A New Era of BE-Longing?

If we peel back the onion and are truly honest, is it possible that we’ve been social distancing for years now and didn’t know the label for it? Or perhaps we simply were too busy and distracted to calculate its toll on our shared humanity.

How many times have you been crammed into a tight space yet been in your own bubble?

Courtesy of bantersnaps via Unsplash

I’ve been noticing it for years.

It’s just now that we’ve labeled it as social distancing. Depending on where you live, it may be advised as prudent behavior or mandated by curfews. Either way, we have heightened our awareness of social distancing.

And it has undoubtedly affected our doing.

We can no longer gather at the corner cafe, coffee shop, or co-working space.

We all find ourselves doing new things — like washing our hands for 20, or is it 30 seconds? Or we find ourselves doing former routine things in new ways. Like the way, my pal, Zane

Photo credit: Zane Curtis

Curtis, created a new trend in home office space since his 4-week old daughter converted his former office into her nursery.

Imagine with me for a moment. What if we turn the kaleidoscope a bit and are able to see a new mosaic formed through the COVID-19 crystals?

Might this be an invitation, our invitation to enhance our BEING?

Earlier today, I was struck by a thought…one that even if it has crossed my mind or path before, I never gave it the time of day or allowed the seed to sprout and become something more.

So many of us have “bought our way into belonging”. What do you mean, Kevin?

Well, for whatever reasons, we believed belonging and acceptance are bestowed as rewards for achievement. That we had to earn our way into belonging — like admittance into the elite dinner club, country club, or top performers in your profession.

**In other words, we have believed that our belonging was somehow based on our DOING.**

Imagine with me for a moment…what if the word belonging contains a clue about its true essence?

**BE-Longing**…the longing in all of our hearts to BE who we truly are and to BE loved, accepted, and appreciated for WHO we are over and above anything we DO.

You heard it said that we are Human Beings and not Human Doings. So it is that we have a longing for BE-longing rather than a longing for DO-longing.

**What does it mean to BE-Long?**

A place of acceptance based on BEING — in your essence. As a HUMAN. For your humanity.

There is a Latin phrase that establishes this essence. They called it the ***Imago Dei*** — we are made in the Image of God…and that is WHY we BE-Long.

It’s not based on any accomplishment…or lack of accomplishment. You don’t achieve your way into belonging or lose if you suddenly underachieve. It’s not based on adherence to a code of beliefs or standards for behavior.

**You already have the only credentials you need — you ARE. You live, breathe, and have being, therefore…YOU BELONG.**

Rather than allowing social distancing to DIMINISH your DOING…let, it ENHANCE YOUR BEING…and your BE-Longing.

Over a year ago now, I started hosting a weekly online gathering that soon adopted a couple of mantras. YOU BELONG, and WE ARE BETTER TOGETHER. Nine people joined that very first Friday. Last week, we were close to 60. ⤵︎

Photo credit Kevin Monroe

I partnered with my friend, Mike Vacanti, who founded the HumansFirst Club and identified it as the Least Exclusive Club you’ll ever join. We called our gatherings the HumansFirst Hangouts… because that is what they are. A place for humans to hangout. To connect. To converse. To create a community — that is both online and in-person — because in the 21st Century both ways now constitute connecting IRL — In Real Life.

We don’t have a cover charge…nor do we check IDs or credentials. ALL people are welcome — with or without degrees or titles. We don’t ask about your credentials.

We ALSO don’t ask about WHAT you do? We celebrate who you are and may ask HOW you found your way here. **But the other stuff — accomplishments, titles, credentials seem more of a barrier than a bridge to BE-Longing.**

We’re doing our part to usher in a new era of BE-Longing.

Care to join us?

We’ve joined forces with 360º Nation to host a global gathering based on belonging. The inaugural session is Thursday, April 2 at NOON Eastern ⤵︎



Kevin Monroe
Kevin Monroe
Kevin Monroe helps people flourish on the road less traveled in business, leadership, and life so they make their dent in the universe. Since he was a teenager, he has usually chosen roads less traveled which usually involve going against the grain and seeking to go with the flow. All in hopes of making the world a better place and inspiring others to do the same. His unique contribution to the world is creating environments, hosting encounters, and crafting experiences where people are inspired, equipped, and encouraged to live, love, and lead in extraordinary ways. He hosts a variety of events and experiences designed to do just that including; the Higher Purpose Podcast, The Gratitude Challenge, This ExtraOrdinary Life, and most recently, The League of Extraordinary Difference Makers. Kevin holds a Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership from Gonzaga University and an undergraduate degree in theology from Mercer University. He lives in Woodstock, GA with his lovely wife, Gwen. They are the parents of two adult children and one precocious granddaughter, Emma.

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  1. Thanks, Kevin.
    I work with people in recovery, and one of the things I heard some years ago is “Only an addict would see isolation as a cure for loneliness.”
    In so many ways, our culture promotes addiction -to stuff, to opinions, to binge-watching, to celebrity, and then list goes on. I’m liable to those too. Each time I trade connection for painlessness, I suffer. Once I get used enough to that trade, I’m addicted to seeing the escape from discomfort as happiness.
    We recently let our wonderful dog Dempsey go. I spoke to a neighbor about it. She said, “That’s why I will never get a dog.” Wow – trading connection for painlessness.
    Stay in focus, brother.

  2. An excellent initiative, Ken, Congrats!

    The seemingly uncontrollable growth of social media has turned humans into digital robots playing the ‘fastest fingers’ game against themselves. No wonder, the flip side of COVID-19 has compelled us to pay due attention to the basic human instinct of sharing-and-caring.

    Of course, exceptions are always there to remind us of our obligation to address the uncontrollable egotistic imbalance in societal values. A live example is Mr. Dennis Pitocco, the one I love to address as Dennis Pitocco Sir. It is in this respect I find immense value in your combined efforts. It shall certainly be an honour for me to join you on the 2nd of April.

    Thank You!

    • Good day, Bharat. Thank you for you kind and supportive comment. Looking forward to having you join us on April 2. Yes to amplifying sharing and caring. Hopefully, we make new habits now that we carry forward with us once we get through this crisis.