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Improving Our Political Effectiveness
The November 2014 elections are right around the corner; members of Congress, governors and state legislators are all running. Now is a good time to talk frankly about our overall political involvement.
Get Ready For AOM Day
This year, AOM Day 2014 falls on Friday, (October 24th). This is a great opportunity to make your AOM Day celebration or event even bigger by extending it throughout the weekend!
The Truth About Herbs
I appreciate the effort and research put into the article written in the June issue of Acupuncture Today regarding pesticides and Chinese herbs.
The Spirit of the Point
After receiving a large amount of positive feedback on my San Zhen Protocols series, I have decided to focus this article on some relevant clinical aspects of acupuncture therapy prior to moving on to San Zhen Protocols III.
Thoracolumbar Syndrome: The Great Mimic
The thoracolumbar junction is a common area of joint dysfunction. The most obvious cause is dysfunctional breathing or lack of diaphragmatic breathing. Treating this breathing problem will ultimately be the long-term cure for the syndrome.
If You Get a Request for Records, Respond!
In our previous two articles, we discussed two of the main reasons for denial when chiropractic records are reviewed by Medicare contractors.
When Big Pharma Meets Chinese Medicine
Earlier this year, Bayer made a media splash with their decision to buy the Dihon Pharmaceutical Group Co., a Chinese TCM manufacturer.
Thoughts to Live By
When speaking to your patients about their health make sure to ponder the following points and have them assess if they are making themselves even more sick by the thoughts they have about life. Are these some of the traits and thoughts that your patients might have?
MPA Media Wins Seven Publishing Awards
MPA Media, publisher of Acupuncture Today, among other titles, has been recognized for editorial and design excellence with an unprecendented seven publishing awards by the ASBPE, the nation's largest organization for business-to-business publications.
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
Medicalization and Mindfulness
The past several years have seen a veritable explosion of research on mindfulness. Research abstracts we've published in each issue of Health Insights Today under the heading "Mind-Body News" have increasingly reported on studies about mindfulness interventions.
The Problem With Prolonged Sitting
We need to constantly talk to our patients about spending less time sitting and about what can go wrong with poor sitting postures. The fact is we sit too long in repetitive malpositions.
Rethinking GMO: Less Panic, More Context
Some of you may have noticed that after writing parts 1 and 2 of “Genetic Modification of Organisms for Human Consumption” a while back [Nov. 15, 2013 and Jan. 1, 2014 issues], part 3 never appeared.
A Healthy Dose of Failure is Vital to Your Success
As an acupuncturist I tend to see people after they have already suffered for years and "tried everything." They are so desperate for some relief that they want to know everything about how to get better, right now.
History of Animal Acupuncture: Part II
In Part I of this article, I had gone back to 1969 and tried to describe the atmosphere and events of that year that engulfed many of the younger generation, some who were all the core members of the National Acupuncture Association.
A Glimpse Into China's Top Brain Hospital
The sounds of the city pass through the open window are overwhelming the microphone - car horns, construction machinery - and then there's the family at the adjacent bed talking loudly on cell phones, yet you can still hear the faint beep of our patients monitoring equipment.
Let the Patient Tell Their Story
Often when a patient presents with an injury, they want to tell their story. People by nature like to talk about themselves, particularly when they're worried about their health.
The Science Behind Happiness
Are you happy right now? Whether yes or no, there are a myriad of reasons why you feel that way. A whole academic discipline has developed to find out what causes or obstructs happiness, and how to amplify it.
Uncle Sam Needs You
Scrutiny into the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) continues to grow after efforts to reform the DVA by the former Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki, were deemed "a stunning period of dysfunction" by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
Help Secure Our Future by Sharing It
The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) conducts one of the most comprehensive surveys of the U.S. chiropractic profession every 4-5 years.
A Commonly Missed Spinal Fixation: The Upper Lumbar Spine (Part 1)
When we think of lower back pain, we tend to think in terms of the lower lumbar spine and the SI joint. These joints and their discs are obviously important. However, we tend to miss fixations that occur just above – in the upper lumbar spine. Three questions come to mind: 1) Why is the upper lumbar spine so important? 2) Why do we miss the fixations here? 3) How can we adjust them?
Healing Community Trauma in Israel and Palestine
It's the beginning of August and Israel and Hamas have just agreed to a 72-hour ceasefire after a month of brutal fighting. In the last four weeks, 1,830 Palestinians and 67 Israelis have been killed.
June, 2003, Vol. 03, Issue 06
By Steve Capellini, LMT
Author's Note: The Spa Letters column features news, personality profiles, trends, and plenty of professional possibilities for LMTs in the spa industry.The style is epistolary, meaning the articles are letters to a fictional massage therapist friend of the author.
So, you're on the hunt for your new spa location, and you're trying to come up with a name that will catch the public's interest and broadcast your spa's true mission at the same time. It's a time of excitement and pandemonium! You haven't been this excited about creating something since your 6th-grade science project.
The more focused and forward-thinking you are at this early stage, the better the finished product will turn out. It's extremely important to take your time, step back, take stock of the overall situation, and formulate your plan of attack.
In the case of a new spa, the plan of attack is also called the "business plan." If you don't have one, you're sunk before your ship of dreams even drifts away from the dock. So, let's begin by talking about that plan of yours.
Care and Feeding for Your Business Plan
In your case, it's true that your partner Barbara has more (much more) capital to invest in your spa project than you do, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't become intimately familiar with every aspect of the business plan, including the financial health of the fledgling enterprise. The $10,000 you've pitched in is no meager sum, especially since it represents over 90 percent of your life savings.
Barbara was fortunate enough to have a corporate lawyer in the family, who drew up a business plan with your help. If you didn't have this family connection to fall back on, it might have been tempting to forego the business-plan idea altogether. I mean, why bother with all that paperwork? You don't need to attract outside investors at this point. You're thinking that what really counts is the logo; color scheme; name; location; and stuff like that. Right, Lou?
There are several good reasons to have a business plan before you take another step toward creating your spa. The plan will solidify what exactly you're attempting to create. Refining the details of capital investment; management structure; client demographics; marketing plans; and expense budgets will allow you to see your business existing in the "real world."
Do yourself a favor: Spend some time getting to know each and every detail of that plan the lawyer created. Although you're a "right-brained" therapist with little interest in such matters, you need to know and care about what it says for the spa to be a success right from the start.
It might be a good idea to get to know the general structure of business plans more intimately; this will help familiarize you with what business is all about - a must for nonbusiness types such as yourself. Go to amazon.com, or any other book-related Web site, and type in "business plans"; you'll find a load of books on the subject. Have you thought about taking a class at the local community college on business management? You are, after all, going into business. I've seen too many spa owners disregard this obvious fact since opening a spa seems more like a healing vision than a nuts-and-bolts reality. Do yourself a favor: Get real and study up.
As you're boning up on business practices, you also are out scouting your spa's perfect location. It's fun and spiritual putting the soul of your idea into the body of a building and giving birth to a being, not just a business.
You've told me about three possibilities that have intrigued you and Barbara so far: an old house downtown; a storefront in a busy mall; and half a floor in a medical office building. As is often the case, there are pros and cons to each option:
You're probably familiar with the saying that the three most important things in business are location, location, location. That's partially true, but what that axiom fails to emphasize is there's more involved than the GPS coordinates of the building you're considering. There's something else going on, too; it's called "energy."
I know it's weird, and some massage therapists are already marginalized for couching things in "new-agey" terms, but I truly believe that below the surface, energy levels are a factor to business locations.
Some locations can't generate successful business, no matter who or what goes in there. Even the best businesses can't succeed in a "jinxed" location. Potential customers just seem to pass it by, as if there were an invisible gate blocking the entrance. You know the spots - those spaces where one business after another has come and gone over and over again. Of course, you're not a native of your new city, and so you don't know about the history of each site; but Barbara does. You can also ask local residents or look up county business records.
In addition to practical considerations such as lease terms, the amount of rent you'll be paying, zoning rules, etc., it would be wise to look into the background "energy" of the structure. Who has been in there? Why did they leave? What is the gestalt of this old home you're considering? What types of clientele frequent the mall in which the storefront is located?
I have a friend and former student who settled on an old home, similar to the one you're considering. It's on the main street in the busy tourist town of Provincetown, Cape Cod. She faced a lot of challenges restoring a 150-year-old building, but she made the right choice. The building had never been used for a business, so she created her own energy there, and it worked. She's now opening a second location.
You can tell I'm leaning toward the old house downtown, can't you? Don't let that influence you too much. You and Barbara need to figure things out gradually, in your own time. The next time I have the chance to write, I'll give you some ideas regarding two other hot topics that are surely burning in your brain about now: your new spa's name and its mission.
Until then, take care.
Click here for previous articles by Steve Capellini, LMT.
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