conscious wellbeing for ourselves & our world
Once upon a time, large multi-generational families accumulated property and capital so that all
family members enjoyed both economic and social security. Though there is much political talk about family values, large families working for the common good are a thing of the past and perhaps a thing of the future. The problem is now. Now we have small, fractured families with no common purpose and little common interest. Individuals are becoming increasingly isolated in society. Is there some kind of social organization to provide us that which an extended family once did? It seems to me that interest based partnerships, clubs and associations could be practical substitutes for extended families. What argues against such informal groups is the lack of free time to pursue regular meetings.
The great irony is that group efforts could help free up time for the individual members. We can use single mothers as an example. One struggling single mother posts an ad on a neighborhood bulletin board or electronic board or local printed periodicals. She announces a new association to assist single mothers in their struggle and gives contact information. In a few weeks a group is formed and they schedule a meeting to discuss individual needs and ways they could work together to fulfill them. One makes a list of needs and proposed solutions. Meeting adjourns. Every mother gets a copy of the list to think about for a week or two and each has contact information for the others. Now the mothers have met others in similar situations and have shared ideas with each other and possibly offers of help. Each mother can now contact one or more of the others to discuss ideas for pooling resources, increasing incomes and free time. At the same time, the mothers can discuss the best ways to provide stability for the children without the need for fathers. Good father figures can be found for the group in due time, with mutual security coming first, eliminating dependencies on unreliable helpers/lovers.
Perhaps an early project for these mothers would be to find paid work that can be done at home a few hours per day. Perhaps they will decide how many could live together in a group home, reducing housing costs for all, leaving two adults in the home days to provide child care. If the mothers could find retired family members who would live in and assist them, so much the better. The idea is to create an artificial family that serves the purposes of the natural family.
Because these mothers may have been strangers to one another, unlike siblings, it would be good for them to get to know each other beyond superficial appearances. Personal astrological and numerological reports could be shared with one another, so individual differences are acknowledged and respected. Such reports could then be obtained for all the children. All mothers would then have a good idea of who each child is and their individual needs. If there are males involved with the group, their help could be valuable in making connections in the community and in direct support of the group, including child care.
Even if an interest based group does not live together, regular communication among members will help individuals find and avail themselves of opportunities otherwise lost to those in greatest need of assistance. Group members could physically meet as seldom as once a month and still provide a lot of help to each other, added to the regular informal communication between individuals.
New world corporations are beginning to organize their labor force into self help groups but I see voluntary partnerships as far more productive and flexible. Economic partnerships can pay partners far better wages or dividends than heavily regulated and policy oriented corporations. Management and
supervisory costs are minimized.
This is the Information Age. The U.S. manufacturing base is moving to where labor is cheaper,
regulation looser and taxes lower. There will be far less corporate employment and far more self employment. Individuals will have difficulty raising capital for start- up enterprises or expansion of
small, successful enterprises. Partnerships will improve the ability to raise capital and it is also likely that credit unions will be aggressively seeking small businesses in need of capital. As information grows in volume, organizing it is the wave of the future. Much of the work can be done at home, which is another rapidly growing trend among corporate drop outs. Reading and computer skills will remain in high demand; imagination and problem solving, likewise.
Instead of waiting for corporate jobs to become available, Americans should be creating their own jobs. We have been so dependent on others to do this for us; it seems like a very difficult task. It is not. Look first to your own personal interests. Choose any one or two about which you could be passionate. Ask yourself if when you have learned to do a thing for yourself, as with a hobby; who might pay you to do the same for them? When you have answered that question, let your potential
customers know your services are available. If you are struggling to find time to develop a small business, look for alternatives in lifestyle that reduce costs, time requirements and yields higher income for a given investment of your time. Ask the universe how to achieve what you want on a regular basis and the answer(s) will appear.
What partnership offers first and foremost is moral support and reinforcement. Find someone who shares your passion for an idea and discuss it with them. Don't worry that they will steal it and leave you in the cold. Anything you can think of can be improved and a potential partner may force you to do just that. Being first is good. Being best can be much more profitable. Partnerships can be re negotiated or dissolved any time they become unbalanced in their benefits. Beware of legal contracts which make it expensive for any party to dissolve a partnership not working well. Agree to simple, basic buy and sell out options that allow a reasonable recovery of invested capital -time or money. There is no need to create personal enemies from failed partnerships. Every failure is a life lesson and determination will bring you expandable partnerships working for all members.
Even solitary individuals can benefit immensely from limited partnerships where the creator maintains full control of business operations, if s/he is willing to fairly and promptly compensate partners.
Conscientious labor can be far more valuable than the cost of its employment, with skillful and imaginative management. This lesson has been lost on the corporate world, which sees labor only as a cost to cut.
Much of the American workforce is looking for just two things. Satisfaction with the work they do and fair compensation for it. Provide those two things and the fringe benefits for all will appear as if by magic.