Future Ready Co-Living Communities Initiative

 San Diego Future-Ready CoLiving Communities Initiative

November 28, 2013 at 9:36am

 “Despite current ads and slogans, the world doesn’t change one person at a time. It changes as networks of relationships form among people who discover they share a common cause and vision of what’s possible.”
— Margaret Wheatley and Deborah Frieze

My status update from November 27th seemed to spark something for people. This note is meant to expand and circulate the energy around creating a Future-Ready Co-Living Community in San Diego which started with a desire for:

” a co-housing setup with social entrepreneurs, futurists, hacktivists, progressive scientists, culture makers, and influencers who collectively and individually work on projects and partake in integral/collective insight practices…”

There is a lot of excitement around developing not just one but many  flavors of intentional community in San Diego and all over the world – it seems the time has come to move forward.

The landscape is prime for people to participate in the creation of these communities on a larger-scale than ever before.

  1. We have access to collaborative digital financing tools that we have never had access to before
  2. Social Media and sharing platforms allow us to communicate and share resources and tools as never before

Truly there are a multitude of “flavors” of co-living arrangements. A comprehensive list can be found from Venessa Miemes – http://emergentbydesign.com/2012/01/08/93-superhero-schools-collaboratories-incubators-accelerators-hubs-for-social-tech-innovation/#sthash.0Dybxfgf.dpuf and we are familiar in this thread with the Tech-Driven communities in San Francisco: http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Tech-entrepreneurs-revive-communal-living-4988388.php

So what is the secret sauce of the ideal community? And where is San Diego in all of this?

San Diego has a wide variety of communities that emphasize and actively embrace co-living. Here are some ideas of the varieties:

  • IDEA District and Maker Quarter  (in formation) – Including all the MakerFaire Peeps
  • San Diego’s Eco-Villages:

Several people and organizations have been experimenting and working toward communal living for many years and I’d like to acknowledge those efforts in our region, these include: Activated Villages and Emerald Village , Treekaya – part of the Transition Towns movement, LeCase EcoVillage, San Diego Eco-Village, Blue Sky Ranch and a new initiative called Boulder Gardens

  • San Diego’s Spiritual Community, affectionately called ‘The Community’ – this is a 1,000+ person community.

There are various home names: Bouncing Buddha, Moonlight Oasis by the Sea, The Den, Sanctuary, Fire Garden, Aum Dome, SkyPad, Ignite, Fusion Room, Whisper House and more…

In my time spent in the community  I’ve noticed an exquisite emphasis on relational practices and systems of influence (perhaps due in part to the confluent rise with Internet Marketers in our region). There’s no shortage of co-creation and collaborative endeavors between people!

In thinking deeply about the strengths of the community  and what it is that limits the potential of what such a powerfully connected community can be and achieve together a key differentiator of the co-living ideologies of the past and the ‘social labs’ being created can be summed up in this quote from Embassy Co-Founder Jessy Kate Schingler:

“We’re not trying to build isolationist, internally focused communes out in the middle of nowhere; we’re rebuilding cities”

I think this quality can come from one Key shift – the shift to seeing oneself as a Global Citizen.

What are the qualities of Future-Ready Co-Living Communities?

No matter what your personal “flavor” of communal living – be it eco-village, urban, spiritual, tech etc. there are a few keys that Future-Ready Co-Living Communities have in common:

  • A commitment to the betterment of humanity and a recognition of each member as a global citizen
  • Built-in self-supporting industries that makes the old system obsolete over time
  • Radical Opennness
  • A system of influence
  • The ability to improve living standards for everyone (Jacob Lucas-Schwartz)
  • A community of practice – Meg Wheatley article http://margaretwheatley.com/articles/using-emergence.pdf  (c/o Sheri Herndon)
  • A plan to move toward off-grid power and self-reliance
  • Shared communication networks

I’d like to pose a question to members of the community:

How do we create more engagement with the wider community and leverage our strengths in service of these Future-Ready Community ideals? How do we move toward a Future-Ready Community as a collective? What types of relational practices can we foster to bring out these qualities? Are these even the right questions?

Now for the all important question.

Why?

I alluded to a tool I’m developing… it’s a predictive analytics model to forecast the future career landscape based on emerging technologies to help people move through the economic transition. This project came out of one question. “HOW will this economic transition take place?”

Let this idea sink in: “We are creating technologies that could potentially displace the very consumer market that would purchase those technologies”

The next steps for this plan are being developed. Investors and Real Estate Developers are ready to support us in making this a reality. Money is not an object in this endeavor.

*Anyone who shares this note will be added to a group for early-adopters of Future-Ready CoLiving Communities*

The purpose of this group will be to:

  • Share resources about developing intentional communities
  • Strategize
  • Liaison with other intentional community groups

It’s clear we are ready for this.

When you share this note mention the name of the co-living space where you currently live (if you live in one) and let us know ONE thing… what’s your flavor?

If I have missed anyone that should be tagged, please tag them. If you want to email me personally you can reach me at mirona@ucla.edu

Resources:

View the Original Post Here: 

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Sometimes

SOMETIMES

Sometimes
if you move carefully
through the forest,

breathing
like the ones
in the old stories,

who could cross
a shimmering bed of leaves
without a sound,

you come
to a place
whose only task

is to trouble you
with tiny
but frightening requests,

conceived out of nowhere
but in this place
beginning to lead everywhere.

Requests to stop what
you are doing right now,
and

to stop what you
are becoming
while you do it,

questions
that can make
or unmake
a life,

questions
that have patiently
waited for you,

questions
that have no right
to go away.

– David Whyte
from “Everything is Waiting for You” & “River Flow: New & Selected Poems”
©2003 Many Rivers Press

Truth

It takes courage and strength to stand in truth. If we don’t practice with the small truths how can we get stronger for the big Truths? I am so grateful to have acknowledgement that EVERY voice deserves to be heard. Thank you to everyone who supported me in that. The TRUTH really does set us free and TRUTH at the Community level is even more potent!

Humility

Humility is very powerful friends. Intense morning – (re)activated patterns. When we move on and try to carry the pain with us – it creates a vengeful energy, need to be “right”, to prove, to show – that the cause of the pain wasn’t true. We pray, “oh God, don’t let them/him/her be right, it hurts too much” These are the dynamics that try to bring the “old” into the “new”, keep us trapped in old patterns and set up the perfect conditions for us to be humbled. The choice is… Do you want LIFE to humble you the hard way or, will you stay with the pain and cut through it with a humble and vulnerable presence… and rise…. from the ashes of needing to prove: society wrong, the bullies wrong, your family wrong? I know my answer…what’s yours? With grace and ease… I rise – knowing that I AM LOVE

3 Keys to Overcoming Anxiety

I used to suffer from severe social anxiety and panic attacks and have invested hundreds of hours into healing and finding various hacks to regain control of my life.

These have been the most helpful techniques I have used to recenter and remember that I am not that fleeting feeling.

1. Just because my heart is beating fast doesn’t mean my mind has to. Anxiety is really the fear of being afraid. When I had severe panic attacks and agoraphobia, I would feel my heart start to beat fast and my breath shorten, I would start spiraling out of control afraid that I wouldn’t be able to stop what was happening. After I had been practicing mindfulness for sometime I could notice the feeling coming on and deeply feel my heart beating yet still notice my thoughts didn’t have to start racing with the rhythm of my heart. This gives me some perspective and feeling of safety. This isn’t dissassociating, this is just watching. Mentally, I thank  my heart for beating and sending blood throughout my body.

2. Ask what are you telling yourself? Are you telling yourself frightening thoughts? Are you telling yourself that something in your life is a disaster or won’t work out the way you want it to? This technique really helps to become aware of the thoughts going on that could be triggering the anxious feelings. If I am aware of the thoughts this is effective. I use technique #1 when I am not aware of what thought I had that resulted in the physical reaction.

3. This technique is the MOST helpful and typically just melts away the fear. I mentally tell myself,  “I have this anxiety because I care about people so much and want their love and attention”  this has the effect of melting the fear and  exposing it for what it really is- love and caring. If you look deeply you will realize this is the source.

You won’t hear these techniques written/spoken about because they are from different sources and deep insights I have had of the way my mind works and how my body and mind interact.

Offering support

One of my favorite things to do is surprise people with willingness to help and support. To offer help in an area where I know the person needs support and has a hard time asking for it. What stops me at times are 2 things

1. Being afraid that they will then EXPECT that of me all the time and I will be over-committed.I can give more when I release myself from the pressure of that expectation and give myself the right to say ‘No’ at anytime after that. I wonder if this holds other people back from giving sometimes too?

2. When I offer that level of support I also have to let go that helping people freely when they need it doesn’t guarantee they will be there when YOU need it. So I do as much as I can until I feel a resistance within myself. I often reflect how many people have their cause they want support on but how we also want support on our stuff. It’s truly an art that I am still mastering.

When was the last time you surprised someone with your willingness? Without asking to be paid for ‘coaching’ or your ‘webinar series’? Today – see if you can put your concerns of not being reciprocated and let go of the fear that you will become over-committed aside for 5 minutes. Take 5 minutes to give even just 1 honest opinion/feedback – admit that thing that you haven’t wanted to admit, say that thing that is rolling around in the back of your mind or heart.

To illustrate: I was recently approached online from someone I don’t know to go on a date. After a little chit chat I could feel that he was so lonely. Instead of being turned-off or pushing him away with some retort I just wrote “Why are you so lonely?” He was surprised but delighted because indeed this was true. Playfully he writes “Who asks people that the first time they talk?” I said, “The question is: who has time to waste?… that should be the norm – not pretending we don’t sense things.” From that place we could have a more meaningful conversation

Of course there is always the risk of being inaccurate in what we sense – but that’s the risk of authenticity – the unwillingness to live life on the surface any longer.

Give

Do you try to give to people that don’t give back to you and then ignore the people that do want to share with you? yea… me too! It’s called codependency and it’s ok! just sayin… I notice I do this and I’m like “WHY!?” – but… I have gotten much much better since I’ve started “Going (giving) where it flows” -if you find yourself stuck… hear me saying: “Give where it flows baby” – people that want to regenerate/reciprocate and flow WITH you. The thing is…. when we make someone’s ability to reciprocate or receive from us mean something about us (I’m unlovable, I’m not good enough.. blah blah) that’s when we get hooked! And then we try to change them – but really we don’t want to change them, we just don’t want it to mean what we think it means about us… 🙂 So:

1. QTIP – Quit Taking It Personally , the person’s ability means nothing about you

2. Just feel your own feeling – remember just because someone abandons you doesn’t mean you have to abandon yourself. Someone may not be able to be as present with you as you would like, the moment you notice yourself feeling bad about it, just give yourself a big hug and affirm you are still there with YOU and then it’s easier to let go and accept what the other person is willing/able to receive.

3. Notice when you get attached to the outcome or feel resentful or angry – this means your cup is runnin’ low honey! Go fill up – laugh, dance, play banjo- whatever you need to do to fill your cup… (but not with addictions) -sometimes, it’s just … letting go of trying.. and- “Give where it flows”

4. Remember, it’s a GIFT when you ALLOW someone to GIVE to you
Then … RECEIVE… work in progress. Have a fantastic day =)

Celebrating Men, Satisfying Women

Just before going to a 10-day Vipassana silent retreat I took the PAX seminar “Celebrating Men, Satisfying Women”…

The flavor of the course seemed like a sophisticated etiquette course… and the workshop leader seemed like an uptight sorority girl, lecturing us as we are little kids on her boundaries for an hour before the course began!b There is a huge difference between setting boundaries to control people vs.  Despite these initial impressions I came to the workshop to learn how to be more empowered in my interactions with men. I wanted to stop self-abandoning and stop giving up my power with men through feeling guilty even though I did nothing wrong or feeling responsible for their experience.

Upsides

It’s really valuable to give up this idea of men as “dysfunctional women” and just enjoy them for their own merits. To know how to ask for our needs to be met in a way that men understand, to respect, and honor men and to realize it doesn’t help them, us, or our relationships to make them feel inadequate because they have another way of listening and understanding.

Downsides

1. Stone age view of men’s emotions with ideas that “the way men are” is they don’t:

– Trust their emotions as a source of information

– They believe their identities are their values, not their emotions

3. “Posts” or values protect men’s hearts and we attack their “posts” they feel attacked. Examples used in the class of men’s “posts” – football, video games,  and beer… WOW

4. Validates men, while invalidating women; women come to the course feeling disempowered around men and that makes it difficult to jump into appreciating men.

5. Many important topics/ questions not addressed.

– Values conflict with how men “are” – what if my values like open communication, sharing emotions, and connection conflict with this idea of how men “are” (which I don’t buy)

6. Men develop Crohn’s disease and other psycho-somatic diseases from repressed emotions. How can we just accept them as not communicating their emotions when potentially they could get sick from this!

There was not enough emphasis placed on Women’s Empowerment and it made it difficult for some of us to move wholeheartedly into the oath to give up “castrating men forever”

What I learned

I can’t believe the PAX course is the  MOST progressive course we have for women to understand men. I think it undermines men, our men are capable of much much more. I recently started listening to podcasts by Robert Ohotto, the guy is great and really highlights the problem, especially this podcast