What Concerns You?
Human concerns, we all have them, we all strive to take care of them. They vary, depending on the circumstances, people, and events in our lives. But life will always give us concerns to take care of.
Dr. Fernando Flores, an icon in the Ontological coaching profession, gave us 13 Permanent Domains of Human Concerns. I share these with you in no particular order, as what is a primary concern for you today, may not be tomorrow, and concerns vary by person as well.
Following are Dr. Flores' 13 concerns... with my comments included.
Body: Although we are spiritual beings having a human experience, our experiences come through our body and our senses. The body is our fundamental source of power and capacity to live a good life. If our body is not functioning well or at full capacity, it compromises taking care of all of the other concerns.
Spirituality: Flores defines spirituality as the group of concerns that focus on human acceptance of life "facticity's", in essence we are going to die, how do you deal with death. Let's go beyond his definition. Spirituality is fundamental and core to our existence. It would include religion, although religion and spirituality are two separate domains. It is knowing and living from the fact we are spiritual beings having a human experience, not human doings or human havings. In spirituality we find our essence, our reason for existence, and our purpose in life.
Family: the people we live with (or not) and share an ancestry with. Living and caring from them is often becomes a practical necessity as much as it is an existential concern.
Work: (I love Dr. Flores' definition of work) He defines work as actions people perform to take care of their concerns, especially to earn a living or make money in order to buy the goods and services everyone requires to survive, be free, and live a good life.
Play: Unselfconscious activity essential for rest and refreshing our capacities to think and act effectively, and to be able to take care of our concerns. In a world of more, better, and faster, forever striving to get someplace... and that someplace, somewhere, someday, is elusive. Play and recreation is critical to one's well-being. It is also a great domain for introspection. To stop or slow up, and reflect on your life, on your concerns, and tap into your inspiration.
Sociability: Our capacities to form healthy and productive relationships with other members of our community for the sake of communication, learning, production, coordinating action, and transacting for goods and services needed to take care of our concerns.
Education: The practice of learning discourses of moods, distinctions and practices needed to think and act effectively, strategically and competitively enough to fulfill our intentions to survive, be free, and to live a good life. Notice how Dr. Flores included moods? When was the time you saw moods and emotions as a course in a high school or college?! Yet they are critical to how we show up in life, how we interact with others and the results we get in our lives. And in today's most uncertain, fastest changing, world, how important it is to be a lifelong student... in whatever interests you. If you aren't growing, you're dying, there is no plateau.
Career: This is your public identity used to build networks and make money in the marketplace. Your chosen profession or career. But Dr. Flores goes beyond this to include having superior trustworthiness, value, authority, and leadership in your profession. Trust is sorely lacking in today's society. You truly set yourself apart, above, many people when you demonstrate trust... which takes time to establish. With trust in place, you bring value to the table in all you do. You become a valuable person, people want to be around, because they know they can trust you. Building on the foundation of trust you now have authority. Not authority over someone else but rather authority in your word. And finally, leadership. When people trust, value, and listen to you as a person with authority, leadership now becomes a natural out picturing in your life.
Money: The capacity to transact for help (bold and underline added)- goods and services - (you may want to read this again!) that everyone needs to fulfill their intentions to survive, be free, and live a good life. Money is beyond currency. It also includes gift-giving, barter, favors, and trade.
Membership: Belonging to a group, society, community, or association for the sake of accumulating knowledge and power to take care of your concerns.
World: Acceptance of the fact that we live in a constellation of circumstances, interpretations, and traditions with which we must cope in order to fulfill our intentions. Let me expand Dr. Flores' definition. World: we are all one expressing as individuals. We are, in our essence, beyond the things we create to divide us, religions, countries, beliefs, etc. The good we can create, and I believe humanity has begun down this path, when we think with our hearts and know we are all one. This is fundamental and foundational for transformation on our planet to occur.
Dignity: Public assessments about people's moral, financial, and social integrity - whole and complete - and value - importance, utility, and worth - to their communities. It is worth noting, Dr. Flores' definition of integrity. Integrity, not a moral issue, but rather whole and complete. When your words and actions are in alignment, this is integrity. Dignity is the "marriage" of integrity and value. Value is defined not by you but by your community or the marketplace. Your community or the marketplace determines the value of your goods and services by how much importance, worth, and help they provide.
Situation: The array of unique sets of threats we need to avoid, obligations we need to fulfill, and opportunities we need to exploit in order to fulfill our intentions. Dr. Flores' one sentence on situation could be a chapter in a book! Living in our world today, threats are many and changing. But when you create yourself via your inspiration and fulfill your calling, your purpose, this automatically negates many threats. Obligations change with life. Raising children is a different obligation than planning for a secure retirement. Obligations would also include your profession, trustworthiness, value, authority, leadership, and dignity. Also, the human concern of education, as technology is advancing so fast, continual learning is a must to survive, let alone thrive. Opportunities to exploit is being always open to see, seek, and exploit opportunities in life when they present themselves. And know struggles and breakdowns always come with lessons and opportunities in them.
Thirteen human concerns. Again, the importance of each one varies, not only individually, but changes frequently for each one of us as life shows up. What was a major concern today, you take care of it, fulfill it, and it no longer is a primary concern for you tomorrow.
But in the end, after reflecting on these 13 human concerns, I leave you with a question: of the 13 human concerns, which one do you care about the most? Now tap into your inspiration to fulfill that concern. You wouldn't care unless you had the capacity to fulfill your concern.