This week

Fight Clubs


Maria’s Midweek Mindfulness 


The Wednesday Whisper

Making time for conflict

Every year in May, David and I travel out to the Kalikalos network and bring our offering of the Dialogue Road Map. Kalikalos is a network of three sharing communities, each with their own personality while sharing  common values of authenticity, truthfulness, equality and contribution and providing holistic education in the form of week-long workshops which include communication, singing, yoga, meditation, art and culture.

In this community, the mix is even more interesting because it is a transient community. Operating from April to October each year in the Pelion region of Greece, there are only a handful of people who take full responsibility and stay all season. The rest come and go as volunteers, workshop leaders, workshop participants and facilitators. Each needing to find their place in the community among many hello’s and goodbye’s.

Wherever people gather there will be tensions, disagreements, differences in ideas and styles even when everyone is well intentioned. In this space, for the last four years we have brought different aspects of the DRM and its applications in community life. What’s rewarding is observing the different levels of resistance individuals have to dealing with conflict openly and the breakthrough when someone ‘gets it’ and finds resolution.

This year, my aim is to create safe spaces for difficult conversations that are built into the daily rhythms and not ‘slotted in’ as an optional extra.

One of the crucial parts of organising and the most overlooked is treating conflict as part of life and making space for it. Just as we have designated spaces with rotas set up to cook and clean, sleep and join in work and play, we need to create spaces for those conversations which everyone would rather avoid. In fact, many groups simply ignore conflict and live in what I call a ‘superficial La La land’ where holding someone or the system to account as a direct and confrontational communication is unwelcome whilst at the same time gossip, gang forming and side taking happens in the shadows.

Maria’s Midweek Mindfulness

I’m thinking about organisational change and the critical mass needed to reach a tipping point. In an ever changing community, finding the tipping point is a much longer process.

The Wednesday Whisper

Did you ever try to change a system? Even an internal one? How was it?

Would you be willing to send this out to anyone you think might be interested in getting a little dose of mindfulness each week?