If you are longing for your peeps, here are five ways to build your tribes:
1. Maintain your relationships with tribes you left behind.
Just because you had to move away doesn’t mean that you have to sever your relationships completely. Make it a priority to stay in contact with people who carved out a place in your life that just can’t be replaced by anyone else. (we just talked about this in this video Hangout) A simple phone call once a year could be enough. Just be aware that their lives may be continuing on without disruption while yours was turned upside-down, so be understanding if they don’t quite understand the new you. Groups may evolve and become something totally different as well so maintain the relationship as long as it is beneficial for everyone. Regardless, social media is a great way to keep yourself within arms reach of your favorite tribes.
2. Maintain your relationships with your peeps who left.
This is the flip situation where your life may be the same, but your peep is now in a different place with different people doing different things. Make the effort to stay connected. Even if your lives do diverge, you may find that your paths will cross again and in very unexpected ways.
3. Be fully present and take advantage of opportunities to be a part of a new tribe.
Change is rarely ever fun. Especially when it involves people coming in and out of our lives. However, if we only look in our rearview mirror, then we are missing out on everything that is in front of us. If you are open minded and willing to try something new, you will find that there is more life out there than any one person can live in a lifetime. New tribes are everywhere. What do you have to lose?
4. Create a new tribe even if there is little interest initially.
You are maintaining connections and are taking advantage of new tribes but you might still be feeling lost. If you are in need of a certain type of network and support system that you just aren’t finding, then perhaps it is time to create it for yourself and others. Even if there are not be people jumping up and down to join you, you might never know if there are other people out there until you create it.
5. Let people know you need a tribe.
If you don’t have the capacity to start your own tribe then at least let others know that you are looking and interested in connecting with other moms, people who love chess, horse lovers, triathletes, engineers, or whatever it is that you need. When people know what you need, they can help.
As military spouses, we often have the fortunate opportunity to live in foreign lands and meet people from all walks of life. Even if you miss all that is no longer part of your everyday life today, I hope that you take every opportunity to grow and be a part of new tribes that will add to your depth and breadth of character.
And if you still need to find your tribe of peeps—create one yourself!
What types of tribes are important for you? Have you ever found yourself part of a tribe you didn’t expect? Share it in the comments below.