Bowen F. White, M.D. combines the talents and expertise of a physician, speaker, consultant, and author. He travels the world conducting seminars, consulting and speaking to public and private organizations.
In 1983, Dr. White founded the Department of Preventive & Stress Medicine for Baptist Medical Center in Kansas City, Missouri and the Department of Wellness and Health Promotion before leaving to pursue a private practice and a career as a consultant and speaker. He has given hundreds of keynote addresses and some highlights of his consulting experience include a six-month team building project at NCAA headquarters, three years as corporate medical consultant to the Hazelden Foundation, multiple presentations for Medtronic, Inc. (including their Medtronic Leader program), has been the graduation speaker for MFS leadership training programs, multiple presentations for the Institute for Management Studies, lectured to graduate students at Stanford University on play, design thinking and innovation and worked with the Kansas City Royals on performance enhancement.
As an organizational physician he is interested in the “people piece” of the workplace puzzle: Creating Healthy Work Environments, Team Building, Leadership, Performance Enhancement, Stress, Managing Change, Sales, Ethics, and Communications. His programs emphasize the need for individuals to take responsibility for their own health and well being as he helps organizations create suspiciously healthy workplaces.
Dr. White’s training programs, seminars, keynote speeches, management retreats, executive mentoring and spouse programs have had an immediate, practical application for such organizations as: Pennsylvania Conference of State Trial Judges, Hallmark Cards, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, DuPont, 3M, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, AVEDA, Association of American Medical Colleges, New York Life Insurance, Duke University Medical Center, Federal Reserve Bank, Beth Israel Hospital, Mercury Marine, Inc., the Foreign Service Institute, MFS, Ameriprise Financial and the Georgetown University Law Faculty.
His message is international. In addition to presentations throughout the US, he has presented at conferences in Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Germany, Austria, India, Ireland, Scotland, Spain, Panama and Israel. He has spoken to educators, managers and the aviation industry in the UK (London, Manchester, Edinburgh), and to staff members stationed at the U.S. Embassy in Budapest, Hungary.
The International Management Center in Budapest asked Dr. White to share his expertise with managers studying their emerging market economy. He has also discussed aspects of executive training and quality programs with industrial managers in Osaka, Japan.
In addition to appearing on the front page of the Wall St. Journal and on national television programs such as CBS This Morning, Desmond Morris’ The Human Animal and the PBS series The Promise of Play, Dr. White is often interviewed by radio, television, newspaper and magazine journalists. Most recently he was interviewed at his home by CNN on the topic of play and relationships which aired October 2017. He has eight years of experience as a weekly TV health commentator for Kansas City’s CBS-TV affiliate and also had a three-year stint writing a weekly newspaper column, entitled “Patient Potential,” for the Kansas City Business Journal.
Dr. White is married with four daughters. He contributes his time to The Gesundheit! Institute and is a founding board member for the National Institute for Play. He is the author of two books: Why Normal Isn’t Healthy and with John MacDougal, A Clinician’s Guide to Spirituality. In addition he created two audio tape series: The Cry of the Heart and Dr. White’s Complete Stress Management Kit.
Why Normal Isn’t Healthy
Background, growing up here’s what we learned:
- There’s only one way of doing things, that’s the right way. (stress others when they do it wrong)
- The secret of success is hard work. (fun is something that happens after work & balance can be an issue)
- If you care about doing a good job you should be hard on yourself. (stress yourself)
How did we learn the “right way” to do things? Trial and error. We did it wrong, did it wrong, did it wrong and finally did it right!!
And when we did it wrong we were told we were bad and should be ashamed of ourselves. So we all got more specific negative feedback than positive feedback on the road to learning how to do things well/right. Also warmth was withheld until performance criteria were met. “Your father and I are very proud to see you’ve finally learned how to do that the right way!”
Getting more specific negative feedback than specific positive feedback learning the right way to do things means that we all got our feelings of inadequacy reinforced in the process. And those feelings never go away. Why? The voice of the parent becomes the inner voice of the child. So when we grow up and make a mistake we don’t need anyone else to reinforce our feelings of inadequacy. We do it to ourselves! The result is that we all have a secret. That part of us that has those feelings of inadequacy is called the scared one; scared guy, scared gal inside who never goes away. However, it is a secret we all share yet don’t talk about.
The irony is that having those feelings of inadequacy doesn’t mean we’re inadequate. In fact it’s a great driver of ambition to show the world our worth by doing things really well. Better yet, perfectly. That way no one will know our secret! That’s the plus side if you will of the scared one.
The down side is that how we operate in relationships is a function of how we learned to feel about ourselves. It’s not a function of how well we do anything! So we can be really good at doing something and not be very good at coaching someone to learn how to do what we already know. “What’s the matter with you? How many times do we have to go through this? What’s your problem? !”
Just as people can learn how to do some process improvement in the plant, they can also learn some process improvement in their relationships, both at work and at home. Why bother? Because everything gets done through relationships….including how to be a “Front Runner.”
That brings us to outcomes.
Participants will see:
- How to have a healthier relationship with themselves instead of being their own worst enemies.
- How to have healthier relationships with others without those folks changing.
- How to get better at what they do because we can all get better and help others do the same.
- How can we have more fun getting better.