Your Six Dimensions of Whole Person Health & Wellness

Let’s Get Physical with Your Whole Person!

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Again, to pick up again on the dynamic interconnection and complementary behaviors of multi-dimensional whole persons, let’s get physical with your whole person!  Seems a bit off the wall, but I’ve written about, and taught college and university courses on THIS INTRIGUING CONFIGURATION of we humans, for well over 35 years.

Each time I resurrect the model I am reminded it is as universal as the air we breathe and the water we drink, because at its core it remains grounded in the same basic approach to recognizing the importance each of the six dimensions our multi-dimensional whole persons plays in creating a dynamic and exciting life!

As we go through this six-step series, free your imagination when it comes to blending of your:  1) physical bodies; 2) minds; 3) social inclinations; 4) spirituality; 5) environmental awareness and inclinations; and 6) intrapersonal deeply personal and oft-private selves!

So, let’s get physical knowing it’s become fashionable and trendy for all sizes and shapes of women and men to drape much of their “lives-lived,” “lives-hoped-for,” and “lives-in-chaos” on their physical bodies by how they’ve retrofitted their bodies with clothing styles, refreshed their bodies with tint-tone-tummies & tuck, and, okay yes these are a matter of personal taste, accessorized their bodies with tiny to elaborate tattoos and other partial or total sub-cutaneous “fashion” statements.

As much as I’ve wondered aloud about the whys and why not’s of tattoos, I noticed a detailed one on my dental technician’s arm today.  She had gotten it as a tribute to her younger nephew who had served as a U.S. Marine, and been killed in Iraq.  She wore it with pride; it changed my mind about tattoos; they are still not for me, but they may have a special meanings to others that easily eclipse my objections!  And I say, Amen!

This series of six posts is not intended to scrutinize or evaluate every facet of each dimension (I’ve not even tried that in several books I’ve written where I discussed the six dimensions), but I’m sure you, as reader, will leave with a keen sense of where you’re headed to becoming better at blending the six dimensions of YOUR MULTI-DIMENSIONAL WHOLE PERSON!

 Don’t be insulted, and don’t view this as over simplification, but the most visible testimony to your state of the physical health and well-being is reflected in the following clarifying points:

  1. You are what you eat & drink – get down with this point; it’s very clear that the foods you consume and beverages you drink affect the performance of your body; as is it true that the foods you should consume but do not (or beverages you shouldn’t drink too much of, but do) also affect the performance of your body.
  2. Don’t be misled by quantity and type of food & drink – concentrate on nutrient intake, including calories from carbohydrates, calories from fats, and calories from protein; and do not sidestep the importance of the balance of vitamins and minerals in the foods you eat. The key to this nutrient know-how is committing to self-study for a month, and then choosing your favorite “nutrient guide” book and giving it a prominent home in your kitchen. After you’ve learned to use this guide to identify the relative nutrient values in foods and drinks, you’ll actually find that you’re really “pretty smart” when your body’s hungry & getting physical!
  3. Bodies are made to house our internal organs, indeed – but bodies are also made to move and to perform coordinated muscular-nerve related actions that we should be able to do powerfully in both more subdued, controlled, even confined environments (e.g., lifting weights, or doing yoga and stretching in hotel gyms while traveling), and boldly and explosively in public (e.g., participation in adult sports leagues, triathlons, cycling or running competitions, etc.).

That snapshot of getting physical was hardly fair, was it?  I hope you get my point: there is a great deal more to the dimension of your  physical bodyTake a moment to do a short inventory of what’s happened to your physical body since you got out of bed this morning…

We’re very fortunate to have these bodies, and all that impact them.  Take a moment to think about what you’ve done to damage it; then honestly ask yourself if you have the desire to reclaim the potential you still have of getting physical and paying attention to what your body is telling you about how you put it through the paces of your life.

Listen to what your body is telling you through how it feels, how easily it is injured, or how quickly it heals.  When the fatigue sets in, listen to its call for rest.  If that’s not possible, you might want to take a break from the world you created for it!

BUSINESS SMARTS & GOD SENSE! …from the sidelines by Dr. John Yacenda

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Where is the Holy Spirit in Your Life?

When preaching about the Holy Spirit and most matters of Christian faith as these apply to life today, I would customarily begin by citing a passage of scripture, and then expounding on its interpretation and application to life in today’s world (Seminary 101).  Don’t peek, but the scripture upon which this blog is built is nestled at the end of this brief exploration of God the Holy Spirit’s work within you!

At first thought I wondered aloud if the Apostle Paul would go along with my description of him as the Holy Spirit’s “Oh, yeah, I get it” guy for Christians the world over who would each read his careful transcription of the Holy Spirit’s message, and upon recognizing the central role God the Holy Spirit would play in each one’s life, say simply, “Oh, yeah, I get it!”

So, do you get it?  Paul had spent three years with the Christians of the Church at Ephesus, and as far as he was concerned they were doing fine, but don’t most things need a tune-up, polish, spruce-up, re-alignment, recalibration, ad nauseam?  Most of us welcome periodic contact from those we love; just imagine the people of the Church of Ephesus whose love was returned by Paul with expressions from the Spirit of God on how to nurture and maintain unity of the church – a church that was living and growing; one family in Christ!

When I type this I cringe, go off the record, and ache a bit for how messed-up we’ve become as a – SAY WHAT – civilized society!

And now, well over 2,000 years later, we are exhorted by Paul’s words to follow our spirit within (who communicates freely with the Holy Spirit), and to recognize our old self is subject to corruption, or already is corrupted, while our new self is being created and regenerated.

Think on this for a few moments: In my studies of “self-corruption and regenerationI’ve had many Oh, yeah, I get it!” moments thanks to Paul’s transcriptions of the Word of God, and my lively relationship with the Holy Spirit.  HERE’S WHAT I POSIT: The Holy Spirit actually provides timeless opportunities for regeneration pegged to our conscious lifetimes. 

When it comes to the creation of a new” self, the Holy Spirit “referees” the process from the moment we accept and recognize our old self is corrupted, as influenced by deceitful desires, through His influence for us to embrace the true righteousness and holiness of God!

Ah, but don’t miss this: your regenerated “new” self REMAINS A TIMELESS OPPORTUNITY – that is, it’s yours to choose to embrace or to again lose.  Such is my Posit, and I welcome any and all discussion, interpretation, theological debate, and possible application YOU might want to offer.

The Holy Spirit is willing if you are willing to inspire you anew with the revelation of God as holy and perfect …to give all of us inspiration to lift ourselves to new heights.  What’s really exciting about this process of regeneration is the emergence of a new attitude in our thinking where we don’t develop God in our image, BUT ARE OPEN TO GOD REVEALING HIS IMAGE TO US!

Paul in shorthand: put away lying; speak truth with all; anger becomes sin when held onto; never invite the devil to come around as he’s always looking for a way to create evil & destructiveness.   As Paul wrote in Ephesians 4:23-27(KJV) 23) And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; 24) And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. 25) Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbor: for we are members one of another. 26) Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: 27) Neither give place to the devil.

Mature Mind & Creatures of Evil

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Am I Crazy…or Just Wild & Untamed?

Think about this for a moment: “mature mind” is a concept I used for probably 30 years without too much challenge.  Then, along came life with its litany of horrors and craziness, and we found all kinds of hipster, New Age ways to endure and somehow get to the point where we “accepted it all” and called ours, a civilized world.   Please (yes, I am dating myself), don’t be envious of me for having the time and profession to have talked with and counseled a good many of the perpetrators of this same claim to civilized living, because during these forays into this civilized madness, I met the “source” of the horrors and craziness – “creatures of evil” residing quietly, without gender in vulnerable men and women of all ages!  

I won’t name names, but you can fill in the blanks as you see fit.  How do we account for such behavior, and what if it expresses itself in the workplace?  Think of these “creatures of evil” residing between your ears, and having the authority to ignite a passionate desire in you to behave like a wild untamed animal! 

One of my mentors during my early years of training in psychology in general, and psychotherapy in practice was Ronald Laing, M.D., a British Psychiatrist who was to me, an inspiration, while to many of his older medical brethren, he was a mad man.  He would have characterized my “creatures of evil” a bit differently, but I think you’ll get my point from his work in 1967 (The Politics of Experience – Ballatine Books, p.55) 

“Torn — body, mind, and spirit — by inner contradictions, pulled in different directions.  Man cut off from his own mind, cut off equally from his own body — a half-crazed creature in a mad world.”

Go ahead, boo me…because down deep inside of my psyche, Dr. Laing has a “guest house” and his door is always unlocked!  So what I’m going to tell you next, comes with the support of my guest; here it is: Understand, that as civilized modern man/woman, you live in a world in which the “normal stimuli” is enough to drive you to appear in mood to be a raving maniacal wild Chimpanzee, while at another not too distant moment on the very same continuum to be seen as the epitome of  the model of civilized “mature” mental health!

Our creatures of evil don’t care too much about your public persona, and they’re not likely to interfere with your day to day decisions and value judgments, although they are fond of tampering with your choices of right and wrong, good and or bad, helpful or not in various situations which are more clearly mental health moments than anything else.

Charming, isn’t it?  Do you have some strategies to frustrate the “creatures of evil” lurking within?  Here are two of mine, the first being my favorite, the second being a pain in the rear!

  • Get up early; stay up late; challenge yourself to a cold weather walk; put on some of your favorite music and crank up the volume!
  • Do you need to “show off” about anything?  Do it, knowing you have a critic housed squarely between your ears ready to kick you in the pants…but just can’t figure you out!

BUSINESS SMARTS & GOD SENSE! …from the sidelines by Dr. John Yacenda

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Here’s an indefatigable truth about Love Wisdom: if you have LOVE in your heart, you are primed to do things that are generally positive; your expressions of love are genuine, and your inclination is to stand firmly in opposition to those things your “love wisdom” instinctively reveals are destructive and deceitful about, to put it bluntly, phony love!

When your “love wisdom” prompts you to maintain justice in your dealings with others, it is tempting to attribute the solid foundation of your love to a ready source of “values clarification” you’ve long relied on, or under which you have matured as a woman or man.  Of course, the minister in me knows this “ready source” as God’s Word as written in the Bible.  Your source could certainly be another source, even a role model in the form of a beloved aunt or uncle who was for you an important, even essential, source of wisdom that helped shape your emotions and interpersonal relationships as you grew up.

        I’m always (yes, always) asked about how God views wisdom in general, because it’s more than just “love wisdom” right?  Of course, the Ordained Minister in me loves this question, because I actually have an answer I’ve used from the pulpit on a number of occasions: Simply, God used the Old Testament (I’m referencing Proverbs 16:17-21) — essentially the pre-Jesus religious history of man, to craft what I teach as God’s ABC Wisdom:

       1. ACCEPT that it is profitable in using the wisdom of the Book of Proverbs, for example, to guide your steps as you walk of love, justice and fairness in your life;

       2. BEGINNING TO END it’s about placing your trust in God by HUMBLY SUBMITTING to His Word;

       3. CONFIRM YOUR WISDOM by always returning to the Old Testament scriptures to verify the wisdom God has given you through His Word!  And as your comfort grows, you can apply this to the Gospel of Jesus Christ in the New Testament!

Do you have to be a Christian to use God’s ABC Wisdom?  It’d be tough to humbly submit to His Word if you were not a Christian.

  Here’s how the ABC’s of the scriptural teachings in this section of Proverbs could be translated into living in today’s world.  Try these on, see how my summaries fit, and let me know what you think!  Write me, and we’ll post your question and my answer so others may learn as well.  If need be, however, we’ll work on your issues privately thereafter.


       — Live upright; you know what God asks of you, do it! Be proud of who you are, but not prideful (see #2) Expect your path to be free of obstacles that would normally defeat you.  Your upright path helps you to avoid moral evils, but doesn’t extinguish them.

       — Recognize destructive pride is blind to reason, self-centered, and ignorant of social responsibility — this kind of pride leads to weakness instead of strength, and you’ll find it difficult to be fair and reasonable.  Step out of yourself; take a holiday from being judgmental (see #3).  You know immediately when you’re headed down that path.  Stop!  Turn around…

      —  Submit to others respectfully by acknowledging their contributions to life; give others a chance to be themselves free of your judgment, and see/feel what they have to offer! In return, I guarantee they’ll receive more of what you have to offer!

To Heck with New Year’s Resolutions: Let’s Commit to FULLY EMBRACING Our 12 Life-Living Tips!

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12 Life-Living Tips were presented last week in my Blog as an introduction to positively framing our work and life experience.  I received enough confirmation from colleagues that this was a needed mindset and behavioral orientation that I agreed that for the first six weeks of 2016 beginning January 11th, I’ll elaborate on two of the Life-Living Tips in two separate Blog Posts each week.

So again, here are the 12 Life-Living Tips.  Here’s your challenge (to heck with New Year’s Resolutions): 1) speak these Tips into your life; 2) incorporate these Tips into the fabric of your thinking; 3) truly believe in the power & authority in these Tips and learn to incorporate them in your repertoire of personal expressions In all, you will build an ethical foundation from which to embrace these Life-Living Tips as you assess and respond to the world you perceive and create around you!  Rah rah – lets’ get started!

Life-Living Tip #1 Identify for yourself your errors and mistakes in judgment about others you’ve wrongly harmed or cast doubts upon — do it weekly, even daily.  Make the habit of self examination routine, and when appropriate, pin down the percentage of these actions that are or closely resemble “ego burps” of your own.  Recall from the original Blog Post: the meaning of oral flatulence, or more simply, ego burping is all those times you try to explain yourself by casting yourself in the best light possible, or excusing your errors as tiny lapses of good sense.

Life-Living Tip #2 Acknowledge your mistakes in judgment about others to the persons directly.  If that’s a bit too tough to begin with, share the memories of “those times” with trusted others, not to be haughty, but to be humble before other men/women.

Life-Living Tip #3 Take “wrong” patiently, by carefully and deliberately responding to unjust accusations and actions of others toward you, using the strength of your renewed character.

Life-Living Tip #4 Actively submit to authority, whether good or bad, and as you do recognize those in authority over you, are yet under the authority of others in higher authority — you’re just one small part of the big picture!

Life-Living Tip #5 Receive correction and feedback from those in authority over you, with grace and dignity, recognizing there is almost always a kernel of truth in what those in authority offer you, even if they seem to be coming from a dubious source.

Life-Living Tip #6 Don’t hesitate to accept a lowly place at the “banquet table” and attack your pride of wanting to be asked to sit at the head table and be recognized (the lowly place is the place of humility).

Life-Living Tip #7 There is personal value in purposefully associating with people of lower status than you; resist the temptation of being partial to those with status and wealth.

Life-Living Tip #8 Choose to serve others when given the opportunity; helps you to reduce the focus on yourself.

Life-Living Tip #9 Be quick to forgive by acknowledging wrongs that have been done against you and leave it at that; release the human desire for repayment for the wrong.  Forgiveness is denial of self; forgiveness is not insisting on YOUR way and YOUR justice.

Life-Living Tip #10 Cultivate a grateful heart that espouses an attitude of gratitude for the beauty and vitality in your life, remembering a grateful heart is a humble heart.

Life-Living Tip #11 Make it a purpose to speak well of others, complimenting them, building them up instead of yourself.  Flattery, however, is misleading and often driven by selfish desires.

Life-Living Tip #12 Do a second take on your level of pride; it is your nature to be proud and it is your understanding and appreciation of fellow man/woman that brings you humility.