Every Monday, I’ll post about discovering genuine hope and authentic answers for living a healthy life.

Since Father’s Day is next Sunday, we’re reposting a blog from February 20, 2012. It will get you thinking about how healthy or unhealthy all your relationships may be and you can relate the ideas specifically to the relationship you had or have with your dad. If you’re a dad, would your children respond as the child I write about? Can you make changes? Should you? Will you?

The quality of our relationships – our belonging – can make us or break us. Belonging is the third of the five core needs we teach about at Celebrate Kids, Inc. It’s dependent on our security and our identity and it helps us find our purpose which leads to our competence.

When our relationships are based on trustworthiness, that shows up as healthy belonging. If we place our security in things, that shows up in our belonging, too. It won’t be as healthy because we haven’t prioritized people or found people worthy of our trust.

If we try to meet our need for security in our popularity, position, or performances, this influences belonging. And, it tells us something about our identity. Who are we? Popular, important, and able. Now, how do we enter relationships? Needing to be popular, important, and able to perform to convince people we are somebody.

Belonging should be about the people. Your comfort being together. Your safety in relationship. What you do together. A two-way street. A give-and-take relationship. I like you and you like me. You’re good for me and I’m good for you. I have fun with you and you have fun with me. We need to find these people to invest in and to have them invest in us.

A teacher friend of mine had her young students draw pictures titled, “I will always remember…” One boy drew a picture of him and his dad. My friend asked what special thing they were doing together and he answered, “Nothing special. I just like being with my dad!”

That’s healthy belonging.