I first learned of the Center for Partnership Studies through my employers - Harville Hendrix, Ph.D. and Helen LaKelly Hunt, Ph.D. - Founders of The Sister Fund and a new non-profit organization called Relationships First, based in Dallas, Texas.
Like the Center for Partnership Studies, Relationships First seeks to inspire a more relational world, where partnerships thrive, and everyone puts their relationships first. With this purpose in mind, Relationships First uses Safe Conversations® to empower people to talk without criticism, listen without judgment and connect through their differences. The practice of Safe Conversations strengthens the social, emotional and physical wellbeing of individuals, couples, families, friends and coworkers which, in turn, contributes to social cohesion and economic success of communities and cities
I’ll provide a brief history of this initiative, as it relates to my Caring Economy Project. In July 2010, a group of six therapists and their spouses were invited for a weekend discussion about collaborating on a project to translate their therapy systems and processes into educational curricula that could be distributed in the public domain. What began as a think-tank of distinguished relationship experts has grown into a dynamic group that has come together to catalyze a national healthy relationship movement.
For my Project, and to advance the work of the Caring Economy Advocates Program (CAP), I plan to share what I learned over the past few weeks with this dynamic and diverse group of change-agents, whom helped to launch Relationships First.
This group of 40+ people is comprised of top national leaders and influencers from various disciplines – therapists, marriage and relationship experts, business professionals and entrepreneurs, TV & media professionals, celebrities, scholars, philanthropists and social activists. Together, these individuals have broad networks, and the ability to reach thousands.
This group cares deeply about human social relations and the health of our society. I hope to add to this, a deeper understanding of the important linkages between the health of the family unit and the impacts on the health and wellbeing of the larger society. This group also recognizes that healthy relationships contribute to the economic success of communities. In sharing the work of the CAP, I seek to expand this understanding to include an appreciation for the work of caregiving, and how the gender relations within the home are mirrored in the macro economy, in politics and in the culture.
I will share the work of the CAP, through a comprehensive memo that includes an introduction to:
- Riane Eisler’s work & Caring Economy Conceptual Frameworks;
- Review of Social Wealth Economic Indicators;
- Public Policy Implications;
- Connect the dots between inequality within the family (gender relations) and inequality at the national level; and oppression within the home & social, political, economic and cultural repression.
I hope that this new and expanded understanding of this multifaceted work will translate into paradigm shifts – both within their own relationships, but also in their places of work, and in the other areas of their lives where they lead with significant cultural impact.
To learn more about Relationships First, and how you can become part of the movement, visit www.RelationshipsFirst.org.