After being gone almost two weeks, the adjustment back to work has been tough. These days leading up to Easter are always busy for me, but at the same time filled with rich meaning.
On Saturday, we held a retreat for all those who will joining our church at Easter. During the course of the day, I had the chance to speak to a small group of guys about how to be a man in today’s society.
We all had similar experiences, and we agreed that it’s hard to be a man of faith today. With so many competing forces, most of us are pulled, almost to the breaking point. Some guys do break, falling into all kinds of difficulties.
A common denominator in both men and women going through difficulties is that they feel isolated from others. They may feel lonely, discouraged, distant from even the loving people who surround them, including spouses.
We may all experience these feelings from time to time, but to have them consistently is a red flag that should be addressed. Maybe a conversation with a trusted friend, a pastor, or a therapist might be needed to help you get back on track. Joining some type of fellowship group might also help overcome feelings of isolation.
Just last night, I began a discussion with a group of guys from my church about forming such a group. Each of us has experienced the pain of isolation, and we came together to talk about how much we needed other guys to talk to in a positive and uplifting environment. In the end, we decided that we needed to move forward, so our first official get together is set for the Sunday after Easter.
With so many issues confronting us each day, I think it’s become critical to be surrounded by people who will lift us up, while at the same time holding us accountable. If you are lucky to have this, congratulations. You’ve set yourself up well.
If you don’t, begin working on developing a strategy to overcome your isolation. It may not be easy, but in the end, I think you’ll be better because of it. Give it a try.
Here’s some ideas to help get things moving:
- If you belong to a church, speak to one of the clergy/staff about what groups you might be able to join.
- Talk to a trusted friend/coworker/family member about what you might be struggling with. Don’t be surprised if they want to share their own struggles with you.
- Find others who you have something in common with, such as a gardening group, bridge club, etc.
- Join a support/fellowship/self-help group in your area.
- Bring everything to God, who is always there to listen and help.