I’ve been writing about community a lot lately. This is a communal time of year. Because of the holidays, we spend a lot of time with one another. Parties at home and work, social events, dinners, celebrations.

But not all company is created equal.

I’m not the first to stand in a room full of people and feel alone. Being in a room full of warm bodies and being surrounded by loving forces are not necessarily the same thing.

Having people who believe in you is essential to your survival. We can flourish and grow when surrounded by people who support us unconditionally. I’ve got a small group of individuals in my life who think I’m something special. And they’re vocal about it. I collectively call them my “Fan Club.”

I couldn’t survive without my Fan Club.

I don’t rely on my Fan Club for business advice or writing critique. I have an accountant and a mentor for that. It’s not my Fan Club’s job to be rational, strategic, or objective. In fact, they are fiercely subjective. They come to my defense unquestioningly. They always give me the benefit of the doubt. I can count on them to say, “you can do it!” Whatever it is.

When I fail fantastically, they pull me up, dust me off, and make me some tea. Then they send me back out into the world to try again.

Get out your journal and write about the following:

  • Who’s a part of your fan club?

Journal about the people who support you unconditionally. Write about what they’ve healped you accomplish. How you value them. Then journal about a way to show them gratitude for being in your fan club.

  • Whose fan club are you a part of?

If you’re lucky, you get to be in someone else’s fan club, too. Don’t take this honor for granted. This is your chance to give back for all the fabulous support you’ve been given.

(And if you haven’t received the support you need, this is your chance to model the way you’d like to be treated.)

Being part of a community helps us accomplish so much more than we could alone. It’s important to nurture these communities and keep them going strong.

Thank you for letting me be a part of YOUR fan club!