resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
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.
5 Simple Steps to Create an Effective Marketing Calendar
In the educational experience of most healthcare practitioners, business and marketing are overlooked topics.
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.
Sleep, Less Sleep or No Sleep?
I had a dream I wasn't getting enough sleep. It was a very realistic dream, even though I was probably slightly awake and not really deep dreaming. Most likely I had been dozing, caught in that twilight of sleep and wakefulness.
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.
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.
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.
Turning a Blind Eye to History – and Reality
The American Medical Association is taking the Supreme Court's Feb. 25, 2015 decision exactly as it always does – by turning a blind eye to history, legal precedent and reality.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Term Limits: What's in a Word?
It was the French historian and philosopher Voltaire who once declared the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.
Functional Hip Impingement (Part 1)
Every time I sit down to write an article, I realize how much more there is to know about musculoskeletal pain. I also learn something new every time. (I want to give special thanks to Lucy Whyte Ferguson for assisting with this article.)
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.
A View From the ER
The University of Western States has inked an innovative agreement with local nonprofit health system Legacy Health whereby UWS sports-medicine fellows can experience observational clinical rotations in emergency-room settings within the Legacy system.
Optimism = Compassion = Trust
A randomized clinical trial recently published online in JAMA Oncology examined how patients viewed their doctor based upon how the practitioner presented bad news to the patient.
Talking to Patients About Lumbar Facet Denervation (Medial Branch Neurotomy)
Lumbar facet denervation, more appropriately termed medial branch neurotomy (MBN), is a procedure that may be considered when patients suffer from recalcitrant non-radicular axial back and/or leg pain.
Low Back Pain in Professional Golf: A Common Muscular Relationship
Every sport creates its own unique demands on the body. Some sports require such a myriad of body positions that assessing pathology is often difficult and unpredictable.
Applying the Thin Skull Principle
The "thin skull" principle, also known as the "you take your victim as you find them" principle, is a legal principle that can be summed up by the following statement.
December, 2012, Vol. 12, Issue 12
Dealing with Clients Who Put Themselves Down
By Ben Benjamin, PhD
Anyone working in the helping professions is bound to encounter individuals who are highly self-critical, continually describing themselves as flawed or deficient in some way. As massage therapists, we might hear clients say, "I'm horribly out of shape" or "I know I should stop being so lazy and take better care of myself."
There are two types of problems with this type of thinking. The most obvious problem is an emotional one. Having negative thoughts about oneself tends to generate negative emotions — sadness, frustration, hopelessness and even despair.
Less obvious are the practical consequences. When people blame or attack themselves, they make it more difficult to understand and resolve the challenges they're facing. Vague, accusatory generalizations like, "I've been irresponsible" or "I'm so out of shape," distract the person from the specific facts that they feel badly about, such as not exercising at all for the past week, or being unable to climb stairs without getting out of breath. It starts to seem as though they need to make a profound, global transformation either in their personality (somehow becoming a responsible person) or in their body (somehow becoming "in shape"). That's a daunting prospect.
In our role as health care practitioners, we have an opportunity to help our clients approach these issues in a more constructive way. To do that, we need to resist the temptation to simply disagree with them ("No, you're doing great") or to criticize their thinking ("You're way too hard on yourself"). These responses can either lead to an argument ("You're just saying that to make me feel better") or give the person more fuel to attack themselves ("You're right; I need to have a more positive attitude. I've always had low self-esteem").
Instead, our task is to refocus the conversation. Help the person to identify the specific facts that are bothering them, and then problem-solve what they could do about them. Suppose they've fallen behind on exercising. You might help them to consider which factors in their life have supported regular exercise (such as having a workout partner or setting a regular time to exercise each day), and which have stood in their way (perhaps their workout partner moved away, or a work commitment has interfered with their regular exercise time). With these specifics in mind, they'll have a much easier time coming up with solutions — such as finding a new workout partner, setting a new time to exercise and so on.
Encourage your client to come up with these ideas themselves rather than simply giving your own suggestions. In that way, you can help them shift from feeling helpless and ineffective to being empowered to make positive changes in their life. In my own practice, I've often found that gently guiding individuals to strategize about their problems — rather than simply blaming themselves for them — is one of the greatest contributions I can make to their long-term health and well-being.
Click here for more information about Ben Benjamin, PhD.
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