Coliving Cocktail #31

Hello you!

I'm not sure how you feel, but it seems to me that New Year's Eve was a few months back... as a lot of things happened!

Before we dig into coliving and community news, let me wish you a great 2021 and set the intention to be more in touch - on a personal and professional level, so please respond to my emails and let's interact - being close to you all is key to me in this upcoming year

And now, enjoy the cocktail slurp 😋

2021 Coliving News

  1. Breaking news: Quarters files for bankruptcy 😲

    Yes, you heard it right: the company that once wanted to raise one billion dollars just filed for bankruptcy.

    Why? In my opinion, three main factors: 1) a master-lease model which tied the company to have to release cash every month in huge amounts, because 2) it spent most of its funding into growth instead of becoming financially stable which 3) made it unable to tackle even the slightest reduction of occupancy due to covid-19.

    So, it's been true: we found the WeWork of coliving. I've already predicted bankruptcy in my recent "2021 Coliving Predictions" article, but did not expect this.

    How will that affect the industry? Most probably by scaring away investors into the lease-model, impact those that strive for revenue share, and benefiting those that are asset-heavy. In short, it will create the belief that "coliving cannot be profitable if the asset is not owned, as there would be too much risk" - at least for now, until operational excellence becomes a standard in the industry. 👉If you want my full analysis of what happened, listen to my voice notes that I shared with our community on Telegram (and where I share more details than in my Cocktail newsletter) 🎧
  1. Coliving Awards opens up for applications🏆

    Last year, when I was still part of the Coliving Ventures team, I helped build up the Coliving Awards ceremony. Today, I'm part of the main partners with Co-Liv and also the lead jury for "best community and user experience".

    I highly recommend anyone to apply to the Awards (!) - they will not only give key visibility to the winners, but also be a landmark for innovation and give you access to the upcoming Co-Liv Summit.
  2. DTZ Funds released their 2020 coliving report 📉

    My guess last year was that the COLIV fund, the world's first unlisted fund for private investors in coliving, would be mainly used to increase brand awareness while serving its main shareholder, The Collective. The report itself didn't impress me for a year of activity and for being the "largest coliving fund" - especially, because it lacks diversity in terms of coliving investment.

    Of course, let's not underestimate what one can achieve in 10 years, but don't stress out if you're running your private or family fund - there are so many different actors supporting coliving operators that are actually innovative in the sphere!
  3. 2021: Trends, Changes, Expectations in the Coliving Industry 📣

    I recently shared a little presentation on this topic in the first Co-Liv event of 2021, hosted by our French ambassadors Kelsea Crawford and Fabrice Simondi.

    The topic was around the future of coliving and especially the trends that we are going to experience this year within the industry. 👉 Read this post to understand my top predictions for the year, and please comment below to understand what you most agree and disagree with!

Human Dynamics in Coliving

This is a new types of series, in which I am going to focus on the core of coliving: human dynamics. All learnings are my own and I hope it inspires you to see how delicate coliving can be!

Last week, at the small coliving space I'm currently staying in Mexico, we hosted a small intention and sharing round.

What came out where a few "coliving truths" that I forgot about and wanted to share again:

👉Living in community is not easy and is challenging; especially, it teaches you how to set boundaries and how to communicate these.

Take the example that you're sitting at a shared table and working. Someone comes to you and starts chatting but you don't want to talk. What do you do?

You should be able to communicate that you don't have time in a way that is not violent and hurting the other, respecting your own need and not feeling weird in a social environment. But this is where many colivers struggle: they don't want to reject the other person out of fear of hurting them, which then creates frustration within and thoughts such as "coliving is not for me".

Learning: we need to learn how to better communicate and feel comfortable in respecting our own needs.

👉Which personalities will have a harder time in coliving environments?

We had a debate whether coliving is better for introverts or extroverts; actually, I believe that it's not the right debate to have. In fact, some coliving operators say that most residents are introverts.

I think that the issue lies in assertive versus turbulent personalities: for those who are still doubtful about themselves, living with others might let them think that they are being judged, although it is just their own insecurities coming up.

Moreover, in psychology, there is the term of the "agreeable spectrum" - how much a person tends to agree with others instead of telling their own truth (which usually leads to confrontation). Those who tend to agree a lot, out of fear of conflict and out of desire to be loved, will end up building internal resentment instead of being able to deal with their own emotions.

Learning: we need to therefore learn to be mindful about one another while also remembering that every trigger is our own insecurity being reflected in the world.

Updates on Co-Liv

At the beginning of this year, I gave a presentation with my Co-Liv partner in crime Cate Maiolini at RE:Connect, a big real estate conference (but not the biggest of 2021 - wait for the Co-Liv Summit!).

Since I became director of Co-Liv, the global association of coliving professionals, we've continuously grown with 105 events hosted, 45 podcast episodes, 20+ partners, almost 300 members, 37 ambassadors in 28 countries and 12 people in our executive team!

The highlight: we went from 1,500 people in our newsletter to 4,800 in one year - that's probably around half of the coliving industry that we reach with each email 🙌

Have a look at our presentation to find out about our key wins, how to get involved, what initiatives can serve you and our upcoming projects:

Co-Liv - 2020/21 Review, Collaborations and Announcements

It's been an honour to build up this organization alongside 50 individuals and organizations that contributed with their time and energy - thank you all 💙

My Favorite Discoveries

  • The book "Kinship in the City" 🌇

A book showcasing how cities can evolve and why they should. Highly recommend to read through it - especially, this image stood out to me:

  1. The "Coworkies" Kickstarter 🎺
    Led by four amazing humans who traveled the world and visited/interviewed 250+ coworking spaces, this book showcases major learnings on coworking, community and design - and reminds me a lot of what I've done with the coliving scene (and with my upcoming book Art of Coliving).

    I chatted to Pauline almost two years back and their journey was an inspiration for me to go out into the world. Highly recommend to support this project!
  2. A new guide on how to run a coliving space 🏡
    I recently found this new guide by Peter Farbor. And you know what? It's great. Similar to the guide from, it showcases key learnings from someone who has actually done it. My favorite part is the last section on "major mistakes", which I recommend eveyr coliving experience creator to read.

Some Personal Updates

My 2021 started with a lot of intensity and confrontation with reality.

I'd love to share two commitments that I made to myself while experiencing life in the Mexican desert, being confronted with dust, human emotions and life in its most naked form:

  1. I am not going to allow myself to get lost into negative spirals: whenever pain occurs, my default reaction will be do center myself and go through the challenging moment with intensified presence instead of trying to escape it. That also means that I've stopped smoking cigarettes (it's been three weeks now). Life is a bit more challenging, but way more rewarding.
  2. I am going to continue to optimize for personal well-being and positive emotions such as joy, love, gratitude, but won't loose myself in the process. In 2020, I got lost in my goal to be happy and tried too hard: it led me to feeling lost, frustrated, and unable to deal with my own frustration.

    This year, I am not going to commit the same mistake: while I will try to be my happiest, most caring and loving self, I will not forget that my own ideal is just a desire, and that not accomplishing that desire should not lead to frustration in the first place. Groundedness above all, and love above the rest.

Which reminds me of a quote that one of my coachsulting clients shared with me a few weeks back:

"Only optimize what you don't like. Don't optimize what you like doing - it takes the whole fun away."

And with that, much love from the West of Mexico (Baja California), where I escaped end of 2020 and joined a little coliving experience.

Wishing you all an incredible start of the year,


PS: If you have any thoughts on what you just read, please share them with me. And if someone forwarded you this email, you can subscribe to my newsletter here.

Housekeeping Links

👉Join the ArtofCo community on Telegram

📘 Sign up for the Art of Coliving book

🤓Read the latest articles and blogs

✅ Get 1-1 coliving consulting with me

🙌 Invest in your personal/work alignment

📝Respond to this email for further advice

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The Coliving Cocktail newsletter fills you twice a month with the latest updates from the coliving industry, major content pieces, upcoming industry events, and personal insights from our founder on how to improve your user experience.

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