The architecture of a healthy mind, body and spirit is a mindful practice. It is not happenstance. It must be intentional. What steps must we take to carefully craft our best lives?
We can look to other areas of life for inspiration. For example, Amsterdam has a brand new subway. It took decades of planning and it took 15 years of construction and teams of architects and engineering professionals from many disciplines.
A TV spokesperson stated that one of the stations was built offsite and floated on a canal to be installed in its permanent home. It was floated under previous canals and other obstacles. They turned engineering on its head to create the new stations and new delivery systems.
Imagine the brilliance of that particular decision! Architects had to dream it up and then prove to and convince their teams to accept the unlikely approach. Let’s imagine now deciding to create healthier lives for ourselves and our families. Most of us will look at what we eat and when we exercise. Most of us will not look at what we say and how we behave and what steps we can take to create peace in our lives and in our homes.
When architects and engineers and civil societies get together to create new physical spaces for populations, they all discuss how lives will improve when the project is complete. They have agreed upon goals. I am sure there are winners and losers in the final decision and still at the end of the day, everyone must accept the group’s decision.
If we decide to live peaceful lives within our families, we must also have common goals. No one individual can make sustainable changes within families. Neither can we coax or bride people into compliance. Everyone in the family system must understand why changes are needed and what is to be gained from enacting such agreed upon changes.
We need a team approach. As a team we need to decide on the goals we have and what resources we will devote to the changes. We need to keep checking our choices with how it lines up with what we set out to achieve. If we say we want to stop yelling and resorting to physical violence in our homes, we must find other options and teach the family team what new behaviors to enact. We must be willing to stop blaming others for losing our tempers and take full responsibility for our behaviors. Adults must act like adults and leave the tantrums to the children. Children have to be taught conflict management and how to make their case without losing their minds.
We must get help from professionals. We need a team approach. We must practice the new behaviors. We will fail and we must begin again. We must not resort to blaming and shaming. When architects create prototypes and test them, they use the information to make changes to better the end result. They don’t just shrug their shoulders and say “ oh well, we tried, we can’t change because this is who we are.”
It’s human beings with grand ideas who make life better for all of us. We can use this same brilliance to make our families better and happier and violence free. We can and we must if we hope to help the next generation be violence free.
Love and light