Why I Became A Caring Economy Conversation Leader

Hummingbird photo by Mdf via Wikipedia, where there is partnership, there is life

Story is the most powerful force in the world. Like the singularity from which the Big Bang emerged, our story provides the core of our identity.

My story about who I am, the nature of the world, and my place in it deeply, and overtly, influences all of my thoughts and actions. Story can be made conscious and doing so empowers us to choose the path it follows and the outcome we experience.

This is true on a personal level and also true for an entire society.  Becoming conscious of its existence and potency enables us to shift our perspective and, effectively re-craft how story comes to realization in our lives. We create our universe – meaning, our point of view – from the stuff of our story and then proceed to live it out.

the chalice and the blade by Riane Eisler

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Over 20 years ago, I read The Chalice & The Blade by Riane Eisler. It catalyzed my view of the world and my place in it. Last spring, after learning that Riane was slated to be the key speaker at the 2015 Central Coast Women’s Symposium, I was inspired to look into her current work and discovered the Center for Partnership Studies Caring Economy Campaign, and its certification program to become a Community Partner & Conversation Leader.

Revisiting Riane’s work brought me back to an observation shared by Joseph Campbell, that our culture was in need of a new myth. The Chalice & The Blade explores the value of having a Partnership, or Respect, based cultural story. In one of Riane’s subsequent books, The Real Wealth of Nations, facts, figures, and, dollars and cents confirm the tangible benefits of living from just such a story.

The story of a Partnership Culture is quite old, and also for us, quite new. We experience the reality of this story every day, but often don’t know how to see it, or even to look for it. The Caring Economy Leadership training increased my understanding of this story and empowered me in sharing it.

A Caring Economy Conversation in SLO, Riane Eisler, Zette Harbour

A Caring Economy Conversation in SLO

Cultural transformation can begin with what, at first, may seem to be small shifts in our beliefs and stories. When I began my life as a storyteller, over 20 years ago, my motto was “Changing the world, one story at a time.” Becoming a Conversation Leader has given new depth to this idea. Sharing in this process ‘one story at at time’ enables me to contribute to what Riane has identified as one of the “four cornerstones” for cultural transformation – Stories, Beliefs and Spirituality. In combination with Childhood Relations, Gender Relations, and Economic Relations, these cornerstones “offer a blueprint of key leverage points for transforming our culture in the direction of partnership.”

As we endorse and implement Respect-based relations, our personal and communal well-being increases. Child, Gender and Economic Relations naturally acquire greater Partnership qualities. What began as a story becomes the reality of an entire society.

I became a Caring Economy Conversation Leader in order to shine light on and bring awareness to this very powerful, very possible way of engaging with life. Won’t you join me?


Riane Eisler, PhD is the keynote speaker for the Central Coast Women’s Symposium on March 14. The Symposium runs from 9 am to 4 pm.

Zette Harbour is presenting The Power of Partnership Culture through Cuesta College’s Community Programs. This 2 hour session will be Monday, March 23 from 6 pm – 8 pm. Register and learn more at Cuesta.edu.

Read more at:

Why Build A Caring Ec0n0my

Caring + Economy