It’s hard to believe but everyone plays a role in their communities. This can be real or digital, everything can effect somebody in some way. I’ve spent a few days thinking on what a community actually is, it’s a bunch of people connected by having something in common.
I lead a community by writing on here. I may be bad at keeping up with it regularly but whenever I do it I give someone something extra to read, maybe creative, maybe an opinion but it’s there to be appreciated, commented on or just flicked past. I don’t set enough time aside for it but when I read I join other communities, even if only briefly.
The online gaming community is massive, some games allow for cooperation in different ways. Imagine the Let Me Solo Her guy that became famous a while ago. I’m not as skilled or active as the well known players, plus I don’t bother with streaming my gameplay but I’ll help when I can by dropping a Soapstone in Dark Souls or teaching some kids online how defence works in a strategy game. I never have to be the best but I’ll learn or teach as I’m able.
Real life though, it’s complicated. I volunteered at a community centre once but felt like I had little value there. For work I do retail stuff which puts me in direct connection to the public. This community is local people connected by location. I make things in front of them which takes a few minutes, some people fill the time by talking while others aren’t up for the interaction. Because of the open position of my work I find some people that just want to talk: lonely old people, parents that need brief relief and anyone that needs general shop assistance. I prepare food for people, ensuring quality as a job but somehow end up playing an important role socially for the people who come in. Don’t be rude to shop workers and please show respect because they could be the one that makes a family member feel better when they need it.
I’ve found myself in the last decade going from a fairly uncaring teenager who wouldn’t share into a young man who struggles to not care. It used to be that I took a cake home to eat it, now I take it home so the family can. Honestly, going through the experiences I have has changed my perspective quite a bit. Performing my different roles in life has changed my approach to the local community and it’s interesting more than anything. I do think I’ve personally grown, even pushing myself more when things get difficult.