Co-Creating Life As A Family…x3 (Episode 292)
When it comes to your most intimate relationship, are you living side-by-side, completely codependently, or somewhere in between? Have you looked at your life as a co-creation, where each of you have a part in where you are headed?
As we wrap up the month of February and our focus on moving forward with our closest relationships, Nathan and I dig into co-creating at its best in the home - when it starts with a couple.
So what exactly is co-creation? Co-creation is what happens when two or more people collaborate together to invision, build and implement something. And it's a beautiful thing in a marriage.
When was the last time you and your partner sat down and really looked at where you were, and where you wanted to head?
There are three key areas where co-creation makes a powerful impact - not just in our own homes, but beyond.
#1 - Creating Together
The first step is really looking at what you two want to create together. This is the one that we easily think of.
Creating together is looking at how you want to move forward in relationship. We dug into The Go-Giver Marriage in a previous episode, and discussed the ways we can love one another through appreciating, attending, allowing, believing and growing. We're going to get into more with the growing later on.
First and foremost is this relationship between the two of you. Do you have dreams and desires you've discussed that are shared between the two of you?
How do you collaborate together to make things work? This often means openly communicating expectations and desires and clearly defining roles and responsibilities so one person isn't doing it all.
#2 - Creating Alone
Part of what you can bring to true co-creation is your own unique knowledge, insight and skill-set.
In the quest for connection and collaboration with your partner, don't lose sight of what you, personally, are bringing to the table.
Amazing co-creation takes the unique skills, perspectives and insights of two or more individuals - so what are you actually contributing?
Have you ever been in a business meeting where it's supposed to be a brainstorming session, yet everyone shows up looking to one person for every possible idea/solution?
It's incredibly frustrating to collaborate with someone who has nothing to contribute.
A huge reason why I collaborate with Nathan has to do with me wanting his perspective, insight, and skills to help me see things in a new light and tackle them more effectively.
I'm not simply looking to hear myself out loud. Every time Nathan and I read a book, visit with other friends, challenge ourselves physically/mentally/emotionally with some new growth opportunity - we are both bringing back new and separate experiences. These new and separate experiences make our own relationship more rich, as we share and recount what we have learned apart from each other.
It's amazing how, not only is there merit in learning and growing separately, it also deepens my own understanding of things as I look to recount a message or experience to share with Nathan. I'll see things in a new light once again, or Nathan will ask a question and I'll go even deeper with my own thought processing.
Yes, creating, learning, exploring alone does wonders for your relationship when you're willing to then share it with the ones you love.
#3 - Creating Outward
This is the other less looked-at concept, and a challenge for all of you. My parents have often quoted Barbara Bush, who said, "Your success as a family... our success as a nation... depends not on what happens inside the White House, but on what happens inside your house.”
And, while I agree that true change happens inward first - from a personal to a family to beyond...there is more to this than just keeping to ourselves.
What we choose to create as a family has a ripple effect way beyond us. The actions we take in our home contribute to a larger whole of humanity we must consider.
And so, as we co-create, we have to keep in mind the ripple effect of what we do - or don't do - and how it impacts the larger population.
While we focus on being the best we can be to show up in this world, our family is still making an impact beyond us with every choice we make.
It's in our stewardship of resources, it's in the way we vote, and the causes and people we invest in and interact with every day.
Be careful about putting your head too much in a hole and thinking it's just about you and your immediate family.
Your choices do make a larger impact. So yes, focus on yourself, your partner and your family...just remember the choices you make as a family and how you all approach the world at large is still making an impact that will ripple beyond this generation.
Imagine every family were stewarding their life and making decisions the same as you. How would our society thrive? What do you need to watch out for? How would our planet be impacted?
Look at these three key areas as you move forward this week.
Sit down with your family and take a hard look at your family vision - are you living by example the larger impact humanity will make in this world?
Pay attention to what you are co-creating with your partner. Are you purposefully fostering a relationship together, or just an existence? Are you carving out time to date, to dream, and to play together?
And look inward. How are you growing and challenging yourself? If you're looking to fully show up and contribute in your relationship, read some books like The Go-Giver Marriage, 6 Pillars of Intimacy, and/or How Marriages Succeed or Fail. Implement what you learn and add that to your relationship. Be the example of good health - physically, mentally and emotionally for your family. That means it's time to let go of the heavy and decide to lighten your load so you can move forward from a place where you truly can be present with others. That takes inner work.
Remember that co-creation is at it's ultimate best when we have individuals who are at their best. Start within. Then step outward and bring that charge to your family. Then, fully represent and show up in this big beautiful world as an addition to the beauty, and not something to work around. Celebrate the good, and remember, the uniqueness in each of us strengthens all of us.