Who meets whose needs?

 Group members are responsible for meeting their own needs, within a culture that is grown with that in mind. 

Leaders are not responsible for meeting the needs of others. Leaders may facilitate others and encourage them to meet their needs; a leader may serve as an example of self-responsibility and serve as a resource and a guide. Leaders may encourage and support others but when they strive to directly meet the needs of others the leaders burn out like a star falling. Leaders and group members can build a culture that encourages everyone to meet their own needs in a healthy way. This is part of building a culture together. 

How do you treat your employees?

There is a story, told and retold in the east, about the master of a monastery who was having trouble with his “organization” — the monks who came to live and study there. He noticed that morale was low and the young monks were treating each other poorly. Attendance by visitors was dropping and the number of young people who wanted to study there was on the decline.
The master went to see the wisest man he knew and presented his case. “What shall I do?” he asked. “It seems as if we are all ill.”
After listening in silence for some time, the sage had a surprising response. “I know for a fact that Buddha himself is in your monastery, living there everyday. He will not reveal himself, but he is among you. You do not recognize him and this is the cause of your anguish.”
The master returned to his monastery shaking his head and when he returned he shared the whole story with all the monks together. They looked around the room at each group member, studying each other carefully, looking for some sign. They found none. Still, somewhere in their deepest knowledge, they believed the sage.
They decided to take no chances. Since the Buddha would not reveal himself, one by one they chose to treat each person within the walls as Buddha himself.
From that day forward, the monastery flourished.

Ego and leaders

 Leading from the false, projected, public self compared to leading from the authentic, natural, fearless self… The first self is invested in protection and preservation of image. The second is invested in faith in each individual, trust in the process and continually developing synergy.

Becoming a leader with a smaller ego means:

  • Giving up the need to know the answers.
  • Giving up an attachment to the outcome.
  • Giving up the need to be superior or smarter.
  • Being able to be wrong.
  • Letting go of control.
  • Listening instead of talking.
  • Honoring each point of view. 


Books By John Thomas Wood

Keeping Seattle Up – Rex Cohm is a single parent, a psychotherapist and a man who has lost two important women in his life. Nearing mid-life he is offered, almost by accident, a radio talk show on sex. We follow Rex through his losses, his relationship with his precocious teen daughter and his dialogues with his listeners. Readers will be touched by his struggles, his small victories, the journey he takes with his child and the life lessons he has learned. Available now at Booktrope, Amazon and B&N, as an e book or in print.

Be Strong, Be Smart – a father talks with his daughter about sex –This is a small powerful book written by a father to his 14-year-old daughter about her future sexual life. He talks about attitude, gender, fear, respect, anatomy, desire, orgasm, masturbation and, yes, love.  This eye-opening read will appeal to mothers and fathers, sons and daughters everywhere; a great opportunity to read and begin a dialogue in a family.

BSBS is getting some great reviews, like this one:  “I couldn’t put it down until I had read the entire book. It is fantastic, extraordinary and absolutely wonderful.  Because you made it personal it felt so real and like a loving father sharing with his daughter rather than a distant or preachy book. Putting in the daughter’s response chapter was such a fine idea.   I could really relate to much of what you shared — as a single mom with 3 daughters.”

Be Strong Be Smart is available now through Booktrope publishing  Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

The next five books listed, The “Heart of Life” series, are available from Booktrope publishing and on Amazon and B&N, as an e-book or in print.

The Heart of Power will forever change the way you look at power, relationships and organizations. A collection of 100 aphorisms on personal power and leadership, this little book explores how power is defined and valued, how our attitudes about power shape our lives, power in intimate relationships, how we deny our power and what power means to leaders. The Heart of Power has the potential to change your life by changing your mind and feelings about power. You will discover the basis for your power, the form it takes and the results of power, both in yourself and those around you.

The Heart of Leadership – East Meets West Leading the 21st Century Organization –This is a book for present or emerging leaders in any kind of organization. It holds traditional ideas about leadership up and examines them through the lens of Eastern philosophy. The Heart of Leadership is, at the same time, supportive and challenging. Based in the belief that human beings are inherently well meaning, it is a compassionate look at leadership aimed at empowerment, collaboration and consensus building. Power, authority, management and group dynamics are explored in innovative ways; a great gift for leaders at any level.

The Heart of Relationships — 105 truths on the path to intimacy, is refreshing and provocative in its approach, tone and content. It is a collection of 105 aphorisms on love, marriage and intimacy, where these three meet and where they don’t. The book brings to the surface intriguing ideas about the way human beings search for love; find it and how we treat it when we have it. In language that is familiar and straightforward, The Heart of Relationships takes the reader on a tour of the paths to intimacy, rocky and winding as it often is.  This is a marvelous read for those about to get married, a useful tool for couples in crisis, a great relationship builder for couples who want to enrich their partnership and a valuable tool for those who counsel others.

The Heart of Feeling –This is a unique book that will open the reader to a greater depth on feeling and a greater understanding of where feelings come from, how they affect us and how we can learn to manage them. Forty-three individuals comment on thirty-one feeling states, opening up in a personal way about what they have learned about joy, suspicion, anger, sadness and many other emotions. It is both a personal book that will help the reader become more aware of feelings, more accepting and more expressive. It will encourage you, as Carl Rogers said about the book, “to become more fully a person.”

The Heart of Fear – All of us are afraid at some time or another and fear is an emotion that we should not deny. On the other hand, fear should not run our lives. The Heart of Fear explores the role fear plays, how we learn to be afraid, the things we’re typical afraid of and how to manage our fear. It is an encouraging, uplifting book that sheds light on the feeling we most need to understand.  Any parent, leader, teacher or counselor will benefit from this book.

Citizen and Conversations with Dog are available through the author.

Citizen  is a rich, compelling novel that interweaves the lives of individuals with the major global conflict of the 20th century.   The book tells the stories of three families that struggle through the captivity and inherent racism in the internment of 120,000 Japanese Americans during World War II. The novel focuses on Will and Molly Whitman – based on the real life publishers Walt and Milly Woodward—a young couple who are new to publishing. They have recently purchased The Bainbridge Review, a weekly that serves the small island of Bainbridge Island, Washington. Shortly after they buy the newspaper the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor. Before three months pass, nearly 300 of their neighbors are rounded up and taken away to internment camps throughout the west. This is a human story of fear, courage and love.  Set in a charming Northwest community and in the desert northeast of Los Angeles, the characters in Citizen live through issues that remain in today’s headlines.

Conversations with Dog —“Conversations” ranges from tongue-in-cheek to the sublime. A running dialogue between a seven-year-old border collie and the author, the book explores life, love, religion, fear, power, death and those chewy rawhide things. A book that is at the same time funny and deep, it’s a great read for lovers of dogs and life. Using her master as a foil, “Moonshine” will lead you on a romp through a field you won’t soon forget. As Spot says in his review: “It’s definitely a best smeller.”




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About John Wood

John Thomas Wood

This website is dedicated to the energy and the experiences that make us human. You will find here explorations of love, fear, emotion, leadership and relationships. You will see opportunities to enhance your spiritual and personal potential. My single aim is to help you discover and live to the fullest your true nature.

John Thomas Wood, PhD, has been in the field of personal development, spiritual discovery and organizational consulting for forty years. The author of nine books, he grew up professionally at Center for Studies of the Person in La Jolla, California, working with Carl Rogers and many others developing client-centered therapy applications to other fields of endeavor. He has worked in most major cities in this country, in Mexico and in seven European countries leading workshops and consulting.  Dr. Wood has a special interest in the philosophy and use of power and how power is used in personal relationships and organizations. His writing is clear and straightforward and his basic intention is growing individuals and organizations to their fullest and best potential. He devotes his time to writing and creating fine art prints. His prize-winning work, called by one gallery owner “painting with a camera” has been displayed in many Northwest galleries and hangs in homes in Spokane, Seattle, Bainbridge Island, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Portland, Richmond, New York, and Germany.