What is a wholebeing practice?

by Alice Dommert
April 21, 2019
Three Worlds, Wholebeing

Wholebeing practices are habits of awareness where we train, create, heal and grow within each of three worlds—the mind, the body and nature.

It was an unexpected place that prompted the question. I had committed to a year-long nutrition program in the fall and in that day’s lesson was a link to a TEDx talk by Simon Sinek. I’d never heard of Simon but quickly realized this must be something good. This 2009 TEDx Puget Sound presentation, How Great Leaders Inspire Action, has over 43 million views to date.

Simon identifies the most important thing an organization needs to identify is what they believe. As we approach our ten-year anniversary, I’ve lost track of how many times we’ve talked about why we do what we do. We’ve evolved through three names. Simon’s message felt like an invitation to grab our shovels and dig even deeper.

 What did we believe?

We started thinking and writing. What had resonated for the hundreds of people who have attended our programs over the years? What did our client collaborators and other partners think? Each one of us looked at our own deepest calling to this work. There were many versions as we sifted and sifted to find the words that felt right.

We believe every person has the desire to thrive—to live a life of health, purpose and joy.

The word thrive to us means a life that is pulsating with energy, a fully explored life journeying through the vast abundance of possibilities. Thriving is a life of health that means being disease and addiction free AND the ability to celebrate living inside a body that knows and savors all five senses and beyond. It is the playfulness of running and dancing and climbing trees.

It is preparing and sharing good food with people you love. It is the joy of whispers and sweet kisses as you blow dandelions to the wind on a sun-filled spring day. A life where you thrive means having a clear sense of knowing how you spend your time matters toward the purpose and service of your life.

Is thriving possible?

Finding a life of health, purpose and joy sounds nice but is it possible? Maybe you’ve experienced more of the opposite of thriving by feeling pain, loss, anxiety, anger or sadness. Does this thriving talk sound all squishy and feel-good?

There are many things that we do not have the cure for today including Alzheimer’s Disease, cancer and many others. More research is needed and there are possibly many years before we will pinpoint cures and the origins of these diseases.

Thriving is different. We know how to do it. While a life where you thrive may seem unavailable to you right now, it is possible.

The groundswell of empirical science, studies with double-blind conditions that meet rigorous requirements conducted by top-of-their-field researchers, is firmly established in the fields of Positive Psychology, Neurology, Social Psychology, Biophilic Design and many others. The silos of research in these fields are being connected.

Reports like the 2019 Global Wellness Summit, continue to identify the trends with rich research and data to back their predictions. This year, two of the eight trends are Meditation Goes Plural and Prescribing Nature.

If one dog can yodel

We are perfectly positioned to make thriving possible for many people. And we’ve never needed this more than right now as attention is turning toward our mental and emotional health needs. People are seeking real skills and strategies that fit into daily life to shift their experience of feeling anxious, helpless and stuck to thriving.

In the world of positive psychology there is a favorite saying.

If one dog can yodel, then it is possible. So let’s study how that happened and learn how to teach other dogs.

Positive psychology is the scientific study or what makes life worth living. It is a study of what daily activities lead to the ability to flourish and thrive. At Prasada, our programs are based in the science and research of this body of work. At the core of this work are habits, routine behaviors done on a regular basis. But habits have become most generally perceived in our culture as being negative, an autopilot response or behavior that a person is not able to control.

Since our core offerings at Prasada grow from yoga and mindfulness, and I have my own connection to the practice of architecture, we’re more fond of the word practice. It differs slightly from a habit in that a practice is intentional and filled with awareness. We define a practice as a habit of awareness for mind and body.

We are your guides to help you discover, learn and live wholebeing practices—habits of awareness for mind and body so you can thrive.

We are your guides

Our team at Prasada is a consortium of explorers. Every yoga instructor, massage therapist, mindfulness instructor, nutritionist or acupuncturist on our team has traveled their own curious journey through practices to find what works for their own lives. From these explorations, each person then trained to master their skills in order to help you discover, learn and live wholebeing practices.

Whobeing practices

We’ve been talking about wholebeing since as we transitioned to the name Prasada and chose the tagline Wholebeing@Work. The word wholebeing means wellbeing of the whole person. Wholebeing means recognizing that we each live within three worlds—the inner world of the mind, the world of the physical body and the world outside which we call nature.

The world of the mind is the world that you make up inside your head. It holds the interpretation of your experiences, your stories, your thoughts, emotions and feelings, the ideas of love and fear and so much more. It can be a place of joy, curiosity and wonder or a place of terror, uncertainty and chaos. It is a place you create through practices like meditation, mindfulness, gratitude and breathwork.

The world of your body is the structure that serves to hold you together in the material world. Your bones and muscles provide the framework through which the systems for air, blood, information and energy flow. Your body is also the place where your mind and soul abide and the vehicle that moves you through space and time to experience life. Your body is honed to function optimally through movement, exercise and practices like yoga.

The world of nature includes all that is outside your body— the natural world of forests and birds, the sun, oceans and fishes, sand and soft moss. The word nature here also includes the manmade build environment that we have constructed for our survival and comfort as we live, work, gather and play. Staying close to nature as much as possible enhances healing, happiness and health.

Through the lens of wholebeing, we discover all three worlds are intimately connected.

Wholebeing practices are habits of awareness where we train, create, heal and grow within each of three worlds—the mind, the body and nature.

How you think affects the physiology of your body. How you care for your body affects how you think and how you shape and create the space around you where you live and work. The time you spend in nature, in turn, shapes your body and mind. It is all connected within each one of us and among our larger humanity.

A wholebeing practice could mean yoga, breathing, mindfulness, gratitude, eating slowly, walking in nature, making art, regular naps in a hammock or any mindful habit that is part of you navigating life so you can thrive.

I hope we’ll meet soon along the path. We have so much to share with each other. And the journey is so much more joyful when we’re on it together.

Alice Dommert

Alice Dommert

Founder, Wholebeing Architect

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