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Reducing the Autogenic Inhibition Reflex: Making Weak Muscles Strong
The autogenic inhibition (AI) reflex is a sudden relaxation of a muscle in response to excess tension.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
We Get Letters & Email
A House Divided? (May 1 issue) provoked significant response from readers. Here are several of the surprisingly similar comments we received.
Integrating Art with Clinical Practice for Patients with PTSD: The Artemis Project
Are you restricted by those one-on-one clinic dynamics? Why not join colleagues and clients in experimental group settings? Three of us volunteered to do just that in Austin on behalf of women veteranss from all branches of the service.
Marijuana, Apathy and Chinese Medicine, Part 1
This article was written in response to the unheeded acceptance of marijuana as a harmless substance that potentially does good when used for the medical relief of pain.
The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine
My Masters thesis was titled, "The Challenges of Integrating Eastern and Western Medicine," which highlighted several reasons why it is hard for these two worlds to mix.
Our Biggest Challenges to Compete in Wellness Care
In the first article in this four-article series [May 1 DC], I made the case that chiropractors should either embrace offering lifestyle wellness in their practices or face the possibility of losing their place in the wellness care marketplace.
First Do No Harm?
There's no questioning the frightening nature of breast cancer, which strikes one in eight women in the U.S. – eclipsed only by skin cancer in terms of prevalence.
A Poor Choice for Pain Relief
Acetaminophen is the most popular pain reliever in the U.S., accounting for an estimated 27 billion annual doses as of 2009. With 100,000-plus hospital visits a year by users, it's also the most likely to be taken inappropriately.
PCOM Granted Regional Accreditation
Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) recently announce it has received regional accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). This achievement reflects five years of hard work on the part of faculty, staff, and students.
The Acupuncturist's Problem
I want share with you some observations and insights into what seems to be the most common problem my colleagues in the acupuncture profession struggles with. If you also struggle with this problem, I hope you get a valuable "aha" moment from reading this.
Spieth Thanks His Chiropractor After Historic Masters Win
Jordan Spieth didn't just capture the hearts of golf enthusiasts worldwide with his record-setting, wire-to-wire victory at the 79th Masters Tournament.
The Tide is Rising in the Acupuncture Profession
Former President Ronald Regan said, "When the tide rises all boats float." The tide is rising for the acupuncture profession. Many forces outside the profession are helping the tides to rise.
Medicine is Clumsy, Don't You Be
All medical systems have clumsiness in them. If the technique isn't, the practitioner is. Everyone in every form of medicine is striving to improve. That is why we call it practice.
Giving Vets the Care They Deserve
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers the largest integrated health care system in the United States.
5 Tips for Using Pinterest to Market Your Practice
Pinterest is a very popular, but often under-utilized, social media platform where people can bookmark, or "pin," fun and interesting things from all across the internet.
Leg-Length Inequality and Pelvic Fixation: A New Approach to the Negative Derifield (Part 2)
As we noted in our previous article, with a positive Derifield (+D), the doctor observes the reactive (shorter) leg in the prone position that becomes longer or "crosses over" in the flexed position.
Green Tea Improves Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects
Publishing their results in the journal Nutrients in May 2014, researchers showed that drinking the equivalent of 2-4 cups of brewed green tea (or bottled tea) daily improved cognitive function or reduced the progression of cognitive dysfunction in elderly subjects.
Animal Acupuncture: A Case Study in the Treatment of Traumatic Injury in the Equine
The rise of animal acupuncture in the U.S. began in the early 1970's as a result of the work by members of the National Acupuncture Association in Westwood, Calif.
ACA or ICA: Which Best Represents You?
Last June, I was honored to represent Texas ICA members as their representative assemblyman at the ICA Annual Meeting in Kansas City.
Rethinking Musculoskeletal Pain – A Public Health Perspective
The American Public Health Association (APHA) is the world's oldest and largest association of its kind, founded more than 140 years ago and boasting over 25,000 members.
How Much Do You Know About the Benefits of Birds Nest?
Edible bird's nest is the nest made by the Swiftlet bird of Southeast Asia that is usually prepared as a soup and prized in Chinese culture as a healthful delicacy.
October, 2011, Vol. 11, Issue 10
Transforming Your CranioSacral Practice
By Sharon Desjarlais, CC
Amy Lewis, LMT, CST, used to treat her CranioSacral practice the same way most hands-on therapists treat theirs: as a place for individual clients to relieve long-held patterns of stress and pain.Each time she moved, from Hawaii to California to Nevada, she followed that model to fill her practice again and again and again.
Yet over the years, Amy couldn't ignore the nagging sensation that had been following her. While she loved facilitating hands-on sessions, she felt like a teacher and a change-agent at heart, one who yearned to help far more clients by teaching them how to align with their "healthy daily rhythms."
Do you, too, feel the call to do more and to be more than your CranioSacral practice allows? You can resist the urge, but you'll also restrict your impact in three essential ways:
This year, Amy made the leap from hands-on practitioner to holistic business owner. Follow her lead and you can also reach more clients than you ever have. How? By embracing these three essential keys.
Key #1: Uplevel Your Identity
One of the biggest issues blocking therapists from expanding into a holistic business is how they look at themselves. Thoughts like, "I'm just a massage therapist," or "I'm just a bodyworker," groove neurological pathways in our brains that not only dictate how we think and feel about ourselves, but which actions we feel capable of taking. And our actions will either empower us or restrict us.
To uplevel your practice, it helps to uplevel your internal identity first. One easy way is to step into the shoes of your Inner Mentor. Mentors are people who inspire us by their actions, even when we're not consciously aware of it. By tapping into the memories of your favorite mentors, you can begin to see yourself in empowering new ways. Give it a try. Imagine someone you admire standing in front of you. Make the vision as vivid as you can. If it's black and white, change it to color. If it's fuzzy, make it clear. If it's far away, bring it front and center. Now take a few moments to appreciate the positive qualities you see in this person. Then, literally take a step forward until you're in your mentor's space and imagine aligning with all those qualities you respect.
By stepping into the shoes of your Inner Mentor, you ignite those characteristics and resources within you, because the psychological mechanism of "projection" works two ways. Just as we unconsciously project traits we don't like about ourselves onto other people, we also project our positive qualities that may feel a bit too big for us to step into. As Marianne Williamson wrote in her book, A Return to Love, "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us." When you use your Inner Mentors to illuminate yourself, you can see your potential from a much higher vantage point. And then you can more easily expand your practice along with your vision.
Key #2: Design Your Own Signature System
Years ago, Dr. John Upledger developed the 10-Step Protocol for facilitating a CranioSacral session. I once asked him what moved him to create it, expecting a complex response. Instead, he said simply, "Because therapists were asking for it." As it turns out, when he first started teaching cranial work to massage therapists in the 1980s, the concept was so new that he had a tough time convincing people to sign on. So he packaged his techniques into the 10-Step Protocol to make it easier to grasp. When therapists discovered they'd be learning a step-by-step system, they were suddenly able to see themselves practicing it and they began signing up. The Upledger Institute has gone on to train more than 100,000 therapists worldwide.
Even as a solo practitioner, you can inspire that same confidence when potential clients find out you have a step-by-step system for solving their health challenges. Why? Because people trust systems. When you have, for instance, a 3-step system for transforming pain, stress and discomfort into vibrant health, they relax. And why not? You come across as the healthcare expert who's got it all figured out. The best part is, you don't even need to create anything new; you already embody it your signature system. On some level, you already know the steps every one of your clients needs to take over a series of sessions to move out of the pain they're experiencing to the results they want instead. Some may move down the path faster than others. Yet essentially, they all need to go through the same steps to become pain- and stress-free. When you map out those steps, you have a system you can use as a framework to design creative new programs and products for your business.
Consider Dave Tomlinson, RMT, CST-D, a CranioSacral Therapy instructor. He loves working hands-on, yet he feels drawn to help people shift their out of their self-perceived limitations. So he's developing a signature system that uses CranioSacral therapy to transform his clients limiting beliefs. Jeannine Wiest, LMT, CST, is passionate about both CranioSacral Therapy and creative writing. So she crafted a signature system that uses the principles of light-touch techniques to help authors tap into their hidden resources so their writing flows with depth, clarity and ease. Now, in addition to her hands-on work, she facilitates group workshops at beautiful retreat centers, like California's Joshua Tree and Idyllwild Arts. So rather than offering more hands-on sessions, have some fun and design your own a signature system. Look at the arc of your favorite clients' therapeutic journey and the results they've achieved. Which steps did they need to take to get from where they were when they first came to see you to the outcomes they're enjoying now? Outline those steps and you have a body of work that can help elevate your practice to a business.
Key #3: Create a Variety of Programs, Products and Price Points
There's a big misconception in the cranial world that prevents all too many big-hearted therapists from making a generous living. That is, because CranioSacral Therapy uses such a light touch, you can easily work on five, six, even seven clients in a day. The reality? Cranial work is often an end-of-the-line modality for people who've been in serious pain, stress and dysfunction for years. One day you might be working on an adult with head, neck and back pain that's gone in a session or two. But other days it may be a little boy lost in autism. Or a teenage athlete sidelined by migraines. Or a woman whose body is wracked with fibromyalgia. Or a man who woke up one morning to find his face half paralyzed with Bell's palsy.
These cases can be intense. Doing too many in a day can eventually lead to exhaustion and burn-out. So rather than stretch yourself too thin trying to squeeze in more sessions, follow a sustainable business model that can take you where you want to be in five years, not just five months.
One simple way is to divide the steps of your signature system into a series of programs based on outcomes and results. Amy Lewis used her signature system to create 6-week and 6-month programs tailored to women struggling with one of four specific conditions:
"I was tired of going session to session with clients rather than offering them something that represented a deeper commitment to their health," Amy said. And because each program is oriented to specific pain points and results, she's attracting new clients who appreciate her work and who stay with her a lot longer. They're investing in themselves through Amy's business in much healthier ways.
Like Amy, you too can create programs and products in a variety of formats and price points that more people can access, such as:
You are now able to tap into the value of leverage by serving more people in less time with less effort. Sound good to you? Then embrace these three essential keys and become a holistic business owner. When you uplevel your identity, design your signature system, and offer signature programs and products, you multiply your impact and your income. Then imagine who you get to be.
Click here for more information about Sharon Desjarlais, CC.
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