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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.).
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.
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 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.
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.
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.
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!
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
December, 2013, Vol. 13, Issue 12
Industry Leaders Share Their Five Keys to Business Success
By Marshall Dahneke and Jean Shea
The numbers vary depending on the study you read, but generally, the survival rate for a new small business after five years is less than 50 percent. Businesses fail for many reasons however, in this article, we'll focus on some of the key things you can do to help your business succeed.
Through our experiences, we've come to believe success is attainable for most by being optimistic, learning from failures, embracing your weaknesses, involving your team and staying on track. We also believe those in the massage profession have a better than average chance of survival due to their indisputable passion.
Within reason, what you believe is what you will achieve or become. "Attitude is the prophet of my future." Choose to believe and you'll find success to be a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Adversity in business is not an "if" but a "when." One of the biggest success factors is a business owner who does not get discouraged, but instead is motivated by obstacles. Nothing easy is worthwhile and nothing worthwhile is easy. Real success requires consistent hard work and dedication. Commit to what you love, love what you do and don't be afraid to take action. Think big and ask what you can change or add to the way business is currently being done. However, be aware that the payoff may not immediate. Be patient.
Fail Fast, Fail Frequently, Fail Forward
What is the fastest way to learn? To fail! Most of us need to change our view of failure. We all fail. In fact, failure is necessary and you can't afford to not take risks. Have the courage to try new things. Take risks often — just avoid "bet the ranch" decisions. Take risks in digestible, bite size chunks.
And when you fail, strive to fail fast — identify your mistakes quickly; fail frequently — take manageable risks; and fail forward — learn from failure to innovate and become more efficient. You'll then view failure as the integral path to success. Get outside of your comfort zone. Nothing will change until you take action to change it. At best, strive to create an environment where it is okay to fail. When you do, you'll have an environment that is healthy and conducive for learning, creativity and growth.
Most people can embrace new ideas, diversity and even change, yet seldom can someone embrace their own weaknesses. It's human nature to want to be perceived favorably. But personal weaknesses, if left undiscovered or ignored, can make things very difficult in business. We were most successful when we embraced our weakness — being small — and showing our customers how that benefited them. They received personal and intimate customer service because we knew them. We don't try to do everything. We simply focus on being great at what we do.
You may ultimately want to improve your perceived weaknesses, i.e., grow a small company into a larger company, but in the process, determine how your weaknesses may be a strength. If you view them as strengths, your customers will as well. When running a business, maximizing your personal strength is important, but it doesn't guarantee you success. You need to be clear about and embrace your weaknesses. For example, if you dislike math, hire an expert to do your taxes. If you're not a great writer, don't put pressure on yourself to create epic blog posts or fancy newsletters each week. Focus on smaller blog posts and simple newsletters. The opposite of success isn't failure; the opposite of success is doing nothing. Find those glaring holes in your game, dedicate a bit of time and energy and be amazed at the results. Remember, the only expert on you, is you.
Involve Your Team
The leaders who work most effectively never say, "I." That's not because they have trained themselves not to say it, they simply don't think in that singular term. They think "we" and they think "us." They understand their job is to make the team function well. They accept responsibility and don't sidestep it, but "we" gets all the credit. They also learn how to become a true team player.
The benefits you gain from being a team player are:
Stay On Track
How important are the details in running a business? Very! Any dream without a plan will become a nightmare. Success versus failure often rests on paying attention to the details. Know what it is that you want to do and develop a plan to get there. You should create both a one-year business plan and a longer-term strategic plan. Establish metrics and milestones to define your pathway to success and pay attention to progress. If you discover you are not on track, ask why. Don't give up on your plan too quickly. Ask questions – are your strategies and metrics solid or flawed? Adjust by making course corrections. The trajectory of the first Apollo moon shot was carefully calculated well before launch, but required hundreds of course corrections after launch to successfully reach the moon.
Maybe your plan isn't to change the world; it's simply to change your life. You can do that by believing in your plan, staying optimistic, having the courage to face and overcome challenges, being willing to fail, embracing your weaknesses to leverage your strengths and building and supporting a team that complements your strengths.
You don't have to change the world to be considered a success. Changing your world in a positive way is success. Go accomplish something great, one step at a time. You're very likely to improve someone else's life in the process. And isn't that what it's really all about?
Marshall Dahneke is the President and CEO of Performance Health, makers of Biofreeze and Thera-Band products. He has been an advocate of giving back to the massage community and is a proud supporter of the Massage Therapy Foundation and numerous humanitarian awards.
Jean Shea is the Founder and President of BIOTONE, one of the leading manufacturers of massage lubricants in the United States. Her company has funded critical research by the Touch Research Institute in the area of massage with breast cancer patients. Currently, they support the Massage Therapy Foundation Community Service Grants to help make massage available to all communities.
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