As chiropractors, we all have essentially the same mission statement: to contribute to people's health through chiropractic care and inspire them to move toward wellness. Fulfilling the first part of the statement is easy for a chiropractor.
People want to learn from us how to experience wellness. Chiropractors are the leaders of natural health care. We have the knowledge; we must share it. We must educate people and inspire them. Here are some tips you can use in your practice to have an inspiring impact on those who cross your path and, indirectly, ask you to bring wellness into their life.
Take the time to think about your mission as a chiropractor – and as a human being, too. What is the purpose of your life? What is the reason you're getting up every morning and going to your chiropractic center? What impact do you want to have on the people around you? Write it down in a clear, short and powerful sentence. Then frame it and hang it in your chiropractic center, where people can see it every time they come to visit you. Let them know your life mission and the purpose of your practice. It will inspire them to seek out more of what you can offer.
Walk the Talk
Be the person you ask your patients to be. You want people to be healthy? Be healthy. You want them to exercise, to eat well and to control their stress level? Do it yourself first. Then share your experiences, your accomplishments, your challenges and your tips, knowing what you're talking about.
Be an inspiring wellness leader so they'll want to be as fit as you are, they'll want to eat what you're eating, they'll want to read what you're reading, etc. Start today to move toward wellness so you're prepared to inspire people to do it, too. Get super fit, eat very well, drink source water, get in contact with nature regularly to clear your mind and control your stress level, rest sufficiently, and get adjusted!
When you have achieved that wellness point, share your experience with patients. While they're getting adjusted (or right after, if you prefer to adjust in silence), make sure to have an inspiring discussion about your path to wellness and the next step they can take to reach your wellness level. Share great information about the most recent updates on the wellness lifestyle.
Here are some of the topics you can discuss: how to exercise; what type of exercise would be beneficial; the importance of getting outside and in contact with nature; "green" smoothie recipes; what to add to a salad to make it the perfect meal; family hiking trails or wonderful trails you have hiked; and new outdoor activities you've recently tried. Tell them how you feel doing all those wellness things. Share the story of public people who've achieved wellness goals, such as losing weight or hiking Mount Kilimanjaro, for example.
Decorate your office with inspiring materials. Have pictures of your children pursuing the wellness lifestyle; put up a wellness poster that shows people achieving wellness: someone climbing a mountain, kayaking, running a race, etc. Bring nature into your office. Have plants, fresh flowers, nature poster and nature music.
For patients who arrive at your office before their scheduled appointment, make sure to feed them with inspiring materials. It could be articles about the health benefits of meditation, a list of 10 films to laugh with the kids, how to boost your immune system, how to exercise, the benefits of superfoods, etc. It could also be a photo album of yourself enjoying your wellness lifestyle with your family (your last trek with your children, your chiropractic mission trip, your participation at a sporting event as a chiropractor, etc.).
If you have magazines for them to read, choose them carefully. Be sure they'll get inspired by what they read. Outdoor magazines, wellness parenting magazines (such as Pathways), and so on, will inspire them to move toward wellness. Some books can inspire them, too: Chicken Soup for the Chiropractic Soul, raw recipes books, stretching guides, natural remedies books, inspirational quotes books, yoga books and others can all prove inspirational to your patients.
Ask everyone for their e-mail address; then ask if you can send them your wellness newsletter each month. All those great articles you're writing for patients to read when they come to your office can also be compiled into a newsletter and sent to people who give you their e-mail – even those who haven't come to your chiropractic center for a while. You can inspire them, too; it could be a gratitude gift for having helped you build your practice.
A Web site represents a great opportunity to inspire people to move toward wellness, even those you don't know, so they can read your articles, read your mission statement and see your wellness pictures. Make sure to add your wellness newsletters to your site every month.
That is a great opportunity to share the wellness lifestyle with a group of people (ones you know and those you don't know). Make sure to prepare an inspiring presentation with lots of tips on the next steps they should take to move toward wellness. Have a concrete plan for your audience members; show them how to set their wellness goals and how to achieve them. Share your experience or someone else's inspiring story about their journey toward wellness. Share inspiriting quotes about wellness.
As B.J. Palmer stated more than a century ago, you never know how far-reaching something you may think, say or do today will affects the lives of millions tomorrow. Remember that you're an inspiration for those around you who want to achieve wellness. So be a wellness leader! Help them visualize clearly what it's like to live a wellness lifestyle. Fulfill you mission and inspire them to move toward wellness. I hope I've inspired you.
Dr. Isabelle Rousseau-Caron, a graduate of the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières, practices in Saint-Eustache, Québec, specializing in pediatric chiropractic and nutrition. She is a member of the Ordre des Chiropraticiens du Québec and can be contacted with questions and comments regarding this article via her practice Web site, www.passionchiropratique.com.