How long will it take to develop a successful heath practice?

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What if I were a rock-solid psychic and said ‘It’s going to take you eight years to have a successful practice’. How would you feel? You might be shocked. Upset. You might put your hands on your hips and defy me. Or you might scratch your head while wondering if it’s a sign to re-consider your chosen career. But the reality is, you believe in your modality. You understand its importance. In a way, you feel it chose you, right? Not the other way around. Sometimes a booming practice can be created in six months. Sometimes it takes six years. Or more. The length of time depends on a multitude of things.

Here are some points to consider about success:

 

What does ‘success’ mean to you?
Do you want 15 clients a week or 50? Do you want to be respected as an expert in a particular condition by other reputable health practitioners, as well as clients? Do you want to create a multi-practitioner clinic or have a nice small, flexible clinic at home? Whatever it is, once we’ve hit our target of ‘success’ we start creating a new goal anyway. And that’s okay. We are by nature evolutionary beings. Creative souls. There’s always more to learn and more the develop.

 

How are you successful right now?

Let’s pay homage to what you are doing right – right now. You may want 40 clients per week but you currently only have 12. That’s 12 people who want your help. How you value those 12 people is important. 12 people who might tell another 12 people about what you do. Or not. We don’t know. But valuing those 12 clients and seeing them as symbols of your current success gives you an advantage for achieving your future goal. It also helps you feel a some satisfaction. A sense of success. Right now.

 

What bills do you need to pay?
Baseline time. Success isn’t just about paying the bills but it is a worthy primary business goal. Many of our coaching clients would be happy to have a clinic that covers its own expenses and pays them a reasonable personal income. Sometimes the struggle to meet this goal can force us to diversify our ‘income streams’. This may be creating health products to sell, including digital information products (ebooks, audio meditations, etc.). Or you could get a second job while you build your clinic base. A job that may be a handy resource in connecting with future clients….Sometimes this need to diversity income streams can be a gift in disguise. Look for the gift.

 

What are you actually doing?
Whoever wrote the “Build it and they will come” line in the movie Field of Dreams has a lot to answer for. It has led many a practitioner to happily set up a clinic and wait. And wait. And wait. And then, regretfully, close up the clinic. Tragedy. All that knowledge and ability gone to waste. Some practitioners do more than wait, but the practice still doesn’t take off. Working hard is only part of the story. You have to work smart too. Sure, there may be some experimenting required. Read the signs carefully as you go. Do what you can to make your actions count. Invest some time in a social media strategy, for example, rather than random efforts. You might have a lovely website, but can Google find it? That kind of thing. Which leads us to the next point…

 

Are you prepared to give your saboteur a hug?
Most of us have a self-saboteur. It is that thing inside us that tries to stop us from doing what needs to be done. I recommend you acknowledge this part of yourself. It’s the fearful part that stops you in order to protect you. Your self-saboteur has good intentions. But they are misplaced. This may come out in the form of procrastination or working on things that aren’t really going to get you where you want to go, being a perfectionist to the point that what you are working on never sees the light of day, focusing on what you and other people are doing wrong rather than what you are doing right. Thank your self-saboteur for its concern, give it a chamomile tea and show it the hammock.

 

Are you seduced by the million-dollar wah-wah?

Do those who spruiking get-rich-quick, million-dollar business packages sound dodgy to you? They do to me. BUT the deprivation nugget of our psyche may feel a little seduced by these off-the-shelf-seven-figure income lures. Your focus may not be on becoming a millionaire, but it would be nice… “It’s the journey that’s important” may feel old and, frankly, unhelpful when looking at your Everestian credit card debt or scary mortgage repayment requirements. Can you make more money quickly? Quite possibly. But ask yourself first: At what cost?

 

The holistic approach to success

Developing your practice in part-and-parcel of developing your life. Approach from both the perspective of your personal desires and that your practice. And also that your clients, because it’s all about them in the end, isn’t it? Have clearly articulated and realistic steps to evolve with integrity and pleasure. Yes, there will be frustrations and set-backs. There always are. And plans change. They always do. But if you are clear on what your vision is – how you want to serve – than the set-backs and unplanned changes will be manageable. It will be fine. It always is.

 

 

by Megan Hills, Ethical Practice
20+ years business development & marketing consultant
10+ years helping natural medicine practitioners to greater practice success

 

 

 

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