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The Power of Belonging for Mental Wellness

Do you have any prevalent memories of feeling lonely? Research shows that feeling lonely can have a harmful effect on your health. Nonetheless, feelings of loneliness are deeply interconnected to our desire for belonging and overall mental wellness.

What Does It Mean to Belong?

According to an article from the Education Psychology Review, belonging and the desire for interpersonal relationships and attachments are fundamental human needs. As people, we desire connection to feel seen, heard, and wanted by the social groups we identify with. This can include social groups such as your family, ethnic or cultural groups, and other communities.

Moreover, as noted in an article from the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, we are deeply dependent on our group members for our social, emotional, and mental wellness. Therefore, we seek each other for more than social contact, but to form long-lasting bonds that help shape the way we see, think, and feel about our existence.

However, belonging is hampered and our mental wellness is harmed by social exclusion. Listed below are some of the negative effects a lack of belonging can have on your mental wellness:

  • Self-judgment
  • Decreased self-esteem
  • Depression
  • Anxiety

Therefore, having a sense of belonging can play an important role in mental wellness.

Benefits of Belonging for Mental Wellness

According to an article from Health Promotion International, belonging can be seen as a buffer between our life experiences and our mental wellness. This is because the relationships and attachments we form remind us that we are not alone. Thus, a support network in which we feel seen, loved, and wanted allows us to form healthier habits. We build more resiliency to difficult experiences and develop healthier coping strategies as we go through life with our social groups.

Moreover, as noted in an article from the Australian Journal of Psychology, a sense of belonging can have the following positive effects on your life:

  • Healthier social relationships
  • Improved mental and physical health
  • Academic achievements
  • Increased occupational success

Components for Belonging

Listed below, as the Australian Journal of Psychology notes, are four components for building belonging:

  • Building skills and abilities:
    • Relate with others
    • Develop a sense of identity
  • Opportunities for belonging:
    • Availability of groups
    • Remove enablers
    • Reduce systemic barriers
  • Motivations:
    • Desire to connect
    • A need for acceptance
  • Perceptions of belonging:
    • Address negative experiences
    • Self-confidence

Building Belonging for Mental Wellness at the Guest House

At The Guest House, we know attachments are important for our development and how we process experiences. We specialized in trauma-informed care like attachment trauma because we know early adverse experiences can impede your ability to build and maintain healthy relationships throughout your life.

Moreover, it can feel difficult to build a sense of belonging and seek out those deep bonds when trauma diminishes your sense of self-worth and self-esteem. Therefore, our philosophy is centered around reminding you that you are not less than others, you are not hopeless, and you are not alone. Through a wide range of holistic approaches to care, we provide the space and family you need to rebuild your sense of belonging for your long-term mental wellness.

Belonging is a fundamental human desire for connection and long-lasting bonds. However, when you lack a sense of belonging it can negatively impact your mental health. Therefore, building belonging with social groups is important for your long-term mental wellness. When you feel like you belong, it can lead to healthier relationships and increased self-esteem and self-worth. At The Guest House, we use holistic healing to support you as you rebuild your sense of self. Call us at (855) 483-7800 today.