Regeneration Nation Costa Rica | Community Living Agreements Training | with Jason Thomas
The Challenge has been completed, and replays are now available!
Attention Community Builders, Retreat Center Hosts, & Volunteer Managers…
Sharing communal space is better with clear agreements!
The live training is over, but we accomplished the mission!
This “Challenge” turned out to be more of a course,
not only on writing clear agreements, but on
cultivating better human relationships!
In this Community Living Agreements Training
you’ll learn how to write agreements in a way that’ll:
– Enhance harmonious interactions among your Members & guests
– Help your visitors feel more grounded upon arrival
– Reduce your repetitive responses to FAQs
– Improve your project’s reputation
– Earn the confidence of investors
– Reduce interpersonal conflict
– Cultivate common vision
– Conserve resources
Plus, get these bonuses when you purchase the replays!
– Each day’s training, edited down for smooth viewing
– Downloadable audio files for offline listening
– A PDF Workbook with prompts and examples to guide and inspire you through the journey
– Guest Presentations from Community Leaders around Costa Rica
– Access to a list of Agreements documents that I’ve been compiling from projects throughout Costa Rica
Meet our Guest Presenters:
Tuesday at 1pm CST
Thursday at 1pm CST
Wednesday at 2pm CST
Sunday at 1pm CST
What our attendees have to say
I appreciate having dedicated time to re-design how we interact with each other. It’s been an incredibly valuable commitment of time to reduce the grief and stress of sharing space. Lots to think about.
Thank you so much, Jason, for sharing your wisdom and experience with us. The community I’m joining has many of the warning signs you speak of, so your guidance is greatly appreciated.
I am learning a lot, I love your teaching approach, thank you. I am mostly absorbing as much as I can as I don’t have a project and have very little to no experience in communal living. This is mind-opening.
The CLA challenge for me has been a great source of inspiration. Since I am working right now in the same invisible structures and social agreement for my community.
The links provided are full of important collected info and make me feel that I am saving LOTS of precious time coming up (by myself) or a little group with what has already been created and written.
Also, Jason’s kindness and empathy toward all the participants (and the world) in collecting and sharing all of this valuable info in such a clear, efficient way! Again, very inspiring!! Thanks for all of that!
Looking forward to keep learning and sharing
Inform and educate!
Become the transformational center your guests and members are hoping to find.
11% of all sales go to support the reforestation efforts of Community Carbon Trees Costa Rica
– 5 lessons focused on document creation
– 1 lesson on creative delivery methods and ways to break it up to be more effective & enjoyable to read
– A bonus day guiding you through steps toward connection & cultural integration with your conventional neighbors
– And a Workbook to Guide you through the process!
“Community” means different things to different people
For the sake of this document, we’ll describe community in a broader sense, referring to those who share common space together, for days at a time, with the intention of connection.
This document describes the culture behind your program’s shared spaces. It’s a resource that builds confidence and a sense of grounding to people’s experiences. It helps them feel more involved and enhances their sense of welcome by the very effort of making clear their boundaries.
A more harmonious future awaits you
When everyone is on the same page, interpersonal relationships are improved. You’ll be able to have more time to put towards creation because you’ll spend less time with repetitive descriptions of things that people commonly want or need to know.
Life just runs smoother when the people you’re working and creating with (be they members, staff, apprentices, volunteers, or guests) already know the flow.
You’ll be known for it
As valuable as this practice is, few places have something to offer. Their resources often go more into their physical infrastructure than these finer details. But it’s these details that many of your guests remember most. It’s either that or being remembered as the place that clearly DOESN’T have their agreements in order. (And we already have plenty of those around!)
Having documents like this on hand increase the reputation and credibility of your project. When you empower people with information, they have more to share with others. If you’re looking for new members or investors, having documents like this in place can make or break their decision.
It’s time to get to it!
Here’s an overview of what we’ll cover:
Day 1 – Describe the big picture
Many people forget most of what you tell them as soon as you tell them the next thing. It can be disorienting for people arriving at a new location for the first time to remember everything said to them during their orientation (if they even got one.) By completing these exercises, we’re preparing to gift them a written copy they can refer to at their leisure.
We’ll start with your Mission, Vision, and Values statements and some other critical information new people will want to know to understand better the culture of the place they’ve arrived to. You may have these written already, but I’ll touch on a few points to help you clarify them to enhance their value from your guests’ perspective.
Day 2 – The customs & rhythms of day-to-day life
If you’ve hosted people long enough, even if it’s people looking for a project to join as a residential member, there are questions that you have to repeat to almost any newcomer that you talk to for any length of time. Is your project a single owner who “runs the show” kind of place, or do you have a team? Is your governance model worth informing people about?
On Day 2, we’ll review aspects of decision-making and teamship you might want to share concisely and why. We’ll also lay out some of the first information visitors like to know about to feel safe and grounded. You’ll find it’s an easy way to help them meet their basic needs without needing your direct attention.
Day 3 – Clarifying shared spaces & best practices
On Day 3, we’ll list resources people have access to and describe any limitations or restrictions that might lie on them. Tools, toys, cleaning equipment, etc., are all candidates for this list. It’s not just to tell people what they can’t use; it’s to help them understand what they DO have access to and the parameters around its use.
We’ll also add a bit about utility usage for things like water, electricity, internet, and roads. Don’t expect common sense details to be commonly understood (or even agreed upon, for that matter.) Anyone who’s ever shared their kitchen with enough different people will know that. The point is that many people (not all) release themselves from a sense of discipline when on vacation (or simply outside their homes.) The easier you make it for people to be on-point, the easier you make it for everyone.
Day 4 – Interpersonal Relationships
Customs differ from one region to the next (and even one person to the next.) It’s important to stay sensitive to that – better yet, plan for it from the start! On Day 4, we will plant suggestions into our guests’ minds for interacting with each other, staff, neighbors, children, pets, etc., more compassionately and confidently.
One of the easiest ways to reduce conflict is to proactively create a culture of harmony. While we’d like this to be something that people embody naturally, the reality is that the art of living with others, even temporarily, is difficult for some. This document is an opportunity to educate and inform. By identifying protocols for communicating needs and frustrations, we create a safer space for all.
Day 5 – Restrictions
Most of the things we’ll cover in the first 4 days revolve around preferences and protocols. Depending on how you’ve worded them, they can feel inviting and informative rather than a rule book of restrictions. However, some are clear restrictions, and you should be explicit about them.
Drugs, alcohol, and other substances are some of the first things that come to mind when discussing restrictions. Still, communication patterns are another item that sometimes needs to be spelled out clearly. Especially if there’s a chance you might ask someone to leave as a consequence of being what you might consider “abusive.” It’s okay to have conditions in the policy, like something permitted in certain places or times but prohibited in others. You want to give that some thought and make it known.
Day 6 – Delivery
Whether it’s digital or hardcopy, referred to, or required, you’ll want to make this available to everyone who comes. You’ll also want to encourage people to read and care about it.
Once it’s been read, what’s the best way to refer back to it when needed? How do we encourage people to read it in the first place? What are the consequences when someone breaks an agreement? It’s better to spell that out in a time of peace than in a time of conflict. How the uncomfortable news gets delivered is also an art we’ll discuss.
Day 7 – Agreements with our regional community
Now that we’ve created a safe framework for members and visitors to share space and resources more harmoniously, we’ll turn our perspective to our outer community. We’ll talk about a few ways we can cultivate understanding, connection, and agreement with the people in our village who may or may not share our ideals. The ones we share our roads with and our water supply. The communication flow we cultivate with our regional neighbors is every bit as important as that within our project’s gates.
We’ll also be raffling off prizes for those individuals who stay committed and endure the challenge of prioritizing harmony in their communally-shared space rather than leaving it all to chance. Day 7 celebrates the dedicated visionaries doing the work and making a difference.
About Jason Thomas
Permaculture Podcaster & Cultural Bridge Builder
As Creator and Podcaster at Regeneration Nation Costa Rica, I’m on a mission to promote & network regenerative projects in CR to enhance their chances to make a positive impact & thrive.
As a permaculturist with a background in business, I’ve begun to bridge ecologically-focused entrepreneurs with the 21st-century tools and business practices I’ve found useful in my own endeavors. To support this mission, I’ve begun offering entrepreneurial consultation to regenerative project leaders who are ready to take their ideas and organize them into executable businesses.
In 2009, I founded Finca Fruición in Pérez Zeledón and hosted several hundred volunteers, interns, and students, produced events, taught a little, and learned a lot.
After a dozen years dedicated to that land project, I’ve transitioned my focus to regional resilience and nationwide networking. The Sharing Insights Podcast was my first step along that path.
After a year of podcasting and understanding better the needs of that audience, Regeneration Nation Costa Rica was born to unite regenerative enterprises around the country to increase the impact we can make together.
Beyond that, I’m a father, musician, Thai massage practitioner, whole foods artist, and navigator of the mystery.
I’ve invited land-based project leaders worldwide to come together and do something foundationally beneficial for themselves and their projects, TOGETHER.
The mission has been accomplished, and I welcome you to receive the value as well.
More harmonious relationships await!
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