By: Susan Hoy, CA
It was just another trip to the grocery store, just part of an everyday experience. But this trip was to remain in my memory forever. Something was dreadfully different as I drove into the parking lot. Police cars, flashing lights, ambulances, a helicopter circling overhead—and news reporters everywhere. My first thought was that the store had been robbed. I turned to the news station on my radio and heard the words… “murdered in broad daylight in the middle of the grocery store parking lot”… “the suspect was captured a few miles away”… “an apparent random act of violence.” It was a hair-raising experience, bringing with it the harsh reality that violence exists, even in small communities like mine. There was a woman, in the process of loading her groceries, and a random act of violence ended her life.
Over the years, I have been taught to always gain something from every situation, positive or negative. This life is given to us to experience and grow. With every experience, there must be some kind of lesson to learn. Sometimes it’s hard to find a positive, but there is always a lesson.
This extremely negative experience made me acutely aware that life exists from moment to moment. There is no guarantee that we have tomorrow. We must live every moment of every day to the fullest. How many times do we say to ourselves, “I’ll take care of it tomorrow”? How many of us live for the future… next week, next month or next year, and put off happiness today? How many of us, when we hear about acts of violence, just shake our heads and gripe about the state of our world instead of saying, “What can I do about this?” How many of us feel so overwhelmed that there is nothing one person can do?
The truth is that every one of us who work in a Chiropractic office has the opportunity every day to make this world a better place. In fact, every seminar that I give has the theme that you—yes, you—can make a difference in this world, one patient at a time.
We have a steady stream of people who come to us for help. Some of them are in pain, some of them are frustrated, some are angry, some just need to feel cared for. Others just desire to be in a place where people know their name, are happy to see them, and they feel better when they leave. And we in the Chiropractic profession take this for granted.
In truth, there are very few places where people can go and get hands-on, natural healthcare these days. We hear it all the time in statements like, “My doctor just gave me pills and sent me home.”
How many times do we get the satisfaction of seeing the pain, anger, and frustration fade and a smile appear instead? The answer: every day in our office. And we just take it for granted.
What are some ways we can make a difference? They are often so blatantly simple:
A smile, a warm greeting, calling the patient by his name, having genuine concern, a compliment, a hug, an encouraging word, acceptance, a life-giving, pain-relieving, frustration- and anger-reducing adjustment. We offer our patient, at least for the time he or she resides in our office, a solace from the outside world. Is it any wonder they want to hang around our desk? We have patients who are happy to spend time in our office. They come early and stay longer, because we make them feel good. When our patient leaves our office and returns to the world, we literally have made a difference that can travel the world in a day. And you, just little old you, made a difference.
Start with a mission statement for your office, one that serves the world and makes it a better place to live. Here’s an example: Our mission is to create a healing environment where our patients receive personalized care for themselves and their families. We are professionals who exude confidence in our profession. We are patient magnets.
Let’s make it our mission to stamp out random acts of violence and replace them with random acts of kindness. Making a difference, one patient at a time, can be a rewarding, fulfilling experience. The result will be a better world and a thriving practice, too!