Volunteering In Rural Kenya

Ten Things About Volunteering At A Hospital In Rural Kenya You Should Know Before You Go And How To Become Involved

 

1.  You’ll realize you’re a doctor.

Treated as an equal by your medical peers around you, doing hospital rounds every morning, and giving your feedback on patient cases will quickly have you realizing how much you know and can contribute in a Western medical environment.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2.  There may or may not be running water.

What you think might be essential at a hospital is not the case in Kenya. Most days of the week at noon the water would shut off and not come back on again. I never learned why that happened, but where there is no water, there certainly is no soap.

 

 

3.  The doctors, nurses, and medical staff are sharp.

They aren’t lacking in intelligence, they’re just lacking in educational opportunities. Bring your knowledge, share your knowledge, and help them grow.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4.  It’s not uncommon to open up a drawer and find it full of dead bugs.

Sanitation levels are entirely different then what you might be use to. Your need to be able to adapt to this environment is crucial to being involved with this work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5.  The patients are incredibly grateful for your treatments.

It’s a different type of thanks one receives in a setting where good medical care isn’t taken for granted, doctors are few and far between, and death is a common occurrence.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6.  Your meals will be repetitive and your digestion could take a beating.

Rice, flat bread, cornmeal with water, lentils, sometimes vegetables, or meat. Repeat, repeat, repeat. I did my best to avoid any raw food as an attempt to steer clear of bacteria. However, my plan backfired. I was left with a pretty unpleasant case of traveler’s diarrhea for a good majority of the time I was there, which even kept me home from the hospital one day. Be prepared for this to happen and always take care of your health first.

That’s cornmeal in the picture, not cake!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7.  Don’t forget you’re in a hospital.

Sometimes patients are vomiting behind you as you’re treating someone else, there’s open wounds oozing with infection you’re needling around, HIV is common here, and there are sick feverish patients you’re treating with undiagnosed causes. On the flip side you’re treating cases you wouldn’t treat everyday and witnessing the power of Eastern medicine in it full glory.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8.  The trip to and from the hospital each day is no stroll in the park.

Long, hot, bumpy and 30-45 minutes each way every day. Make sure you’ve used the bathroom before you leave, as well as bring some water. As long as the drive was it was still one of my favorite parts to the day, as all the little ones stared, smiled, waved and yelled at me, “Mzungu!” the Swahili nickname for white person.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9.  The beauty is unmatchable.

Having visited during the rainy season, everything was lush and growing. Stunning rolling hillsides, epic sunsets, and the greenest of green I’ve ever seen. Top that off with the kindest, most welcoming, fully present people and you’ve stumbled into a little slice of healing the world heaven.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10.  If you can survive all of that your heart will bust wide open, fill with compassion, and a new depth of gratitude will be acquired from one of the best experiences of your life. Please visit www.globaloutreachdoctors.org to apply for a volunteer position or make a donation, they are a registered 501(c)(3) and up to great work out in the world!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Part Three: 3 Ways Senior Acupuncturists Are Wrong About Building A Successful Practice

Thank you so much for sharing your struggles and dreams in the comments and emails from our last article.

When we open up and share this with each other, we all start to feel a little less isolated and alone. We realize we all have the same dreams and the same challenges, which brings our community closer in camaraderie.

It makes me excited to see everyone participating and sharing to get one step closer to creating your work life dream life! Woohoo!!

Get excited!

You can create and build whatever life you can dream up. You can have a successful practice and be a happy acupuncturist once you learn to think in innovative radical ways and not get stuck in the old school senior practitioner rut.

I’m not saying anything is wrong with old school! If that is your dream life and it’s working for you then that’s awesome! I’m just here to open your minds a bit and give you a glimpse of what could be.

Which. Is. ANYTHING!

After barely scraping by in my first two years as an acupuncturist and almost giving up, I applied some unconventional strategies and my practice took off!

I’ve made 6-figures ever since, I never worry about money, I travel the world extensively (because this is my dream practice!), and I always have a full schedule, even upon returning from a long trip.

Work life dream life!

Another acupuncturist who learned and applied these unconventional strategies is Judith Miller of ommacupuncture.com.

Judith says, “Alyssa’s program instantly had me working towards my goals by building confidence, positivity and purpose. Within three months I transformed my business and went from not being able to pay bill to having enough to pay bills, splurge a little bit and put away into savings! My patient numbers went from 5 patients in a week, to most recently averaging 25-30 patients in a week! Thank you Alyssa for forming this wonderful community!”

Helping acupuncturists thrive and heal the world is THE BEST.

It’s a blessing to be able to help!

Today I’m going to teach you one of the best but most misunderstood and underutilized ways to build a successful practice – taking regular vacations.

This strategy is my baby, as you may have already caught on to the fact that I am travel obsessed!

Last year I went to Tulum, London, Istanbul, Portugal, Barcelona and Paris. This year I’ve gone to Italy, Paris, Morocco and currently in Kenya this week!

Oh travel how I love you!

And even if you’re not a travel fan, taking regular vacations is still going to be one of your best ways to build your practice. Whether you take the time off to go visit family, extended time around the holidays, to spend extra time with your kids, or just to relax at home, being out of the office for regular periods of time is necessary.

Let’s get into the whys and the hows.

First thing first – Energy.

Energy is a real thing that gets exchanged in practice between you and your patients.

Vacations are necessary to take an energetic break and clear your patients’ energies out of your system.

When you don’t take this time, you’ll experience an energetic backup. You probably won’t even realize you’re experiencing this because it often feels like resentment, anxiety, and burnout coming on. Acupuncturists will mistake these feelings for other reasons in their lives or mistakenly think they’ve made the wrong career choice.

Taking a break from the office is critical to cleanse your mind, body, and spirit.

Put down those needles and back away slowly! 😉

Merely taking time away from treating patients generally does the trick to release the energetic backup but you can always go the extra mile by spending time in nature, meditating morning and night, doing breath work such as Kundalini, and/or doing whatever it is with whomever it is that makes you laugh the most.

These are all great ways to release and reset.

When an acupuncturist decides to take a vacation from their practice the number one emotion that comes up big time is guilt.

I understand completely, because it took me a long while to work through this one!

I thought I was being selfish, my patients would be upset with me, leave my services, fall ill, and on and on and on.

Not to mention you will have the occasional patient that does drop a guilt bomb on you when you tell them you’re taking a break. Stay strong!

Because listen, this is your life… your work life dream life as a matter of fact. And you can live your dream life however you choose to, while still having a massively successful clinic!

When it comes to dealing with your guilt, I encourage you to put a spin on how you are looking at taking time off and understand that taking a vacation will actually help your patients, not harm them.

You will come back to them fresh, energized, clear, and loving. And how’s that sound for helping to heal your patients versus resentful, anxious, exhausted, and burnt-out?

If you guilt yourself into staying in clinic for your patients you are putting their needs ahead of yours. This is a recipe for disaster and never ends well. Your needs must always come first to you. We all know we can’t serve our patients the best when we are running on empty (or full in this case of your patients’ energies!)

One of the main misunderstandings about taking time off is what will happen to your patients.

It’s not what you think! Here’s what I mean…

When I first started traveling for 1-2 weeks, the way I handled it is to let my patients know a few weeks beforehand when I’d be gone in order to prepare them.   I’d provide them the name of a local acupuncturist friend of mine to go to if they wanted a treatment when I was gone. On their last appointment with me before my trip I’d schedule their follow up exactly the same as I’d schedule them any other day but for 1-2 weeks out whenever I would be returning to office.

This is a great way to begin taking vacations because it works well and you’ll always come back to a full schedule. Patients love hearing about your travel stories when you return so they’re excited to get in to see you again.

For those of you worried about leaving your regular patients without treatment, worry no more! It’s actually really good to have your regular patients take a 1 or 2 week break from acupuncture occasionally because often it’s not until they don’t have a treatment for a short period of time that they realize how much it actually does help them.

I literally had a patient tell me upon my return once, “I didn’t realize how much this helped my stress until I didn’t have it while you were gone. Acupuncture is so helpful!”

Score and score!

Not only does your patient’s appreciation of you increase, so does your value in their eyes. Not only will this create mega loyal patients, this can actually lead to more referrals coming your way!

Yes! Did you get that? Taking vacations can actually increase your business!

What?! WOOHOO!!

This just gets better and better, right?!

One side note: If a new patient contacts me right before a trip I let them know they got in contact with me right before I’m about to be out of office for a period. I then suggest that we can either get them in for their first appointment and do follow ups when I return, or we can hold off until I’m back and start our first appointment then. Either way the key here is to get them scheduled on your books.

Once I began traveling for 3-6 weeks at a time I brought an acupuncturist into my office to take care of my patients while I was away.

And little did I know at the time but I made an amazing discovery!

For anyone that follows my work you know I’m on a mission to mainstream Eastern medicine by helping acupuncturists with the success of their practices.

This discovery is a way to revolutionize helping new practitioners AND more established ones. Massive symbiosis!

As we learned, it is absolutely necessary for acupuncturists to take vacations for the success of their practices, but they often don’t understand how to responsibly leave their patients mid-treatment plan.

This is the solution.

I highly encourage you to rent out your treatment room during the times you are not using it to an acupuncturist just starting out.

Not only will they have a great spot to build their practice out of, but you’ll have an acupuncturist you trust at your access anytime to take care of your patients when you travel (not to mention a reduction in your rent)!

You get to take your vacation, release backed up energy, reset, and come back refreshed, your patients are well taken care of while you’re gone, plus a new acupuncture practitioner gets priceless experience running a full time practice which boosts their confidence through the roof!

It’s win win win win win!

This is how we create community among acupuncturists. Help each other out.

Isabelle is a new practitioner I brought into my office for this exact reason. She has been taking care of my patients while I’m off on my 6 weeks adventure trip.

It’s truly been the best for both of us.

Isabelle wanted to share these thoughts with you, “I’m so grateful for the opportunity Alyssa has given me while she is on vacation. It has helped me with my own confidence level, experience, skill and speed. It also has given me a rare chance to see what the future holds and that is priceless.”

How awesome is that, right?!

When seeking an acupuncturist for your office something you want to be aware of is their energetic presence. You’ll never find another you, but you will find someone who is on the same wave-length. This is important for the comfort of your patients. If you’re a chatty Cathy and then you bring in a Debbie downer welllll … that’s just not really going to work and your patients most likely won’t go to them for treatment.

Surprisingly it can be challenging to find a newbie acupuncturist seeking a spot to grow their practice. It’s good to place ads in acupuncture school alumni newsletters, post on social media, and ask fellow colleagues if they know of anyone.

Once you’ve found your newbie acupuncturist twinsie, your next step before taking time off is to bring them into the office with you the last 1-2 weeks before you go so they can meet all of your patients while you are still there.

I brought Isabelle into the treatment room with me (of course with the approval of my patients first) so everyone could become familiar with each other. My patients really appreciated this.

Logistics alert!

Before you do this be sure to have each patient sign a HIPPA Privacy Authorization Form giving approval for the two of you to share their chart. Muy important.  Click here to download that form!

If a patient (new or old) contacts me while I’m traveling for treatment I’ll tell them, “I’m currently out of the office but have an amazing acupuncturist taking care of my patients in the office while I’m gone. Would you like to book a treatment with her? She’ll take great care of you.”

Notice what I did here?

Enthusiasm. The same way I teach you to “sell” acupuncture to people in everyday conversations is the same way you’re going to “sell” your acupuncture substitute to your patients. And I’m talking about genuine enthusiasm here. This shouldn’t feel forced like you’re trying to sell a junky used car to a sweet old lady 😉

Another thing I’ll often say to my patients to “sell” my sub is that it’s fun to get treated by someone else sometimes to experience their energy and acupuncture style.

It’s very flattering how loyal your patients are to you, but when you speak with great confidence in your acupuncture substitute, they trust your guidance and will often come in for treatment.

Which is exactly what you want to happen because remember that big old slab of guilt pie?!

If you take extended time off but none of your patients come in for treatment while you’re gone, you’re going to be eating that guilt slab every day for breakfast on your “relaxing” time off. Not exactly the effect we’re going for here.

Time for the million dollar question!

What is Isabelle getting paid?

Here’s what I suggest for your acupuncture subs and what I do with mine – For everyone of my patients she treats I get 30% of the cash price and she gets 70%. If any new patients come into the office through me while I’m gone then we split the first appointment 50/50 and moving forward from there Isabelle gets 100%.

I want Isabelle to make the majority of the money, but it’s an awesome perk for me to make a bit of money too! Always go for the win/win in life!

One other point I want to hit on concerning this strategy for taking vacations is the necessity for you to trust your acupuncture substitute. I even encourage you to literally say the words to them, “I trust you to take great care of everyone.”

You need to let go (remember – drop the needles and back away slowly! 😉 ) and let them treat your patients however they see fit. If you micro-manage your acupuncture sub this creates an energy of distrust and superiority in the office. Not exactly the happy healing vibe you were going for.

So let go. Relax. Take a break. It will be okay.

Are you starting to see how many unconventional and uncommon ways there are for building your dream practice?

When you learn and apply these cutting edge new techniques you will get more appointments, have financial freedom, help more patients, build the practice of your dreams, feel less stressed, travel the world, support your family, work to mainstream Eastern medicine, expand your practice, or however your dream practice life looks for you.

You will have the freedom to have whatever you desire!

Now I’m not saying you can’t create this with the senior practitioner ways too.

There’s no “wrong” way to build a practice if it works for you.

But there are radical new ways that I’ve taught hundreds of acupuncturists all around the world, and they’ve achieved massive success and happiness with these strategies!

If you’re interested in finding out more innovative practice building strategies to create your work life dream life, I’ve got great news for you!

I’m opening up 7 new spots for one-on-one coaching to help you laser focus in on what you need to do to create your successful dream practice!

Whatever you want, let’s build it together.

One-on-one coaching with me is an accountability accelerator where we hit the ground running to take your practice from wherever it is now to implementing radical new systems, ways of thinking, and techniques so you can have the practice, income, and life you’ve always dreamed of.

This coaching is open to action-takers who are SERIOUS about growing a practice, healing the world, and mainstreaming Eastern medicine, rather than just talking about it, and who are ready to be hyper-focused and committed to actually build the practice of their dreams.

I’ve outlined the valuable information, knowledge and support this coaching offers, now here’s the specifics of how you will access it all!

  • Commitment is my jam. You must be committed to your growth, your action, and your success. This generally takes 6 months time working together, which is a requirement for being accepted.
  • Every other week we get on a call for 30-45 minutes. Here we attack your blocks, your stories, get clear on your dreams, create a step-by-step plan of action, and assignments for you to complete in the next week.
  • On our off-call weeks we continue to stay accountable through email check-ins. Accountability is key to success and we are in contact every week! Don’t worry, you’ll love me! 😉
  • We have a lot of fun. The only point of life is to have fun and be happy, including during coaching time. Who doesn’t want to be a happy acupuncturist, right?!
  • Your financial investment is $379 per month for 6 months and coaching beyond this period would be on a month-to-month basis for the same fee. I want to keep this as affordable as possible for everyone, remember the goal is always win/win/win/win!

To be accepted as a coaching client first you need to FILL OUT THE APPLICATION FOUND HERE. In step two we’ll need to hop on a 30-minute introductory coaching call to chat it up a bit before you’re in. I can’t work with everyone because there’s only one of me! Insider’s tip: if you want to be accepted, I can’t resist a motivated, excited to heal the world, action taking acupuncturist!

You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. If anything you’ll at least score a free 30-minute coaching call with me!  Fill out the application HERE now, let’s build your dream practice together this year, and I’ll be in touch shortly! Teamwork makes the dream work!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LOL! 😀 😉 😀

 

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Part Two: 3 Ways Senior Acupuncturists Are Wrong About Building A Successful Practice


Thank you so much for your comments about the practice building myths floating around in the acupuncture community. Time to squash ‘em!

You truly can create, build, and be whatever you want, this is YOUR LIFE. Don’t get caught up in someone else’s old school ways of thinking. Think radically to live a radical acupuncture dream life!

In our last article we covered how referring out patients can actually get more patients in your office and went over why it’s a hot mess that creates slippery slope if you don’t learn how to do this.

When you learn how to let go, how to trust, how to radiate, you are able to fill your practice with full price paying patients, build your dream practice, always have a full schedule, and never stress about money again!

You can have whatever you want, don’t sell yourself short!

Just like me, writing you this email from week 4 of a 6 week travel adventure because the dream practice I created allows me to travel often (I’m obsessed with travel!) and never have to worry about rebuilding my practice when I return. My patients can’t wait to see me again and my schedule is always full.

This is not an exaggeration. I walk my talk.  I’m blessed with living my dream life and running my acupuncture dream practice! Work life dream life!

And it’s not just me!  These radical techniques have now worked for hundreds of acupuncturists all around the globe!

Like Lana Moshkovich, of nirvananaturopathics.com located in Illinois. Lana says,

“I started practicing in December 2014.  I got some appointments, but I didn’t know how to retain my clients.  After taking Building A 6-Figure Acupuncture training course it became really clear what I needed to do and say to my new and established clients.  Just two months later in February 2015, I need more space and I’m already moving into a new office with reception area, 2 exam rooms and herbal room- all to myself. Excited!!!”

Or Mona Zekri, of akupunktur-zekri.com located in Germany! Mona say,

“I profited so much from the modules.  My new practice was a little slow, so I took Alyssa’s course and applied the information.  What happened?? My income TRIPLED in one month!!  But the best thing ever, after 51 years, I am finally doing what I love and what I am good at!  I am happy.”  

I love helping acupuncturist to create their dream practice and making a living doing what they love

Everyone deserves this. YOU deserve this. And with my help you can do this too. More on that later…

Now in the second of three unconventional and uncommon strategies to build a successful practice, that senior acupuncturists get wrong, I’m going to teach you how to build a 6-figure practice all out of a one room.

This is probably one of the top myths acupuncturists get in their heads. They see senior acupuncturists working 3, 4, even 6 rooms an hour! And they think this is what’s necessary to have a successful practice.

Now I’m not knocking it if you want to run that many rooms. I actually have a lot of respect for you because that takes a lot of Qi!

Everyone’s work life dream life is going to look different to them.

But what I am here to do is to disrupt the system. To get you thinking outside the box. To introduce you to cutting edge new ways to build your successful practice that actually work! And work very well.

I gauge how successful an acupuncturist is by how happy they are, not by how many patients they treat in a day.

Whether you’re treating five patients a day or fifty, the amount doesn’t make you any better of an acupuncturist. What matters is how do you define success in your practice and is this what you’ve created?

I want to know – are you happy? Is this the life you always dreamed of living? Is this the type of practice you visualized having? Are you making the amount of money you want to be making? Are you plugged into your happy place?

When you’re plugged into your happy place, living your ultimate work life dream life, not only is it beneficial to you, it’s also beneficial to your patients! A happy acupuncturist has the best patient healing mojo!

So I’m always going to introduce you to a wide range of options for creating your dream practice with one being how to (easily!) build a 6-figure acupuncture practice out of one room.

I use one room in my practice on Tuesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. I use two rooms on Wednesday nights but not to take any more patients, just to do the same amount of patients in a shorter amount of time. This is an option but I’ve personally found I enjoy treating one patient an hour out of one room the best, so that’s what I’ve stuck with in my dream practice.

Creating what you see as the greatest life for you is the key to using these strategies.

Acupuncturists are often unaware of the fact and surprised to hear that you can make 6-figures out of one room without working 24/7.

I’m here to open your mind and shift these limiting beliefs by sharing with you what I’ve done and now hundreds of acupuncturists around the world have done too.

Let’s get right into it!

I’m going to use myself as an example and show you how I easily make 6-figures out of one room.

Again I recommend you fine-tune my methods to suit you and your personality.

You are here to live YOUR dream life however that looks to you.

We’re going to do some reverse engineering!

Start with the end goal in mind, which is making $100,000.

As I’ve shared, I’m obsessed with travel so not being in office all the time is key to my work life dream life. Out of 52 weeks each year, I like to work only 40 of them. This leaves 3 months for travel – yes please, dream living! When I divide $100,000 by 40 weeks, I need to make $2,500 each of those weeks.

Each of those 40 weeks I enjoy having plenty of time for self-care, hobbies, and friends, so I like to work only 4 days a week. When I divide $2,500 by 4 days, I need to make $625 each of those days.

On each of those days I’ll take a maximum of 8 patients. When I divide $625 by 8 it’s $78.13 per patients. Which is WAY TOO LOW for your treatment price! But this is just an example of how easy it is to make 6-figures out of one room while living one’s dream life.

I think all acupuncturists should at least charge $100 for a follow up treatment. I charge $120. So when I divide $625 by $120 that means I need 5 patients a day.

I’ll recap on this awesomeness to be sure you are following me! To make $100,000 a year while working only 40 weeks per year, 4 days per week, out of one room, I need only 5 patients per day at my follow up rate of $120.

Of course some of my patients are new patients which means their rate is $180 and some days I have more than 5 patients (but I max out at 8 per day), so I have grossed between $120,000-$150,000 these past 4 years from my one room practice. All while traveling abundantly AND having plenty of time off each work week.

What makes this so awesome are the limitless possibilities this opens up for you as a one room practitioner happy acupuncturist person!

If you wanted to add more days per week or weeks per year you could make more money, or if you wanted to work one less day and several less weeks per year you could still make 6-figures!

Just use reverse engineering, think of how much you want to work, crunch some numbers, and get creative!

I’ve seen this work countless times for countless happy acupuncturists all around the globe!

One quick tip when creating your dream life – I recommend you are in office at least 3 days per week.

When you begin a new patient you need to treat them at least 2 times in the first 1-2 weeks. If you’re only open 2 days this leaves little room for scheduling. 3 days a week is a sweet spot, especially if one is a night shift, one is a day shift and another is a weekend day. This covers all the bases, gives your patients plenty of options without getting in the way of your work life dream life!

In the third of three unconventional and uncommon strategies that senior acupuncturists get wrong, I’m going to teach you one of the best way to build a successful practice – take regular vacations.

The topic everyone has been waiting for! We’ll dive deep into this one in our final article.

Now what I’d love to hear from you is this:

  1. When you do reverse engineering for your work life dream life what does it look like for you?
  2. How close are you now to having your dream practice and what’s the biggest challenge you have getting there?

Leave a comment right here and be as specific as possible.

This is your chance to connect with the acupuncture community and to connect with me!

So don’t be shy, comment now and I’ll write back! Let’s all help each other be the happiest acupuncturists we can be!  Because as we know, happiness heals.

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Part One: 3 Ways Senior Acupuncturists Are Wrong About Building A Successful Practice

Imagine you’re speaking with an acupuncture mentor who has been in business 25 years and you eagerly ask them what are the secrets to building a successful practice. You’re leaning slightly forward in your seat to be sure you hear them clearly, excited for what you’re about to learn, and they turn to you and say,

“Work hard everyday, if someone can’t afford your prices give them a discount to get them in the door, work out of four rooms so you can give multiple treatments at once, take very little time off and always be available to your patients.”

SAY WHAT?!

Your bright eager eyes start to flicker and dim as you imagine yourself grinding away in your office 6 days a week, 8 hours a day, for the next 25 years as you hear this play in your head…

 Now imagine you’re speaking with a different acupuncture mentor. One who seemingly built a 6-figure practice in no time, always has a packed schedule and a big huge smile on her face because she is loving life.

“What are your secrets to building a successful practice?” you curiously ask.

She looks at you with a glow in her eyes and states, “Take vacations, lots of them, refer out patients that can’t afford your services even if your schedule is not full, and don’t push yourself, only work out of one room, maybe 4 days a week.”

Ok, yes please!

A lot of acupuncture practice building advice that’s out there right now is outdated. What you’re going to learn from me is cutting edge, innovative, radical new techniques that will transform your life from ho hum to heck yeah!

Learn how to build a successful practice by using three uncommon and unconventional strategies in order to create the ultimate work life dream life.

I’ve had a 6-figure practice for the last 4 years now. Did I get there by working my bum off full time 24/7? Quite the contrary in fact. As my practice got busier I started working less and less.

First I went from two rooms down to one room, then I worked less hours, then I worked less days per week, then I worked less weeks per year.

And yes, I still maintained my 6-figure practice but I also maintained my dream life.

Because my dream life involves not being at the office all the time, having plenty of time for self-care, my friends, and my hobbies, having financial freedom, traveling the world and always coming back to a full schedule.

And guess what?

You can live your dream life AND have a 6-figure acupuncture practice that you love.

That’s the life I created and am happily living today!

I’m currently in Italy on week 4 of a 6 week travel adventure trip. My patients are being taken care of by another acupuncturist in my office, which means my patients are getting treatments and I’m making money from my practice even though I’m not there. I have 19 patients already scheduled for the first week I’m back in office. I’m on track to hitting 6-figures this year having already grossed $34,676.69 from my practice in January to March of 2017 and I made this working out of one room four days a week!

Why am I telling you this?

Because nobody ever talks about inspiring, successful stories in the acupuncture community and I’m the acupuncturist who is going to give it to you straight in full and complete transparency!

But I didn’t always have this all figured out.

For the first couple of years in practice I struggled with a work life balance, I needed more patients, I was stressed about money, and I most certainly did not take any time for traveling.

I was waitressing at night, in my practice during the day, not getting enough sleep or having any time off, giving discounts for treatments, and searching for help from other acupuncture colleagues, except no one was living the life I wanted which always left me hopeless and frustrated.

But now, I have my dream practice and I’m living my dream life!

I always have a full schedule, I never stress about money, I have a lot of time for self-care and hobbies, I have plenty of time to travel the world, and my patients are always excited to come back in for treatments when I return.

I am successful and completely free!

And the best part, I finally have complete confidence in being able to create whatever life I want and being able to help you do it too.

Because we’ve all heard something along these lines of the law of attraction, The Secret, the universe is always listening and such, but you have to pause and wonder… is this really true?

I understand! I use to wonder too! But you’ll never wonder again with my help!

What I want to teach you today is one of three unconventional and uncommon strategies to build a successful practice and create your ultimate work life dream life, that senior acupuncturists get wrong – how referring out patients will actually get more patients in your office.

Disclaimer note: Senior acupuncturists aren’t actually “wrong”. (I have nothing but love and respect you!) There are endless ways to build a successful practice, the key is to find whichever one is the right one for you. I’m only using the word wrong for the dramatic effect. 😉 Hey, it caught your attention, right?!

Now on with the training!

When I first started practicing I thought referring a patient out to another practitioner was just plain nuts.

Here’s what I mean…

I thought -why would I give a patient away when I don’t even have a full schedule myself yet? What would make me refer a patient out when I can just discount them to keep them in my practice? I needed the money, right?

Boy was I wrong.

Learning when to refer out was one of the best things I did to get more patients in my door. And now you can do it too.

Ahhhh Alyssa, I think you’re losing it. How is giving away patients going to get me more patients?

I know, sounds backwards right? So let me explain…

One of the main reasons to refer out a patient is because they can’t afford your prices. But one of the first things an acupuncturist thinks they should do in this situation is offer a discount.

I get it! I use to do it too!

But this is the exact opposite land of what you should be doing because what happens in this situation is a slippery slope.

When you begin to fill your practice with patients that are paying a discounted rate, you’ll begin to attract other patients that are seeking that rate too.

Discounted patients will mostly refer other discounted patients who will show up at your office expecting a discounted patient rate!

Yes your practice may begin getting busier but it’s going to be getting busier at this discounted rate.

The secret here is that your practice would have been getting busier at your full fee rate too, if you had just known to refer out these discounted patients in order to leave room for those patients that would pay full fee.

When you don’t refer them out you begin working more and more for a fee that’s not exactly the fee you wanted to charge in the first place. Not only does this mean you won’t be making as much money as you want to make, you also will need to work more hours than you want to work, and resentment starts building.

Once resentment starts building you’re no longer radiating – you’re exhausted, you’re frustrated, you’re stressed and not happy. Unfortunately this just repels your discounted patients, they start to drop off your schedule, and next thing you know you’re barely scrapping by with a handful of patients who are not paying your full fee.

Holy hot mess!

When you learn to refer out those that cannot afford you, you leave your schedule wide open for those that can. Your schedule starts to fill up with full price paying patients. Those patients refer other full price paying patients. You’re working the hours you want, making the money you want, living the life you want, and shining that radiating light that you want too, which only attracts more full paying patients to you!

It can be scary to let go of a patient when your practice isn’t full, but it’s the best thing you can do. Create the space and it will be filled.

In the second of three unconventional and uncommon strategies to build a successful practice, that senior acupuncturists get wrong, I’m going to teach you how to do this out of a one room practice.

Don’t get caught up in the old school ways of building a successful practice! Take the new radical route to get exactly what you want out of life.

But first what I want to hear from you is this…

1. What are some of the tips you hear on how to build a successful practice and what do you think might be a myth or an old school way of thinking?
2. What’s one thing you think you can’t have/do if you have a successful practice?

Leave a comment now and I’ll write back to you! Let’s squash these myths and get some positive and inspirational vibes flowing out there in our acupuncture community!

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