Framing chiropractic to make an impact

IlluminateVolume1_2014_smallNW: So, I’m sitting here with Ben Harvey who just gave a presentation at DG conference down here in Melbourne, where he was talking about, for the individual chiropractor, how to position themselves within the marketplace and how to pitch to that marketplace and also how to leverage that, so that they are really as effective as possible with the person that is sitting in front of them.

So Ben you are very busy with what you do within your own company helping people understand where they are at with their purpose, with their life and how to be most effective with that. And specifically for the chiropractor, how to be effective within their community, within their marketplace and changing the health of humanity around them. What fires you up about all of this? What’s the inspiration for you?

Ben Harvey: The main reason why I want to help chiropractors is because a while ago I was in New Zealand snowboarding for the very first time. And as fate would have it, I fell over and injured myself and was in an extreme amount of pain. I have never visited a chiropractor before. I had heard of what they did and what their services were; and I tracked down a chiropractor in Queenstown.

And I went and saw this lady. I had no idea what was going to happen. And she examined me and she had a chat with me and then she got me on the table and she did her miraculous healing on me. And I would say that the result was instantaneous. So for me to be able to get out of that level of pain so quickly it really did awaken me to a new style of healing and ever since that day I have had a warm place in my heart for the craft.

Because my parents had always warned me not to go see chiropractors, and you’ve got to avoid them and all that sort of stuff because I grew up in the era of all that misinformation that was out there.

quote001So that’s why I got into it, and I guess deep down what inspires me is knowing that people can do what they love and live life on their own terms. That is kind of the main driver for me like the core message of our company, Authentic Education, is to live your love.

So when we work with people, people often ask what do we sell and our product is freedom; that’s really what people buy from us. So they buy it in the form of educational CDs or multimedia resources or webinars. But people come to us for that freedom; the inherent knowing that you are born free and that you can do what you love and that you can follow your inspiration all the way through.

So we provide a series of programs that help people do that. So what I really love is meeting people who aren’t doing what they love, who are trapped in someone else’s idea of what life is meant to be like, probably living in accordance with someone else’s beliefs or someone else’s values and then in a very short period of time they are off doing what they are born to do.

That to me I guess would be the soul food for me.

That is what I like hearing about, when our clients say: I’m doing what I was born to do; I am doing what I love now.

I like that because I went through quite a journey myself of transformation throughout the years. And I’d say that is the core driver: knowing that people can do what they love and also get paid for it.

So it’s kind of a two-fold approach that we do here at the company: we like to help people make a difference but we also like to help people make money from making a difference. So I think the real concept that people come to us for is to make money with meaning and in doing so make a difference in other people’s lives.

So we structure our business around that, we focus mainly on difference makers. There are a lot of other companies out there that teach how to make money and they set up businesses, but we really direct it toward the difference maker. The person who wants to help humanity, the person who wants to evolve the way that we operate and really go out there and serve from that place becomes a healing.

So we like to tailor our courses to those people. So it is kind of funny we get hardcore business people that come to our programs and it doesn’t take long before they’re not really in sync with what we are doing.

We use the word love a lot we talk about healing a lot. We don’t use the word selling, we use the word healing because that is really what a sale is. A sale is to serve someone and improve the quality of their life. So our languaging is a lot different in our programs but we get the point across and that’s what lights me up.

NW: Yeah; so taking it from a more chiropractic perspective, what symptoms would a chiropractor have if they are not really living a free life, if they are living according to someone else’s rules? How would they be able to tell that they are not living that life of purpose?

BH: Yeah I think things that I look for is a sense of relief in people.

So when I know that someone is on purpose the number one comment that I get is that they breathe a sigh of relief; that is generally the first example or expression that someone gets in alignment. So if we’re looking for the symptoms first of all it would be feeling drained at the end of the day, that is a pretty simple symptom; feeling like you are pushing to get results is another kind of a simple symptom that comes across from that perspective.

Other symptoms are is that you are trying to live up to an expectation that you don’t know where it came from, would be a core symptom of that as well. Also wondering were you fit in and are you meant to be doing what you are doing. All these kinds of selfdoubts, those sorts of things they are really by-products of people not really living in accordance with what they want to be doing.

quote002So if we look at relief as an emotion, it’s generally expressed when a psychology rapidly transitions from pain to pleasure; the expression of that rapid transition is a feeling called relief. So when someone rapidly transitions from pain to pleasure in a psychological level, when they experience that relief what I have found is that the reason they are experiencing that relief is because the body is getting back into alignment, it is getting back into its state of homeostasis; it’s coming back into a balance point.

So one of the things that I like to do with people from a practical sense is say: alright you’ve got two paths in front of you; you can do it this way or that way. Because everyone is always doubting do I go this way or that way; there is generally tossing up between two ideas. One of them is truly who they are one of them is not. So I like to take that 12 months into the future and then just say: “look back towards now and in this moment from this vantage point 12 months in the future, which one of these two options is going to give you the most amount of authentic relief?”

It is just a simple way of looking at the world, but putting that time perspective in there quite often frees them up to think in accordance with what they want, not with what other people are telling them to do.

So that is one of the things that I always look for is that sigh of relief. And when I work with a client I want to hear it; I really want to hear that Ahhh, that’s what I want to be doing, that’s the thing.

But quite often we are being trapped, we’ve got values being injected in to us all the time. So, we are big on giving people permission.

quote003One of the things that I like to do with our clients is run them through a series of strengths evaluation as well. So quite often people know a lot about a certain topic and they are naturally good at certain things and they have these natural inherent strengths and they tend to fight those natural strengths because someone else has told them that you shouldn’t be doing those things.

And what I have found is you naturally developed a series of natural strengths over your life, then they are going to be beneficial; there is a reason that you develop them. And people like to feel naturally confident. At the end of the day, every human being likes to know that they are good at something and they like to know that they are naturally good at that.

So for example I am naturally good at selling, I have been selling my whole life but my whole life I have been trying to get out of selling. So I didn’t want to do it; I wanted to do something else. And I just kept denying it, because for some reason I’d been told that selling wasn’t a respectable career. It just had all these weird connotations to it: oh you are a sales person or you are this or you are that. So all of my life I have tried to run away from what I was naturally good at.

Then one day I just surrendered and said alright if I have got natural strengths in this then there must be a reason I developed it. And then it wasn’t long before I started to realise that selling is healing, and that the better you are at selling the quicker you can sell the new belief system, the quicker you can inspire someone to want to change their life, they quicker you can help them make a decision to act differently or to think differently.

So by surrendering to what I was naturally good at I was able to see that the skill was a core requirement of the rest of my life. So one of the things I look for in people is natural strengths: what is it that you are actually naturally good at and what do you naturally know a lot about. Because we tend to know a lot about what we like, but we are not always happy to share that with people.

quote004Are you afraid of the medical industry saying that you can’t think that way? Are you afraid of society or friends? What is the thing that you are afraid of that is actually stopping you from being who you truly are? Because I think everybody has their own unique healing technique. I think everyone has their own personal medicine. And I think if you have found yourself in the chiropractic industry you probably want to express that as fully as possible and leave that gift behind for other people.

But unfortunately because of fears people won’t fully express it all the way out. So I like to remove those fears from people, giving them the freedom to give themselves permission. And then in doing so seeing what they can add like I am sure in your career you have found different ways of doing things and more effective ways and what not because you are giving yourself permission to try something different, to try something a little bit unique and add your little spin on it and I think that is the beauty of healing.

Healing is an evolution that all of us as a collective consciousness get to improve, if we give ourselves permission to add that next bit to it, as opposed to feeling that we are trapped to one concept. So I think that is one of the core ideas that people need to look at is having the freedom and the courage to trust their intuition and go with that flow.

quote005It is kind of like, one of my teachers once said. He asked me to describe what letting go is and I tried all these different answers and he said: “No. Letting go is to never pick up again.” I thought, ok, that’s a bit deep. But as I sat and thought letting go is to never pick up again; what does he mean by that?

Then I thought alright so if I let go of cigarettes then I guess I will never pick up a cigarette again. So if I let go of my need to try and impress other people it means I never pick up the need to impress other people. So I started to get the idea that letting go is actually not picking up. And so quite often I find that people who are surrendering to their purpose, they no longer pick up the need to prove to other people.

So people who aren’t on purpose they are continually trying to prove a point. “You need to believe me, you need to understand this concept, you need to follow what I’m saying!” They are always trying to prove something because inherently in their heart they don’t have a knowing, they are chasing their beliefs.

So when you get onto purpose I find that not only do you stop trying to prove things; you just surrender into what is and you just experience the joy and fulfilling in just doing what you love.

So that is definitely what I found: people who aren’t in accordance with it are really heavily attempting to defend things and I find that’s definitely another one of the symptoms that happen to people that aren’t on purpose.

NW: Some great goals there and a lot of stuff that you covered in the presentation as well. And what is interesting for me, and I have heard you present a few times and have had a few chats with you, is that a lot of what you are talking about applies to the chiropractor, but it also applies obviously to every human being, which means the person in front of the chiropractor as well.

So what are some ways that a chiropractor could put some of this into play for the person in front of them? How can they really help the person heal through the lessons that you have to share?

BH: This is my belief on it anyway. I think every human being deep down has a desire to feel good. I think inherently people wake up in the morning wanting to feel better and if I was to look for the single common element of the human race, it’s that we all like to feel good. And the fact that we have got blood pumping through our body; that is another thing we have in common. But I look at that and think everyone has a desire to feel good and I think to myself what makes people feel good?

What makes people feel good is them feeling confident in doing a task that they are naturally skilled in and I know I’ve mentioned that before but it is a really big thing that if you got honest with someone who goes out there and says they are serving humanity and changing the world and you really ask them: why are you really doing that? I appreciate the altruistic benefits of it but, from a narcissistic point: why are you really doing this?

If they were to really be honest with you, they’d say: because I’m good at it. That’s what they would say: I really do this because I’m good at it. And it makes me feel good when I do it.

So as a chiropractor I think along with all the alignment that you do with the physical form you can also begin to question your patients as to: What makes you feel good? When do you naturally feel good? What makes you feel naturally competent? When do you feel most aligned with things? And even run them through a series of questions that you could leave with them, and they can go and discover that about themselves, and they can bring them back in the next session and you can discuss them and you can get them into alignment with these kinds of concepts.

quote006So if I was a chiropractor and a patient came to see me and I aligned their body we work with whatever was presenting, I think the next logical thing would be to have an actual conversation with them. And potentially run them through a series of questions that does identify the things that do naturally make them feel good and if they continue to do that then, I have found anyway, that people don’t create any more dis-ease in their physical form. Because when a system is in balance it tends not to have symptoms to remind you that you are out of balance.

I think when they come and present issues to you the deeper underlying problem that is presenting is that I’m not on purpose; I’m not doing what I love, I’m not listening to my intuition so now I need a louder response from my physical body. So I would do things like pop out vertebras and I will do things like sprain ankles and I will do things like get headaches. And I will start to present symptoms because I am not listening deep enough to my intuition.

So I’m a big fan of self-reflection, a big fan of meditation, I’m a big fan of doing your best to strengthen the muscle of intuition and testing it and getting it stronger and stronger just through different exercises. And I think as a chiropractor you can look at the session through those eyes.

I know as you study you learn these things anyway but sometimes you can get lost in the craft and potentially lose that connection of going even into a deeper level, rather than just dealing with the symptoms and moving on to the next patient. And I know not all chiros do it but it can happen it happens in any professions. But I would say I would be looking always for the cause as the cure.

So I run clients through it is about a 14-question questionnaire. That questions the positives and the negatives: so what are you naturally good at, what are you naturally bad at, what do you know a lot about what do you know a little bit about, what would your friends say you are great at, what would your friends say you are terrible at.

Because quite often in the contrast of what you are good at and what you are bad at really gives clarity. So a lot of the people out there would just question all the things that you are good at but I like to know the other side, I like to know the flip side of the coin.

NW: Yeah very interesting stuff. And things that are possibly very worthwhile for chiropractors to start to dive into and have a look at the person not only from a surface physical point of view but from a more holistic point of view.

So just like with your own chiropractic story you found that you went to a chiropractor because you had a physical symptom, you were in pain that pain went away from what the chiropractor did and you felt much better. And a lot of the chiropractors will have this story very commonly in their practice. We can be very good at helping people feel better and get back to less symptoms.

What we see is that once we have cleared the physical symptoms there is a whole other level of healing that can happen. But because people will relate so much to their physical self, it is often a challenge for us as that point to in a way “sell” chiropractic beyond the physical symptomatic relief. We often struggle beyond that point to keeping someone healthy and keep them on their journey so that they are functioning perfectly. Would you have a tip to help chiropractors “sell” the healing that goes beyond that initial symptomatic relief?

BH: At the congress I did a demo and one of the things that I often I explain to chiropractors and any practitioner for that matter is that it has a lot to do with the frame that you set around the client. And the frame is when you first meet somebody what frame of mind do you want them to think about ‘chiropractic.’ Because when they sit down they’re kind of a blank canvas but they are not really a blank canvas because they have been told about all of the different services.

So when you first it down with the client you have to frame them up correctly and one of the things that I like to train chiropractors on is using a prop and the prop is just a big thick towel.

And when you sit down with a client you sit opposite the client and you have a discussion with them and then you see if they want to play along. If they do you pull this towel out. And you talk them through their life; issues in their life, traumas they have had, relationship breakdowns; all sorts of things. And every moment that they’ve got a misalignment or a charged event you twist the towel and you keep twisting the towel. And it won’t take long before the towel locks up into a very tight towel that has no movement whatsoever.

And as you are having this conversation about their life and you are twisting the towel each time they talk about an event, they are unconsciously getting a pattern or a representation of their life being expressed through this towel but this towel representing their spine and the tension in their life. And then once the towel is locked up quite tight you ask them is there much movement in the towel, is there much flexibility in the towel?

quote007As they are holding onto this towel they can get an understanding of it because it is in front of them. The part of the brain that makes decisions needs patterns and imagery and visuals to really assist in that decision making process. So I find that chiropractors that use the towel can easily represent what is actually taking place inside the mind and the body.

Then you explain every time you see a chiropractor this towel loosens up little bit. And so they understand that it is not just not one visit; so you will say the first time you see me you just do a slight rotation the towel is a little looser. And then the next time you see me it is a slight rotation it is going to take at least a hundred to two hundred rotations of this towel to get it back to its floppy flexible self again.

And just in that very short demonstration they now have a frame that chiropractic is not a one of symptomatic fix. Chiropractic is like you own a Ferrari you’d be stupid not to have that thing not serviced regularly, you don’t just get a Ferrari serviced once and say thanks. When people put these fancy cars on these incredible pedestals, but they live inside a fancy car and that fancy car needs more service than the most expensive car on the planet. So they realise that this is what chiropractic is, it is an ongoing servicing so that the deepest symptoms can come out to the surface. And over time and over working both internally and on the physical level you can get yourself back to a flexible state of flow where you expand your horizons, you expand your freedom. Opportunities come your way again you get back in alignment with what is really going on.

quote008Now you may see me once a week you may see me once every two weeks, you may see me once every two weeks, you may see me once every a month. But I want you to think of me as an employee of the company and I now work for you; that’s it. So anytime you require adjustment or assistance in getting to where you want to go just remember what my job description is.

So they don’t think of me like a practitioner or a chiro or a coach or any of those sorts of things, they think of me like I work in their company. And I have a very clear job description and the job description is to make sure that their life is the best life possible. And once that frame is set they don’t think of me as a coach anymore, they think differently and as a result they utilise me the way that they would utilise an employee inside a company.

It just shifts the way people think. And quite often just a small little reframe around how people think can have a huge impact on how they use your services. Because they may have been told the story from me: I got one adjustment I felt fantastic I never went back, well I never went back and saw her because she was in New Zealand and I flew back home.

But that story, if I don’t tell the rest of it, of having ongoing sessions with chiros, that can be misinterpreted and then they come in with that idea. And because you can relieve pain so quickly, the frame could be a one-session frame, which is completely incorrect. Because, you and I both know that one session just gets through the surface, it doesn’t do anything deeper than that.

So one of the things that I would absolutely recommend is that chiros learn that in that very first session, your framing technique must be exquisite. Because once the frame is set by you then all other ideas will bounce off that. So the strongest frame wins the game and if you can put in a strong frame around the way your client about chiropractic services, then no matter what anyone says to them it will just bounce off because they will have a new belief system that governs the way they look at your services.

And the better it is framed the more they will understand how to utilise you to the fullest capacity; which means when the symptoms at the surface level that will go they will still realise now they are going to keep servicing to the next level and the next level.

NW: I think that is a beautiful frame to set up in the first visit. And further down the line how do you link in a healthy body a healthy set of mind, a freedom in the body as you mentioned, with the person living a fully meaningful life. How do you think the chiropractor can add that to their frame?

BH: It depends at what level you can talk to your client. I like to go a little bit scientific with clients. And I like to explain that there is a sea of gazillion neurological connections inside their mind, I like to explain that their mind and body is bathed in neurotransmitters. And I like to explain it with an analogy. I kind of say if you are in Sydney right now and you want to drive to North Sydney you got to drive over the Harbour bridge and sometimes that bridge can be closed because of charged experiences.

So if you had the analogy in the car in Sydney and over North Sydney is everything I ever wanted: relationships, health, finances, the lot. I explain that sometimes in life we have experiences that close the gates to that bridge and those gates, if remain closed, means you get trapped inside Sydney. I get them to understand that every time you stop working on yourself these gates start to close you in and pretty soon you’re living boxed inside Sydney without the ability to drive in any direction and it doesn’t take long before that box starts to affect everything you are doing.

So I explain that as a result of seeing a chiropractor, they are going to keep opening these gates for you. They are going to keep expanding it to the next level and you get to North Sydney, but you want to then go to the northern beaches? Great they will open the gate for that. Then you want to drive to Byron Bay they will open the gate for that; then you want to go to Queensland. So I always explain that life is this continual evolution of expanding your horizons higher and higher and wider and wider. And just seeing how big a sphere you can get to.

But every time you get to a gate it is always beneficial to have someone assist you in unlocking that gate. Because there are people who are experts of that; you should be an expert of living your life but you should go and see experts that are locksmiths and that their job is to open the next gate for you. And you’ll never get to a place where there are no more gates, it is always an expansion so you are either expanding or you are not.

And I like them to think that I’m like a locksmith; that is the concept. So when you come and see me you just tell me when you’ve hit your next boundary and I’m going to help you get to the next phase of that. And people are inspired to be great, they are inspired to do more; they are inspired to want more. So I like them to understand that quite often you will need support getting to that next phase.

And the truth of the matter is if you really look at, I don’t believe human beings will ever reach their full potential unless they are coached and assisted through different types of modalities. I think that is why they are invented. So people can only go so far but the top of the top in any industry have their own private chiro, have their own private mindset consultant or whatever you want to call it.

You go into a lot of the personal development industries and they have all got a chiro behind them. They have all got one it is part of their thing. A lot of the top performers, a lot of the top musicians, a lot of the people in the top of their field they all have a chiro that works for them.

So it is a matter of explaining if you want to keep going to the next level, to the next level, to the next level, it is good to have someone walking beside you who is an expert of opening the door, the next door you get stuck at the next gate.

And that is a frame I like to explain to people, that it is a never-ending process.

So I believe someone should see a chiro forever, because you are always going to hit the next boundary, you are always going to hit that next limitation. And when you hit that, you want a professional that can get you through that. So that is the picture I paint for them. And pretty soon they start to realise that their life is a journey and that they do want to drive as far as they can, and that they want freedom, and if they want all of that then it’s good to have someone next to them. So again it is a framing thing.

NW: Yeah and a very useful analogy that people will get.

So to finish off, speaking of coaching, how would you coach the chiropractic profession itself to increase its credibility and impact on the masses?

BH: I’m just going to be totally straight with this one, I know we are going to rub a few readers up the wrong way. I think it will be good to stop playing the ‘poor me’ card. Just because I do go to a couple of functions and I’m always surprised that the leading comment is always ‘how bad we have got it.’ And it is kind of like, you can’t get enough of what you don’t want. That whole analogy of you just can’t get enough of what you don’t want.

I have been fortunate enough to be mentored by Wayne Dyer since I was sixteen years of age through his books and his CD’s and his live lectures and a whole range of things. And Wayne would often talk about this story of how this person asked if Mother Theresa would lead a march against war, and she said no why would I do that? And the person said why? She said well I’m not going to march against war, but if you would like me to lead a march for peace I would be front of the crowd. And it was just a small distinction but it was a big distinction nonetheless.

So I think if I was to coach the chiropractic industry, I would say let’s just start acting as of today, let us just forget everything that has happened in the past. Because you can’t help but perpetuate the concept if you keep talking about it. I know that there is reality behind what the medical industry is doing, I get that. I know there is reality behind the fact that MDs want to have a crack at your industry I get all that.

But for me I just want to focus on what I actually want to achieve and so I would hold myself as the doctor that I am. I would just move on with it all and that’s the first thing I would do.

The second thing I would do is I’d get on the affirmative, I would start to create content, I would start to put ideas out there, I would start to educate, I would start to hold public talks. Just like anything else you want to market in the world, I would get out onto social media. I would start to educate people, because people are drawn to education in this day and age; it is the information age; so if you want someone’s’ attention or if you want to make an impact you just educate people.

So I would start doing thousands and thousands of short videos of how to sit in a chair correctly brought to you by doctor XYZ who is a chiro. How to get your diet under control brought to you by doctor XYZ who is a chiro. So I would just start to flood the market with that, because other people in other areas aren’t doing that, so you are not hearing from them.

quote009If you want to learn about how to live a great life, chiros will teach you for nothing; if you want to learn anything go online there are always chiros that are ready to educate you. They are happy to give out their content; they are happy to teach you anything you want. They are fully trained and they can definitely teach some cool stuff.

That is what I would be doing.

You’ve got an incredible network. If you all got on the affirmative and started to flood the internet with free content teaching us very simple things. A lot of our students are chiros and they go through a program, called the Expert Accelerator program, where we show how to create videos, and they go away and they just start educating.

So you go on their websites and it is three, four, five-minute videos on everything. I’m not to say it doesn’t exist, but I’m yet to see any medical doctor producing free content like that.

So it is all about the perception of the market and when I’m sitting at home and I’m watching a great video about, as an example how to sit on my chair correctly at work, I’m just going to be grateful for that. I’m going to tell my mates about it. And it doesn’t take long before the market will turn.

So rather than trying to defend your industry, start to elevate it by educating and we really value education now. I find that by educating people, you can shift the way they think.

So you want to start it from the right place. And what doesn’t help is a punter that doesn’t know anything about chiro sitting down at a function and the very first speaker says: let me tell you what we have to fight. Let me tell you why we have got it so bad, let me tell you how crap our industry is and how we have got to really fight hard and why we are on the back foot. That doesn’t help.

But if speakers just got up and forgot that all together and said: let me tell you how fantastic chiro is; let me tell you about a new wave of knowledge that is coming through. Let me teach you some incredible things right now that will transform your life, and I want you to share with all your friends.

Because I have seen both conversations and the former really shocked me as a professional speaker trainer; and I just saw some presentations thinking why you would put this in someone’s head? Why would you keep reinforcing that it is so bad? People are going to vote with their wallets and that is the whole thing.

So at the end of the day if I want to shift your whole industry I will go on a marketing and branding epidemic and I would get every chiro to start flooding the internet with the best free content possible. So that everywhere I look any solution I’m trying to find it is being answered by a chiro. And then within a year or so the whole market place will now get it.

NW: Yeah fantastic and a much more exhilarating message as well.

So just to finish off what one or two sentences would you love to deliver to every chiropractor out there?

quote010BH: The first thing that came into my mind is: live your love.

And the second one that I say to everyone is do whatever it takes to be your own best friend, because if you are best friends with yourself then you really don’t have any problems in life. And you don’t need to defend anything when you become best friend with yourself. So if there are two sentences it would be live your love and do whatever it takes to be your own best friend.

NW: Brilliant. Wow, very important messages and it gets to the heart of it all so thank you for your time. It will be impactful for a lot of chiropractors out there.

BH: Yeah I appreciate it.

Read more about: Difference-Maker

Ben is the Difference-Maker Mentor and Co-founder of Authentic Education. He is exquisite at inspiring people to share their message, make a difference in the world and live abundantly on purpose.

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