Approaches and Influences

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Approaches I've developed

Holistic Decision Making

Holistic Decision Making (HDM) is a whole-oriented approach to clarifying and then reliably actualising what is supremely important to you, especially when life gets complex and difficult. For now you can learn more about Holistic Decision Making at its own website: Out of everything I’ve done it is probably the most used by the most people (with the possible exception of Permablitz).

Living Design Process

Living Design Process is a practical design process philosophy. It can be used to guide the design, development and retrofit of anything – at any scale and at any stage of prior development. It has its own website: and I am also currently writing a book about it.

Approaches that have inspired me


Permaculture is a design system for sustainable living and land use. It was originated by David Holmgren and Bill Mollison. Read a brief into to permaculture here, see the wikipedia entry here, see David Holmgren introducing it here, and I mentioned Making Permaculture Stronger too.

Living Process

You can read a bit about Christopher Alexander’s Living Process approach here and here.

Living Systems Thinking

I am learning Living Systems thinking or what is also called Regenerative Development from Carol SanfordJoel Glanzberg, and Bill Reed. The links on their names go to fantastic interviews I’ve done with them all, and you can find more at, and

Possibility Management

Possibility Management is a set of maps, tool and processes for coming more fully alive and exploding your previous definitions of what is possible. It is a profound, powerful, and intensely non-boring lifelong practice. I have interviewed its founder Clinton Callahan here and here.


Robert’s site is here.

Holistic Management

I interviewed Holistic Management founder Allan Savory here. The Savory Institute is here, Holistic Management International is here. I have been lucky enough to learn directly not only from Allan but from Brian Wehlburg, a gifted HM educator.

Other Significant Influences and Kindred Spirits

Mike ODonnell

Mike is my older brother. He swims into deep, primordial places, and he makes me cry with what he shares when he returns. And I’m not the only one. Hear his voice here.

The Field-Process Model and Cocreation Foundation

My friend and collegue Jasch Rohr wrote this amazing article with his partner Sonja Hörster. For one article it has had a huge influence on my approach. I interviewed Jascha about it here.

Charles Eisenstein

How can I not mention Charles when he says things like “The reason for life is life. The reason for life is to make more life. The reason for life is to bring more life into all that is, to make the universe more and more and more alive, that live is unfolding into greater and greater livingness. The point is to be part of the increasing livingness of life” (in his online course Metaphysics and Mystery). Check him out here. His book The More Beautiful World Your Heart Knows is Possible is a beautiful read also.

Henri Bortoft

Henri’s book The Wholeness of Nature was a game-changer for me.