Why a circle of practice? Why not a straight line of practice? Or a four square practice?
Our lives are lived on a continuum of spirit, mind, body, and emotions; of family, friends, and the larger community; of vocation, finances, and household management. All these things matter in the quality of our lives. If we let one of them blow up, it makes living well much more difficult and less likely.
The circle of practice is intended to reflect the importance of this continuum, and to encourage me to establish a “practice” in each domain so that I have a reasonable degree of competence and satisfaction in each of these areas.
A circle is balanced, with each point equidistant from the center.
You may not recognize the same domains in your own life, but we all have more than one role to play. Here is what I mean by each of these domains:
- Spirit: the faculty and activity of meaning making, purpose, and values; the source of our life vision and goals; the source of our faith.
- Mind: that by which we know and understand the world; the sources of our information, and the processes and structures by which we process that information and solve problems.
- Body: the flesh and blood vessel of our physical selves together with the care and maintenance of the same.
- Emotions: our physical reactions to thoughts and social interactions such as love, hate, joy, depression, compassion, and indifference.
- Family: our blood relations as well as relations by marriage, or people living under the same roof.
- Social: our friends, our colleagues at work and school, our community of faith, and political communities of city, state, nation, and world.
- Vocation: those activities associated with earning a living.
- Finances: personal finance, managing the household income and capital.
- Household: the care of children, preparation of food, and maintenance of the home.
My goal is to find an effective and efficient practice for each of these domains, practice regularly, and share them with you.