Healthy relationships are at the core of healthy teams, institutions, and communities. Conscious Loving is primarily a book about healthy individual relationships at the individual level. It is a book about getting in our own way, being at the source of our own reality, and practices for creating co-committed reationships.
The thing is, as I read the book – I couldn’t help but think about my life organizing. I couldn’t help but think that my teams had been dysfunctional, often mirroring relationships at the individual level. Sometimes, one person on a team took up too much air time. And every other single person on the team had made the unconscious agreement to let them. Sometimes, one teammate did all the work, in an effort to control or make sure it turned out perfect. And every single other person on the team allowed that person to take responsibility for their work.
Conscious Loving outlines 7 co-commitments to building health relationships. My favorites are committing myself to my own development, comitting myself to the full empowerment of people around me, and committing to having fun in my close relationships. It seems like a crazy idea – both for our relationships but also our work. Imagine believing that our intimate relationships should be easy or that economy-shifting, life-changing work could be fun. We’re often stuck with the idea that relationships AND our work should be stressful, difficult, effortful, and painful. We are so familiar with dysfunctional teams – what beliefs do we have to invest in to make our teams work?