When I first started out in practice many years ago, as is the case with most, it was a tough going. The first 3 months were long days with little to no patients. One of the few patients I had at the time gave me a flyer for a “Fire Walking Event” she was hosting. Never having done this and wanting to drastically improve my life and my business, I jumped at the chance and signed up immediately.
The event was divided into 2 sections. The first section was board breaking and the second was the walking across fire. I had little interest in Part 1, having broken stacks of boards and bricks with my hands, elbows and head for various black belt tests (don’t ask) so I waited patiently for the Fire Walk.
At around 9pm, we were ready to go and yours truly jumped out first. The path was about 60 feet long and about 6 feet wide. We were to practice our breathing methods previously taught, say a prayer and walk across the fire and red-hot coals. It probably took about 7 seconds to complete but it felt like the longest 60 feet I have ever encountered.
At the end, the feelings of jubilation and elation were virtually indescribable. Now I was ready to take on my life and my business. It would be the turning point of my career which at that point, consisted of about 3 months.
It truly was the turning point, just never in the way I imagined. The fact is, for the next 2 months, despite my certainty and daring fire adventure, I had exactly 2 new patients. Yes, a grand total of 2 which happened to equal the number of blisters I had from walking across the fire.
It took a bit but I realize that the Fire Walking/Board Breaking day was just one of the ways I used to avoid doing the real work. Fire walking would not get me new patients. Networking would. Lecturing, teaching, handing out flyers, volunteering at natural health events and continuing to develop my skills was the real work.
By the end of the year, I had one of the busiest Natural Medicine practice in South Florida. It happened from preparing creative radio and TV shows, talking to doctors, chiropractors and health store owners , doing some innovative marketing and adding to my ever-growing toolkit of treatment modalities. Of course, I would make sure every patient was treated as if he or she was the King or Queen.
I never returned to Fire Walking or any of its “relatives.” It may work for some. For me, it was an entertaining distraction from the often difficult, sometimes tedious, always challenging work.
Today, I see that approach frequently. It may not be with fire walking or board breaking but it is with iPhones, Wii and other electronic devices, TV and a slew of excuses. You know the ones -“I don’t have the time” or “Money is a little tight now” or 100s of others spoken all too regularly. Whether they are legitimate obstacles or habitual excuses make no difference. Somewhere, someone out there has greater obstacles and challenges and is managing to take the class, make the trip, run the race, start the successful business or anything else on the Dream Board.
Do the work. Take your life on. You will find that your past failures and “mis-adventerous” fire walks will be written into the day that you launched the boat from the safe harbors into the unknown, only to find that greatness was your destiny.