feed chatter and reminders). The purpose of our actions and relationships shifted to doing it ‘for the gram’, instead of doing it because it ignites our passion and makes us feel alive. We are becoming less and less present in our own lives, and more and more fixated on the numbing scroll through the lives of others. And yes, there’s a trade off. Our disengagement with what is real and happening right now, right in front of us, has left us feeling isolated, insufficient and alone.
Everywhere we look we feel like we aren’t good enough. We are bombarded with the message that we need to change who we are, to better fit the expectations of society. Our purchases are being shaped by influencers, our wants dictated by what is trending and our decisions pressured by a bias we don’t even know infiltrated our feed. These subliminal and unconscious messages have mass implications. We feel like we need to conform with everyone around us in order to be accepted.
There is only one thing that happens when we try to fit in with the masses. We force a change in ourselves that we aren’t meant to make. We sacrifice our beliefs, our perspectives and what makes us uniquely different. The result is not belonging, in fact our fruitless efforts give rise to the hues of loneliness. A superficial feeling of acceptance soon subsides to leave us feeling hollow and unfulfilled.
I have come to realise that we are all confronting the same demons, traumas and fears. All we are really searching for is love. Love is the only antidote to loneliness. As human beings it is at the very core of our programming to search for belonging. To find a community of people where the culture resonates with us and makes us feel at home. It’s why understanding our heritage brings us a sense of connection. It’s why spending time with friends and family allows us to feel nurtured. It’s why doing what we love, with the people we love, makes us feel whole. When we connect with the reminders of who we really are, we feel more ourselves and less someone else.
In Yogic philosophy ‘being yourself’ is known as fulfilling your dharma. Dharma is your purpose, meaning or reason for being. It is believed that no-one else can fulfill your dharma. Like a fingerprint- it is unique, yours and yours alone. Living your dharma brings you a great sense of abundance, love and freedom.
The Wellness Project has been born from that need to encourage more people to be themselves and find meaning in their lives. Our safe space ensures everyone feels welcome, without any effort needed to fit in. It is an environment that encourages everyone to explore themselves without distractions, where we can tune out the noise that has infiltrated our lives and re-connect.
The connectedness you so deeply desire from the world can only be found when you truly connect with yourself. When we re-discover our sense of self we realise that we are not alone. We come to realise that we all share the same life. The air we breathe is the same air, the ground we walk is the same ground, the water we drink is from the same source. We are all in this together. You are just like a universal synapse, you form part of a much bigger whole, and there is a great deal of comfort in knowing everyone is too.
When we practice together we are all on our own journey, but there is just something magic about being surrounded by the energy of others. A class environment reminds us that we are not alone. We too are feeling, breathing and being. We too are processing, struggling and questioning. We too are real human beings supporting one another by showing up and being real together. Join us for a practice, and find belonging within yourself and your community!