One of the key components in human nature is thought to be cooperation. It certainly took teamwork for our early ancestors to survive, so group effort has proved its staying power. There’s a growing body of scientific research that confirms working together respectfully stimulates creative energy, boosts productivity, enhances communication, solves problems, and creates meaningful bonds.
Michael Jordon said, “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.” Bill and Melinda Gates are able to help people in numerous countries because they collaborate with people around the world. Kamala Harris, our new Vice President, acknowledges the contributions of all the people supporting her in her work for justice and equality.
Recently I was in a long double line of traffic at a red stop light. Behind us an ambulance siren started and I first thought it couldn’t possibly get through. Although we were packed together, each driver carefully moved as much as they could off to the side, creating just enough space for the ambulance to squeeze through. Without impromptu cooperation it never would have happened.
Teamwork matters because we’re interdependent. It’s needed in family life, work scenarios, neighborhoods, health challenges, financial planning, and government policies. Here are a few of the things we can gain when we work together. When we combine our individual skill sets, and brainstorm collectively, our diversity of thought helps us see a variety of solutions. Stress is shared which can help prevent burnout. We can learn from each other’s mistakes.
When we work together through our differences, using respect and compassion, our division doesn’t become divisive, it becomes a place where discomfort offers growth. Frans Johansson writes, “True success and breakthrough innovation involves discomfort. Discomfort pushes you to grow. This is where difference of experience, opinion, and perspective come in. Diversity is a well-documented pathway to unlocking new opportunities, overcoming new challenges, and gaining new insights.”
If we are working for the wellbeing of the whole, cooperation opens the door for us to see our blind spots and affirm out strengths. An attitude of genuine caring makes our work more efficient and productive, leading to satisfaction, and a sense of accomplishment. We become collectively responsible for our outcomes, so encouraging each other becomes a habit. Cooperation provides emotional support for each person involved.
This is where Friends After Diagnosis shines – the collaboration of caring individuals eases the stress for those dealing with cancer. As we all share our unique skills, with mutual respect, endeavors are encouraged and spirits are lifted. We are all living with ongoing changes ranging from individual, to worldwide. Working together is needed in every domain. Let’s meet this challenge for cooperation with boldness, integrity, and dedication. When we work together for a common cause, we are a gift to each other.
Here is part of a poem written by David White titled, “WORKING TOGETHER”
We shape ourself
to fit this world
and by the world
are shaped again.
and the invisible
In common cause,
Until Next Time – Sylvia