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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.
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!
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.
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
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?
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.
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.).
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
February, 2014, Vol. 14, Issue 02
WIBB Exclusive: Steps to Make 2014 Your Best Year Ever
By Stephanie Beck
This is a good time of year to be planning to cultivate new growth. It doesn't matter whether you are just starting a practice or if you have been a massage therapist for a while, to get the best results, you will need to have a clearly developed plan.
I realize that answer is not sexy or complicated; it isn't a magic pill or a button to push. It just requires a little bit of time and thought. Sounds too simple right? Sometimes I come across people who ask, how is that going to help me? I'm a sole practitioner or I work for someone else, why do I need a plan? Think about this, when you start a massage, you have an end result in mind, right? You were taught a series of steps or procedures you use every time someone is on your table, correct? Depending on your training, you may start with the client in supine or prone position and either the head or feet but each time you begin a massage you always follow a series of steps (a plan), sound about right?
You were trained to follow this series of action steps and you are now able to perform a massage without having to really think about what comes next, but being able to concentrate on achieving the best results right?
So, take on that same mindset when you are approaching your practice. Develop that plan so you do not have to think about what to do next. What do you want your end result to be? Do you want to expand to a 20 room massage clinic? Do you want three more massage clinics in your area? Do you want to build the practice up to a sustainable income and be able to sell it? Do you want to maintain your current status and income and be able to continue working the same amount of hours for the next 10 years? What is your desired result?
When we first start working with our clients, we have to invest some time understanding what it is they want to achieve both short term and long term and what the final results should be. This is an important step not to be missed even if you have been in practice for any amount of time. Spend a few minutes to really think about what you want to achieve.
Avoid being a practitioner who starts "doing" lots of projects without thinking it through. Ultimately, what happens is they get so busy "doing" things they might see some initial growth, but inevitably it stagnates and pretty soon they find themselves working harder and harder and going nowhere. Sound familiar?
Maybe you can relate to feeling like you are stretched too thin and it isn't that the projects aren't great ideas; it's just that you are only one person trying to do it all. Or maybe you have others around you working and you are all working hard but you are so busy working "in" your practice instead of "on" your practice that you aren't getting the results you really want. Can you see how that might happen? Trust me, we have all been there!
So, before getting to a breaking point or worse yet, burnt out and ready to quit, give yourself permission to STOP. Now, take a breath. Then, retrain yourself to concentrate on what it is you enjoy doing most? This is so stinking simple, if you are like me, I try to over think it or complicate it too much of the time. Just ask yourself this question: "What do I enjoy doing more than anything else in the world?" And that answer, no matter what it is, is what you should be doing.
Now, I would assume for the majority reading this, the answer might be something similar to helping clients feel better. To which I ask, that's great and how do you do that? For some, one way to make the client feel better is giving a hot stone massage, for others it might be some cranial sacral or deep tissue sculpting; for me that could mean setting up a Facebook ads campaign, writing a series of auto-responders, redesigning a website or sharing my thoughts in a new book.
Here is the BIG take away, you need to figure out what is it in life that brings you the most joy when you perform it. And that, my friend, is what you should be doing daily above anything else!
Once you figure out what brings you the most joy, now determine what the plan is so all you have to do is do that one thing that makes you the happiest. To help you organize this into a format here are some steps.
Start by compiling a list of where your practice is today: Be specific, how many clients you have, where you work, how many hours a week, what is your cost per treatment, what does it cost to get a new client? What is the initial value of a client and what is the life time value of a client? (If you don't have clients yet or don't have all the answers, then list what you need to have to support your expenses.)
List where you want to be and when you want it to happen; be specific about it. How many clients do you want to have? How many hours to you want to work? Where do you want to work? In a perfect day, what would happen? When do you want all of this to take place? Include all variables of your practice: personal, professional and financial.
Imagine it is one year from today. List out what must have happened personally, professionally and financially to have made this the BEST year ever and describe what happened and how it made you feel.
Ask yourself what is the main challenge keeping you from achieving that goal (the best year ever)? More than likely there is more than 1 challenge, not to worry, keep making a list until you have all the challenges listed.
Review the list of challenges and identify the possible solutions for each of the challenges. If you don't know a specific solution to the challenge then list a solution that might help you achieve that solution. For example, you may need a website but you don't know how to build a website or even who to go to find a person to build one, so who are you going to ask or what are you going to do to potentially find the solution. (Ask friends? Look online for reviews? Ask your instructor? The goal is to list the best solution or a way in which you can get a solution to the challenge so everything has an answer or a way to start finding a solution, make sense?)
Separate the solutions into categories identifying them as "things you can do," "things you should be doing" and "things for someone else to do." Here's a hint. Those items in the "things you should be doing" category are the things you enjoy doing the most! Therefore, this should be a very limited category. So if you don't enjoy doing them, they belong in one of the other categories. Also, consider there may be things you "can" do yourself, however, spend some time really contemplating the items in this category. Evaluate if that is the BEST use of your time management or money and how quickly you want to achieve your goal. The best result for the "can" do list might be to move it to the list for someone else to do.
Prioritize your solutions to help you make next year the BEST year ever! In other words, which items do you need to do first in order to achieve your goal?
When you complete this exercise, you should have an action plan, with a list of challenges and prioritized solutions so you know where to begin and what action you need to take next. Now that you have the action plan we can start working on the individual components.
So, here is the challenge. Submit your list challenges for things you can do or items someone else should be doing in the comments below. I will help you with each of these on a monthly basis. I will provide solutions or recommendations based on my expertise, insight and support. I look forward to working with you to help make 2014 the BEST year ever!
Click here for more information about Stephanie Beck.
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