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Interpersonal Skills 101: Enhancing the Value of Our Patient Interactions
Recently, I read an interesting article in our local newspaper titled "The Value of Human Interaction." The article presented comments from a senior editor for Fortune magazine who discussed "Civility in the Business World."
Will You Be an Amplifer or a Mute?
These times are changing, and changing quickly. There have been many challenges to this profession throughout the past few years. The challenge is to talk, then talk and talk some more about this medicine.
An Excerpt from TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics
This excerpt is reprinted with permission from Jamie Wu. TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics was released in 2014 by People's Medical Publishing House.
Atypical Femoral Fractures and Bisphosphonate Use: What to Watch For
Bisphosphonates (BP) are popular drugs, with more than 8 billion in sales in 2008; however, profits have declined as patents began expiring. Nonetheless, BP remain the most commonly prescribed drugs for patients at risk of osteoporotic fractures, with several million prescriptions written every year.
Impacting Chiropractic's Future With Technology
When it comes to electronic health records (EHR), Robert Moberg and Dr. Steven Kraus are two of the leading industry experts on the topic.
There Really is No Room for Sexism
Recently, Matteo* (a transgender male) approached me during a break in an advanced shiatsu class in Berlin where he was one of two men in a group of 20 women. "Pamela. Don't forget to remind the translator to include male endings."
Expanding Access, Branch by Branch
The big news coming from Capitol Hill isn't merely the recent introduction of a pair of bills designed to expand chiropractic services in the Veterans Affairs and military health care systems; after all, similar legislation has made its way through Congress before, never reaching the Oval Office for presidential signature.
The Dietary Supplement Research Dilemma
I do not care what the truth is, one way or another; I just want to know it. And when it comes to dietary supplements, the truth can be hard to find for a number of reasons.
Primary Spine Care: Addressing Concerns & Criticisms
The Dec. 1, 2013 issue of Dynamic Chiropractic included an article describing the implementation of a training program for primary spine practitioners (PSP) within a metropolitan region and supported by a large BC/BS plan.
Converting More Patients to Your Practice
In 2013 and 2014, the theme was "the money is in the list." This meant that if you had a big email list, you were really making some "cha-ching." Unfortunately, having thousands of emails doesn't equate to thousands of dollars in profit.
Help Update the LBP Practice Guideline
The Council on Chiropractic Guidelines and Practice Parameters has announced the release of an updated Clinical Practice Guideline for Chiropractic Management of Low Back Pain for stakeholder review and comment.
Avoid Random Treatment of Trigger Points (Part 2)
We must acknowledge that the fascia, which surrounds literally everything in our bodies, including every muscle fiber, is more than just a covering.
The Need for a New Medical Model: A Challenge for Biopsychosocial and Ecopsychologica Medicine
Chinese medicine speaks of alignment between humans, heaven and earth. It is a complex view with a focus upon relationship. These are comprehensive ideas with no specific terms in contemporary medical practice.
B Vitamins Improve Memory, Prevent Brain Atrophy
The 2010 OPTIMA study showed that the accelerated rate of brain atrophy in elderly with mild cognitive impairment could be slowed via supplementation with homocysteine-lowering B vitamins, which included folic acid, vitamin B12 and vitamin B6.
A Reality Check – and a Chance to Educate
Imagine working in the public relations department of nutrition retailer General Nutrition Corporation (GNC) and reading the The New York Times announce...
TCM Congress in Rothenburg is Largest in Western World
In the medieval town of Rothenburg, deep set within the Bavarian countryside in Southern Germany, the TCM Kongress Rothenburg each year draws around 1.200 participants from more than 40 different countries to attend the biggest TCM conference in the Western world.
The Way We Are Designed: A Conversation with Gil Hedley, PhD
I was first introduced to the work of Gil Hedley by Tom DiFerdinando. He gifted me Gil's DVD series.
Treating Beyond Pain
More often than not, when a patient presents to the office, it is for a pain complaint. Headache, neck pain, low back pain, sciatica, carpal tunnel... The pain is often the focus of the patient's mindset, and they don't often have any thought of what comes after the pain.
A Well-Kept Secret: 5 Element Acupuncture, Part II
Supervising acupuncture interns at a TCM college, it has always struck me how funny it is to hear the clinic manager tell the patients that the Five Element clinic specializes in treating emotions, as if patients with physical pain have no emotions!
Synergy Doesn't Happen in Silos: Acupuncture in Hospitals and Other Healthcare Settings
As acupuncture and traditional East Asian medicine continue to intersect and integrate with biomedical approaches, the conversation about integration expands and becomes richer.
Recreational Cannabis Use and TCM
Many people are drawn to cannabis for its effects physically, mentally and emotionally. Medically, cannabis has some legitimate uses, however the scope of this article is limited to the recreational use of cannabis.
Low Back Pain: Posture and Movement Analysis
When performing static and dynamic movement analysis of the lumbopelvic hip area, begin with standing visual posture analysis of the pelvis, and then perform lumbar range of motion and assess what you might see during normal versus abnormal lumbar flexion motion.
November, 2002, Vol. 02, Issue 11
The 10th Element: Time, Space and Rhythms
By Robin Zill, LMT
The 10 Elements of the Spa Experience are designed to teach the consumer and professional about the integrated nature of the spa experience. This is the 11th article in a 12-part series and focuses on the 10th of the 10 elements: Time, Space and Rhythms.To view a graphic representation of the 10 elements, click here.
There is a unique time to sleep, eat, wake and rejoice for each of us. The 10th element weaves together three elusive concepts: time, space and rhythms. It is defined as the perception of space and time and its relationship to natural cycles and rhythms. The study of the wholeness of the human experience within the context of our environment, and our relationship to space and time, is not a new one. Ancient cultures and great religions have studied the patterns of wo(man)kind for thousands of years. The circular aspect of time has survived through the Aruyvedic teachings, the Chinese Five-Element theory, and the Native American MedicineWheel. All of these circles convey a sense of seasonality, ofrhythm as people move through the brief time they have here on earth. They also emphasize the importance of the environment, the space in which that individual resides. The 10th element represents our effort to capture this dynamic and relate it to the spa experience.
This element makes up the circumference of the 10 Element Circle. I like to think of it as a vessel that holds all of the elements together, giving form to our discussion. The relationship between time, space and rhythms highlights the dynamic interplay between the physical life and the spiritual life; the visible and the invisible. Time and space are "invisible" and relative, yet how we think about them reflects the elusive, existential quality of who we are. It is crucially linked with the fifth element, Integration, located in the center of the circle. A greater understanding of time, space and rhythms helps us integrate the elements of the spa experience. Essentially, the 10th element is about transcendence of self.
Before we leap to how this element has practical applications for our industry, it is helpful to approach it philosophically. Frijtof Capra is one of America's most innovative thinkers; his work as a philosopher, scientist and author has inspired my vision for the spa journey over many years. Since the Tenth Element interacts with all of the other elements, it is the container that gives structure to the spa experience. Capra's description of a living system directly relates to this concept of time, space and rhythms. A living system, he says, has three characteristics:
Capra goes on to say:
Although this element may seem abstract, the 10th element is woven into almost every aspect of the spa experience. It affects how the client perceives space, how much time the client gives to the experience, and the rhythm and flow of the treatment sequence. This intangible "flow" often affects the client's perceived value of the spa experience. It also is a critical factor in determining the quality of the experience and whether the client will come back.
As with life, the spa experience involves many complex interactions and rhythms. Take scheduling for example. What are the busiest days, hours and high seasons of the spa? What is the ideal treatment time for a massage, signature treatment or spa package? Do you change the treatment menu to adjust to the changes in the season? How much transition time do you need for the spa guest to maximize their experience, and keep them moving to the next treatment to keep your schedule, yet not rush them? Do you have a rest period built into your treatment program to maximize results? What is your turnaround time between treatments to maximize profits, yet keep your technical staff energized and motivated? How long should a shift be for a massage therapist? What about for the other workers? What is the optimal work week for a massage therapist, receptionist, or spa director? I believe this element will come quickly to the forefront as professionals and consumers begin to create language and meaning as to its importance to the healing process.
I would be remiss if I did not mention the importance of dreams to the 10th element. Dr. Elson Hass, author of Staying Healthy with the Seasons, finds that "regular dreaming awareness suggests that you are close to balance between your inner and outer worlds." For example, "busy/type A" personalities are often unable to relax and often do not sleep well or dream. This causes them to get sick and be forced to rest to recharge their batteries-sound familiar? Conversely, the visionary whose primary focus is the immaterial world can also be out of balance with too much dreaming. They may experience greater physical-mental stress, age faster, and appear confused.
I believe this exploration of balance and integration between the inner and outer world, the physical and nonphysical worlds, is fundamental. Practically speaking, that is why the rest period after a spa treatment is so important. This is where true healing occurs; it occurs from within. For example, the most common problem with hydrotherapy treatments is the lack of a rest period after the body's core temperature has been elevated. Even 5-15 minutes can give your client the chance to achieve homeostasis, and solidify an inner intention. I have often reflected on how important the surrender of one's own personal time is to the ritual of the spa experience. Giving control of one's time over to another with the intention of personal healing is about trust. In a time-impoverished culture that is struggling for balance, this first step is analogous to the first step of the spa journey, ousia insight. Only the client as journeyer can begin on his or her own, by opening the doors to trust, or to truth. It is heartening to note that the essence behind the massage industry is creating the space for this deep unspoken interchange.
There is something magical about a great massage or spa treatment. It is not just the touch, the products or the decor. It is the interchange between client and therapist that creates the quality of space. The elusive rhythm of touch, eyes and smiles, time surrendered, time honored -- this is what makes a memorable experience. Time, space and rhythms are the key to transformation, not just for the individual, but for the therapist and society at large. The immortal chant of nature's rhythm is calling us to dance. Let's listen.
Click here for previous articles by Robin Zill, LMT.
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