« March 2009 |
| May 2009 »
April 2009 Archives
Disoriented? In a fog? Feeling lost? Inclined to freeze and do nothing?
You may be suffering from an oppressive new pathology among chiropractors whose primary symptom includes a yearning for their (insert year here) practice from the past. They want to return to the good old days. Who knew that having your claims cut by only 30% would trigger such nostalgia?
In response, some chiropractors adopt a strategy that includes stopping. Waiting. Looking. Sizing up the situation. The thinking goes like this: If I postpone my decisions, keep my head down and a wetted finger up, I’ll avoid making a mistake. I understand this MO because for years I was the poster child for this style of decision making. (The solution? Make the best decision possible and then do everything within your power to make it the right decision.)
What these chiropractors fail to realize is that waiting and watching is a decision. And these days, an especially unhelpful-reactive-victim decision. If you find yourself in this unhappy place, look ahead, rather than over your shoulder.
Continue reading "Getting Your Old Practice Back" »
Nobody gets away with anything. Ever.
We live in a universe of dependable laws that operate under the immutable force of cause and effect. Thinking we can cheat or exploit a weakness or steal when no one is looking, is much like thinking that our garbage actually disappears when the garbage collector comes each week. It doesn’t. It’s simply moved to a new location.
Do you divert massive amounts of energy to cover up, hide or suppress who you really are?
Compartmentalizing our lives, showing up one way when we think no one is watching, and another when we might get caught or found out, is a surefire way to sabotage success.
Come clean. You’re not fooling anyone. Frankly, you’re not that good of an actor. Once you give yourself permission to show up authentically, flaws and all, you grant patients the same freedom. Then true healing can occur. For them and you.
From time to time, I encounter chiropractors who fear for the future of the profession of chiropractic. Ironically, these are often those who do not actually “profess” chiropractic.
If your notion of chiropractic is limited to joint mobilization, improved biomechanical function, spinal alignment or the treatment of localized neck pain and back pain, you have every reason to fear that massage therapists, physical therapists or even newly enlightened osteopaths will usurp your small vision of chiropractic.
The profession of chiropractic is not entitled to exist. It has a right to exist; even the privilege to exist, but no guarantee to exist. In fact, as a profession it won’t exist if fewer and fewer chiropractors profess and deliver the principles of chiropractic.
Continue reading "The Profession of Chiropractic" »
As you attract your tribe of those who resonate with your vision of health, you're expected to show up as a leader. Careful! Leadership isn't about imposing your point of view or expecting patients to toe the line. That's management.
Leadership is about reminding patients of a vision that they cannot see. It's about suggesting possibilities for a better future and creating hope. Leadership is about reassuring others that tomorrow will be better than today.
Help patients see the future and dream bigger dreams. Their lack of physical health is often a sign that some other aspect of their life needs healing. A job they hate. A marriage that needs renewed intimacy. A future that lacks opportunity.
Weave the dream and remind them of the real purpose of better health--to be more fully alive. As you do, your influence assumes proportions far greater than that of a manager.
On Monday, it will have been exactly 10 years since I conveyed my half interest in the old company to my business partner to begin anew with Patient Media. Wow. Time flies.
The Small Business Administration reports that over 50% of small businesses fail in the first five years. I understand. I learned some of the most important lessons of my life during those difficult first five years as we struggled to find our voice, establish our tribe and face the cash flow issues that all new businesses struggle with. On several occasions I remember thinking that if I had known that it was going to be this difficult, I might not have sold a sure thing to start over on my own.
Of course, nothing is a sure thing. Especially these days.
We got a lot of help. A couple of critical speaking gigs exposed Patient Media to a group of new customers at a pivotal moment. A printer who came through at a particularly difficult time. And Bob Ashida, a graphics genius. Plus, an incredible support team that has included Leslyn, Sam, Mike, Maggie, Kim and Melissa. Not to mention our incredible distributors around the world, our affiliation with the Chiropractic Leadership Alliance and our chiropractors, Dr. Bill Henrie and Dr. Lou Jenik.
Thanks for being part of our 10 years of learning, loving and serving. We appreciate you more than you will ever, ever know. It’s an honor to serve beside you and we look forward to the next 10 years with even greater anticipation. After all, we’re just getting started!
Thank you. I mean it. Thank you!
Motivation is much like medicine. It's an outside in process and it suggests that the subject is lacking something.
Like a drug, attempting to motivate someone else, whether a pet, a teenager, an employee or a patient, requires that you overpower their current state. Worse, if you're able to move them to action, your efforts rarely last and you have to "motivate" them again. Attempting to motivate others is exhausting.
Instead, you and they would be better served by attempting to inspire them.
Inspiring patients is like chiropractic. It recognizes that what they need, they already have. But something is in the way. Uncover the interference (subluxation) and reduce it.
This requires sufficient curiosity to uncover that wee little "pilot light" of a dream, which when properly fueled and encouraged, can explode into a passionate fire. Do that each day and your practice will have no other choice but to grow.
As I hear from chiropractors whom I have considered excellent examples of the profession, privately confess that their new patient numbers are down, I’ve become interested in the new patient aspect of practice. Frankly, I’ve avoided this. I’ve generally viewed new patient acquisition, beyond the internal referral process, as the seedy part of practice. The “tenderloin” of the profession. Traditionally, this has included everything from bent pens and free spinal exams to lightning-bolt adorned yellow page ads and heavy-handed recall scripting.
I’m assuming that subluxations have little regard for the stock market or the economy. Thus, if chiropractic is suddenly less attractive these days, my guess is that many chiropractors have depended too heavily on the new patient lubrication afforded patients with generous insurance policies. And while coverage hasn’t dwindled precisely in tandem with the economy, apparently a patient’s willingness to pony up the co-pay has.
If your new patient numbers are down, it’s likely that you’re not very familiar to prospective new patients in your community.
Continue reading "Are You Familiar?" »
Do you address the subluxation, or the person with the subluxation?
The mechanistic, allopathic approach is to largely ignore the person or circumstances that created the "it" in favor of addressing the "it." But most "its," whether subluxations, tumors, infections or indigestion are merely symptoms of something else. If DC is to stand for Doctor of Cause, you'll want to lose your infatuation with the spine and expand your attention to the overall person.
Messy business, this commitment to cause.
Don't be misled into thinking you have to fix the cause. It's likely that you'll be unable to fix most causes. Are you okay with that?
Instead, have the courage to ask questions (and listen to their answers!) in such a way as to help patients connect the dots between their life and their health. It could be a significantly more powerful adjustment than anything you do to their spine.
Many chiropractors seem to go beige when they consider the prospect of who they must be to attract new patients. Apparently, the thinking goes something like this: “If I can knock off my rough spots and remove any traits that might be remotely off-putting to others, I’ll be more attractive.”
At first glance, this chameleon-like strategy makes sense. However, it is a recipe for mediocrity and an exhausting walking-on-eggshells existence that not only makes you less attractive, it eventually leads to resentment.
Turns out, you must repel others if you ever hope to attract new patients into your life.
Continue reading "Are You Repulsive?" »
This page contains all entries posted to Chiropractic Practice Blog in April 2009. They are listed from oldest to newest.
March 2009 is the previous archive.
May 2009 is the next archive.
Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.