Some of the Atlas Corps class 25 fellows

I have just finished my orientation week with Atlas Corps in D.C. with the rest of the Class 25 fellows-  a wonderful group of people from several different countries around the world. Spending the last few days with these amazing and inspiring group got me thinking about the value of community. What is it about being in a community that’s so bloody cool? For me (even though I am a massive introvert and sweat at the idea of engaging in small talk), I have found that having a strong community is important for pushing you along, sharing wins and lessons, experiences and combating loneliness ( you do look less crazy if you are taking goofy selfies in a group setting). It is such a privilege to be able to reach out and be understood by people who get you and are probably going through the same things that you are. As Atlas Corps fellows, we are lucky, we get to be instantly part of a pre-packaged community of cool people and that’s something that we should always value. But being part of a community is just the beginning, we need to grow and build that community for it to thrive and that’s one of my goals for myself going into this year as a fellow. How though? How does one go about building a strong community, a tribe? I’m no expert but here are some ways I plan on going about getting the most from this great community that I now get to be part of.

  1. 1 will not be cool – I will express love and give numerous hugs, laugh out loud and sometimes even dance like no one is watching!
  2. I will challenge you and myself to do more and be more.
  3. I will view everyone as a teacher and be open to learning something from every single person I encounter and will work to connect people
  4. Sometimes I will avoid small talk and ask some deep questions and will be willing to share deepness myself.
  5. I will cheer others on and celebrate their achievements.

Sometimes (mostly) I will fail miserably and not have the energy to put in the work but that’s why I have you, to remind me those times I do forget!