Patient Media

« My Two New Friends | Main | Monday Morning Motivation »

Drugs, Pills and Medicine

pills.jpgAstute marketers know that what a new product or service is named can have a profound effect on sales. It wasn’t “The Promise to America,” it was “The Contract With America.” It’s not called death insurance, but life insurance. Who would disagree with an estate tax? That’s why opponents call it the death tax. Instead of “unwanted” effects, they’re called “side” effects, as if they were a bonus or something.

The importance of naming especially struck me this morning when I sat down to eat breakfast and was asked if I wanted my “pills” brought over to the table. I had forgotten my fish oil, acidophilious capsule and five Standard Process Catalyn supplements on the counter.

Pills. Hmmm. I hadn’t thought of them as pills.

And we don’t call the box above the bathroom sink a “drug cabinet” but that’s largely what it is. Medicine cabinet sounds, well, softer. In the same way “pills” sounds better than “drugs.”

We don’t have a lot of things to name in chiropractic. But those that we do are especially significant. Two that come to mind are adjustment and manipulation. Plus, I suppose, patient and practice member. I’ve explored these pairs before.

“What’s the big deal, Bill? They’re just words.”

Precisely. And words have meanings. They stand for ideas. They reflect how precisely you see the world. They provide evidence as to how consciously you’re living your life. They equip you to make distinctions. (This is different from that.) Sloppy language is a sign of sloppy thinking. And sloppy thinking is the cause behind a sloppy life—and a sloppy practice. Become more rigorous in your use of language and you’ll discover that your reality profoundly changes.

Comments (2)

Rick Hasemeier:

Words are so insightful to grasp what the real question or concern that the person in front of you is asking. The words that you speak throughout a persons care creates the size of health outcomes that you are working on.

I learned to say on my Standard Process supplements to call it concentrated whole food. I have experienced people calling it pills or even medication.

Your words and your clients, can be so insightful for revealing internal conflict or incongruence.

Tony Russo:

And I'm just starting to read the book you recommended, "Words That Work." Couldn't agree with you more. How something is worded means everything, where it could make or break a practice. And it is a true reflection of one's attitude towards their practice. Half-butted words, half-butted attitude.
So what do you think we should call the adjustment, as I hate the words "manipulation" or "massage". And what's your recommendation for "patient" or "practice member"? How do I refer to my staff? "Staff, worker, girl"?
I just thought of's "correction to the spine/nervous system, associate and intern assistant.

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)

From January 27, 2008 9:52 AM

This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on January 27, 2008 9:52 AM.

The previous post in this blog was My Two New Friends.

The next post in this blog is Monday Morning Motivation.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.