In an article that appeared in Mental Health, Religion & Culture, "How does one become spiritual? The Spiritual Modeling Inventory of Life Environments (SMILE)," Oman, Thorensen, Park, Shaver, Hood and Plante (2009) remind us of a very important fact:
Throughout history, religious traditions have emphasized the importance of keeping good company and attending to the example of good or holy persons, arguing that people tend to become more like those with whom they associate. The power of example is also recognized and documented in modern scientific psychology, in which Bandura's Social Cognitive Theory (SCT; Bandura, 1986) offers perhaps the most fully developed account of social learning.

According to Social Cognitive Theory, social learning processes are influenced both by environmental factors, such as the availability of suitable behavioral models, and by intra-individual factors, such as motivation and self-efficacy perceptions (Bandura, 1986). Interpersonal factors, such as the nature, closeness, and psychic "investment" in one's personal relationship with a model, may also affect social leaning processes (Lent & Lopez, 2002; Smith & Denton, 2005, p.243).
  • My "ultimate concern" is to enrich and serve the lives of others by "addressing their need for growth and meaning," to be "genuine," and to become a person of good counsel and example to youth regardless of the setting. Moreover, I aspire to make a real contribution to society by becoming expert in creating a "sociocultural community" or "compassionate community of practice and spiritual modeling" that is "rooted in deeper and more spiritual connections" where "authentic leadership development" (ALD) is enlivened and guided by a solid ethical core (1) the moral character of its founder, (2) the ethical values embedded in its director's vision, articulation, and program, and (3) the integrity of the processes of ethical choice and action that its affiliated researchers, clinicians, clergy, and laypersons engage in and collectively pursue to establish a positive climate that brings out the best personal qualities in people - acceptance, charity, commitment, compassion, confidence, goodwill, good works, gratitude, harmony, honesty, hope, humility, love, openness, optimism, reason, the sharing of authority, interests, power, norms, spirituality, and an understanding of differences and universal brotherhood. 
  • My "primary purpose" is to use "moral imagination","a capacity for productive activity" and "referral pathways" to ensure that youth who are at risk are fully supported; for example, with services such as counseling, health, employment and education (Stacey 2004).
  • My "direct actions" are those of a "servant leader" (Greenleaf,1977) and one of "a true practitioner ...someone who has discovered that it is possible to be at ease in the world for no reason, if only for a few moments at a time, and that such ease is synonymous with transcending the apparent boundaries of the self" (Harris,2014). 

Upon asking myself, what one thing would I do to make a difference if I knew that I could not fail, foremost is to do my very best to "lead out of my heart" or "way of being" or a sense of "shared competence" and "setting aside self-interest" (Freeman,2011) to work diligently at developing great skill in 1) guiding teenagers towards accepting themselves, 2) instructing them on how to identify when a threat is detected, 3) introducing them to helpful thinking styles, 4) providing training that improves attention, self-report assessment and self-regulation, 5) increasing distress tolerance and competency in confronting and confidently coping with subject matters like alcohol and drug use and abuse, gambling and computer gaming, depression and anxiety, anger and violence, bullying and gangs, fear of becoming overwhelmed or abandoned, self-harm and suicidal thoughts, and smoking and avoiding the personal risks that are commonly associated with unsafe sexual behavior.
Therefore, the primary goal for 'The Integrated Person' blog is to give "breath" and "hope" to today's youth by offering them a positive strength-based platform characterized by a commitment to ethical conduct and a combination of basic life skills, cultural, developmental, and spiritual practices and knowledge all of which is intended to provide a central means for coping with difficulties and set them on a healthier life pathway and spiritual journey. One that is characterized by high self-esteem, a strong sense of autonomy, and subjective well-being (Colquhoun & Dochery 2012; Tomyn et al. 2013). This includes;
  1. Providing an online "storage space for ideas" on integrated living;
  2. Facilitating youth and parent access to information and services that address "what is most important/consequential";
  3. Reducing the risk of youth between the ages of 17 and 21 disengaging from home, school, employment and community;
  4. Protecting youth against exposure to abusive settings, antisocial behavior, dislocation from family, high rates of violence, a lack of basic skills as young adults, substance abuse, a strong peer culture of negative behaviors, negative family situations, neglect or psychological distress, poor health outcomes, homelessness or becoming prone to risky behaviors and frequent contact with the juvenile justice system; and lastly
  5. Creating structured activities that take place within the online community that prevent boredom and lead to increased dialogue about consciousness, love, compassion, inclusive communities, identifying purpose in life and increase wisdom, while also fostering close connection with others, harmony, moderation and responsible lifestyles through an appropriate use of "Social Media" and "Blogger" in particular.

The achievement of goal-oriented, positive, and purposeful outcomes has been proven to result from giving very focused and regular attention to creating an environment that includes a good number of the following key factors:
  1. Orienting one's life toward being;
  2. Authentic presence;
  3. Movement;
  4. Self-involvement;
  5. Social support (individual & group);
  6. Mindfulness-based stress reduction;
  7. Art-artistic expression;
  8. Journal keeping;
  9. Play-laughter-gaiety;
  10. Breathing exercises;
  11. Active listening;
  12. Personal coaching;
  13. Applied techniques for overriding a stress reactive imagination; and
  14. Tools that increase positive affect, disidentifying, reperceiving through relaxation-imagery-visualization skills, heart awareness, spontaneity, learning for interpersonal effectiveness, music, nature-light-sound, self-regulation and distress tolerance.

Essentially, this is intended to be an ongoing project aimed at developing a mindset among youth for service, activism, inquiry, and "the integration of humanization" based upon an evolving exposure to material on the subjects of art, architecture, classic literature, culture, dance, ecology, economics, education, film, history, music, nature, poetry, politics, philosophy, psychology, religion and spirituality, and writing.

This is the very work that I now feel most deeply called to do in collaboration with others around the world.

Many blessings to all.

Jon Dunnemann, Founder and Director
'N Good Company, An emerging spiritual enterprise
22 Winding River Court
Lakewood, NJ 08701
Email: theintegratedperson@gmail.com

"A Compassion Industry Leader."