How can you develop a sense of belonging this year? As you prepare for students, families, faculty, and staff to return to campus, there is much to think about: maintaining health and safety, preparing facilities, gathering supplies, and so much more. When you welcome your community back to campus, remember an important part of your preparation: How will you develop a sense of belonging?
Belonging, One of Our Basic Needs:
According to psychiatrist William Glasser, Belonging is one of our basic needs. He defines love and belonging as one of our essential psychological needs for seeking relationships, making connections, giving and receiving affection and feeling part of a group. Sebene Selassie, mindfulness expert and author of You Belong, describes belonging as coming from within a person and states that difference does not mean ‘not belonging.’ Selassie writes, “Difference” does not equal “not belonging,” but as many of us live farther away from our families and as we connect to multiple communities and cultures, our sense of belonging feels tenuous.”