Blast from the PAST!!! This blog post is courtesy Robynne Kingswood, former director of The Healing Arts Learning Organization. It is a fabulous article about why it's best to upsell rather than discount our services . These days you can find Robynne and her family in the beautiful province of British Columbia.
Don't degrade! UPSELL your Super Self
We’ve all seen it. It’s as common as a two for one pizza, or last season shoes. Why pay full price? Everyone likes a deal, right? Wag Jag, Groupon. Discounting is cool, everyone is doing it!
Actually, no, so please check that notion at the door. All is not fair in love and discounts.
Unlike pizza or shoes, a human is not discountable. You heard me. Your value, your worth, is not best represented by a reduced bottom line. There lies a dangerous boundary here, one that affects the very core of who we are…our self-esteem.
Additionally, marketing should involve our target audience. No one gets into health care and hones their skills in order to fulfill the needs of “Bargain Shopper” as a profile. Using our skills to symptomatically assist someone with cancer, diabetes, stress, pregnancy…this is how we target clients in fulfilling and meaningful ways; by need, not by pricing discount.
When we draw in a bargain shopper some of the problems can be:
What about clients in need? Those who can’t afford service but need it?
This refers to a clinic policy (in writing) that basically states “upon notification of financial need, assistance will be assessed, on an individual basis, by the practitioner”. Sliding scale empowers a therapist to award a seniors or students discount based on non-discriminatory criteria. Rather than age, it’s based on financial circumstance. A client out of work due to injury, or single parent going through a divorce where income is limited are no less worthy than an undergrad student or senior. Treating everyone equally and fairly is a key stone in professional health care. Age-ism, wither reverse or traditional is not how we write our clinic policies.
Sliding scale is different than promotional discounting in a few ways
We will address some areas to be cautions regarding susceptibility to manipulation in the next article in this series.
With discounting, the end result is often spending a great deal of time treating non clients and not making any money at it.
Therapist Joe worked at a clinic that was all about building business through Wag Jag. The manager prepared the agreement and when all was said and done, the therapist was paid approximately $10 pr treatment. The clinic launched this in November, just a week before the busiest time of year when the therapist would be swamped with regular prices treatments of $85 from open to close each business day. They did not think to put a cap on the sale of these discounts nor redemption date restrictions, and 300 bookings later the therapist was notified of the promotion the clinic was offering, recoiling in horror. Rather than benefit from the most profitable time of year, the therapist could not make rent, working $10 treatments all day long. The incident illustrated some key points about contract rights, control and plain old common sense. He ended up leaving over the incident.
Rather than discount, include “non you” extras. Epsom salts, home stretches, complementary charts, aromatherapy cotton balls, a draw for a relaxation CD once a month or season. Offer signature treatments with a wider skill set, specialty items like chocolate paraffin, or custom blend products increases value. This model, unlike the ½ price appetizers, works in health care.
If you walk away with one message from this article, let it be this:
YOU are not discountable.
You are FABULOUS.
Robynne Kingswood RMT, RRPr, C.Ac
Robynne is a Registered Therapist, Instructor for CCMH and HALO, lecturer for CMTO and author of Marketing Clinical Health Care. This text is being integrated into health care curriculum in public and private colleges throughout Ontario and is available at Know Your Body Best.
They say the only constant in life is change. Yet so many of us avoid change more than anything else in the world. We enjoy our cozy little bubble and are afraid to step out of our comfort zone too much in case we rock the boat and never get back on course. I, fortunately or unfortunately, have never been too afraid of change. My motto usually is: "If it doesn't work, we can always change back." I'm happy that has been the way I live my life because it means that I am accustomed to taking calculated risks. I'm not reckless by any means!! But I'm willing to take chances if there is a possibility it will bring positive change to our life.
A few months ago we made a decision to sell our house. There are many reasons why we decided to do this, and I won't bore you with all the details, but let's just say that after carefully weighing out the pros and cons, my husband and I decided that this was a good decision. It was a stressful few months selling the only home our son knows, one which we have created many memories and have amazing friends close by, but it was even more stressful to find a suitable home to start the next part of our journey. We have spent the last two weeks moving into that new home and I have to say, it all worked out amazing as our temporary new location. My office space is a beautiful loft and I have so many ideas for it!! Already based on the new layout we have had more opportunity to bond as a family and I am so grateful.
While moving, I had a chance to go through many papers, files and boxes and I am astounded beyond belief when reflecting back on the past 10 years since I achieved certification, which is the motivation behind this post!! I found my planner/calendar from 2007 when I was first building my business as a Reflexologist. I am so proud of myself for consistently building my clinical practice each week. For getting out into the community and making connections. All while balancing the joy of being a new mom and caring for my new born son. Being a Mom was beyond important to me but I never wanted to just be a stay at home mom. I wanted to be a role model and contribute to our family financially as well. Having a career that allowed me to control my own schedule was - and still is - amazing!!
As a person, a practitioner, a mom and a business a lot has changed these last 10 years and reflecting as I packed and unpacked reminded me just how much. I am so excited for the positive changes we have made recently and I can't wait to share some of the plans for the future of Soul Treatments Wellness.
But for now, I want to leave you with this. If you are thinking about making changes in your life - STOP THINKING and start acting!! Only when you take action will you know if the things you are thinking about will be positive or negative. And because the only constant in life is change, you can always change back if you don't like the changes you make. But my guess is, you will like them!!
I look forward to helping you in the future!!
Tanya Hill ~ Owner, Soul Treatments Wellness Ltd.
Head office now located on Marcy Cres. in Cambridge.
Where do I even begin?
I still can't believe that I have been a Reflexologist for 10 years. For a quarter of my life now I have been a Mom, a Reflexologist and an Educator. I live a dream life! One that provides me with the flexibility of my own schedule so that I can spend quality time with my family, one that provides me with a sense of purpose and meaning as I help others with their wellness goals, one that allows me the opportunity to Educate ~ Empower ~ Inspire others regularly. And it all started because one day I stared at a stick that had a pink plus sign.
Later this year my son will turn 11 years old. From the moment I knew I was pregnant he has been the motivation behind pursuing more, dreaming more and inspiring to be more. And this last year has brought us so many changes personally and professionally! I have zero regrets and a few highlights to share from this 10 year journey.
Before starting to write this I looked back on a previous blog post - My Journey to Today - written in July 2012. That was 5 years into this incredible journey. At the time I wrote that, I could hardly believe it had
Yesterday when I dropped my son off at his hockey practice I had to head over to Sport Check and pick up a new water bottle for him. One of the cashier stations was closed so needless to say the one that was open had quite a line-up. I wasn't in a big hurry so even though I was making a tiny purchase I had no issues waiting in line. As I got closer to the front of the line, I could hear the young girl behind the cash register making conversation with the customers. Not your normal small talk about the weather, but actually chatting away like they were old friends. The customer right in front of me had 2 small children. 2 small BUSY children who had been trying to run off every chance they could get while Mom was in line. The cashier engaged the kids in the conversation too! Asking them questions about the purchases and what they would use them for. Really working hard to involve them. I know that Mom must have appreciated the efforts. And this young girl was NICE! Super happy and upbeat, and not in a superficial way at all. You could tell this was who she was. She genuinely liked people, meeting them and loving her work. When it was my turn she pointed out my shirt and we started a great conversation about her Father and my Husband being die hard Red Wings fans and how neither one of us could tell you anything about the team despite their influence on us (HAHA, sorry to any hockey and/or Red Wings fans out there!)
As a parent, the struggle to protect our children and yet also let them be free to be who they are is a delicate balance. We want to teach, inspire and empower. But at the same time we don't want them to be sad, hurt or disappointed.
We are so proud of our son this week because he made the hockey team!! He made the team he wanted to make and will be playing with many of his friends this coming season. But what is most important is that he tried hard to earn the spot on the team. He believed in himself (even when we doubted and tried to protect) and never gave into the fear that he might not make it. He was determined and gave it 100% every time he went out. So whether he made the team or didn't, we would have been proud. But the lesson is about more than just his determination and hard work. It's about believing in yourself and the power that has over how we act. When you never give in to the "what if's" and always stay focused on achieving your goals, you will be successful!!
Have a listen as I tell you my son's story of SUCCESS in the video below.
Are you working toward something? Can I help? I have been working with people to help them grow their own meaningful career in health care for more than 8 years now!! At Soul Treatments Wellness we offer Reflexology Training across Canada, but also a Grow your Business online course. Our supportive, comfortable learning environment is what sets us apart from others and I would love the chance to tell you more. Contact me today if you would like to chat about your dreams and how to make them become a reality.
I remember the day like it was yesterday! The day I saw the fork in my road of life ahead of me (I know, it sounds so cliche, but it's true!!)
I had been working as a Reflexologist for a few years on the side of my full time job. Building a regular base and devoting as much time as I could to becoming a face in the community (around being the mom to a busy pre-schooler). A few years previous when I had returned to my full time job after maternity leave, I had made plans with my employer to gradually transition to part time over a few years. Working part time would allow me to take the next step in my business to continue growing it, while not leaving us in a scary position financially. I was already working 4 days a week and was ready to make the transition to the promised 3 days a week because my son was going to be heading to JK that September. However, my employer had different plans. They no longer felt they could keep their promise to me moving to a 3 day per week schedule.
I was crushed :(
I am happy to announce that Darcel Woytowich has completed all the requirements necessary to gain the title of Provincial Representative in Saskatchewan and begin teaching our Reflexology training program on her own!
It has been quite the journey for Darcel! From learning the modality, getting married, dealing with injury within her family and having a baby to now being an instructor! Throughout her training experience Darcel has blown away the personal obstacles that could have set her back. She would view a situation, accept that she could not change many situations but she could change her attitude regarding it and ultimately discover a way around those potential obstacles. This is a true measure of success and determination and makes me so proud to have her on our team inspiring others.
Please join me in sending a huge warm welcome to Darcel!
The most important job I will ever perform in my lifetime is the one I didn't apply for. But it's the one I work the hardest at and value the most. It is the one I want to be remembered for, but only by my son because other people's opinions of my choices are of no value to me.
Can anyone relate to the picture above? The memory of "who I was before I became a mom" moments?
I used to be an "on-time" person.
I used to have a wardrobe of "business-casual" attire.
I used to have time to read a romance novel.
I used to feel accomplished at the end of the work day.
I used to come home after that work day to a fairly tidy house.
I used to spend my weekends sleeping in and hanging out with friends.
I am occasionally (ok, usually) late.
I wear yoga pants and leggings about 90% of the time.
I have time to help my son learn to read.
I rarely feel like I have accomplished anything at the end of the day, and wake up each day knowing I will learn yet another new thing.
I have a very "lived in" looking house....all...the...time.
I spend my weekends in an arena or on a field hanging out with people who have become friends through our child's activities.
And I wouldn't have it any other way.
Because I know that the years I have been putting into this most important job of my life will be the most successful ever. This isn't a debate about working mom vs stay at home mom. I know some outstanding working moms and I marvel at their abilities every day. Plus, in reality I am a working stay at home mom. My business allows me to have flexible hours that allow me to make my top priority my son. The pay is less, but the rewards are greater! But for me, being a mom is my work for now.
I know that I could head back into the corporate world again in a heartbeat. I know that because I have tested it when I have had moments of weakness, thinking I must be the worst mom ever because I seem to be "failing" at every corner. My outstanding work performance in the past still speaks volumes today and since I didn't burn bridges, past employers still ask about me and wonder if I'm job searching. And one day maybe I will be. Although the job of mom never expires, I know that as the years go by he will need me less and less. But my point is that right now, despite feeling like a failure more often than I feel like a success, when I look at the big picture, I can see that our choice for me to be a work from home mom has been a success. And these next few years are actually the most important ones where he will be faced with many difficult decisions. I want to be the person he turns to when making those decisions. I want to be the larger influence on those decisions vs his peers.
In this world where the role of Mom is undervalued, I know that people wonder why I haven't decided to return to the "normal" working world. Financially it would be the smart move. Let me assure you that its not because I like sitting at home coming up with creative ways to help my son learn his times tables or to write more neatly. It's not because I love spending my winter evenings in cold arenas. It IS because the years are short. I am halfway through the most important job of my life. I'm in the home stretch, but the most challenging time. The "normal" working world will always be there. My son might not be. So be patient with me as I continue to work hard, even if it's not in a job that you find valuable. Because to me and my family, it is the one that counts the most.
I will continue to wear my Mom attire proudly. It might mean I am late more than on-time. It might mean I only dress up occasionally. It might mean I am too tired for regular girls nights (I prefer girls lunches or evenings so I can still get some sleep!). It might mean I can't afford the latest fashions.
But it means we are all happy and healthy, so anything I have "given up" is worth it due to all I have gained!
As an alternative health care practitioner, I would love to tell you that my family ~never~ gets sick. I would love even more to tell you that I have a secret to how you can ~never~ get sick.
But the truth is, we all get sick sometimes. Even if we do everything "right", we still might sometimes come down with something.
The positive note of this blog that I can share with you is this: my family ~rarely~ gets sick!!!! Despite me being an alternative health care practitioner and being surrounded by people who are feeling unwell often! And it is the secrets of how we have managed to make that happen that I am going to share.
How my family remains healthy more often and recovers from illness faster
1. Rest is essential, especially when you feel like you need it most.
Ignoring the fact that your body needs rest is how most people become susceptible to common illnesses. When we rest, we allow our body to restore and repair. Although we all have obligations we cannot back out of (believe me, we are a busy family too!), there is no reason to stay up until your "normal" time just because that is your routine. If you are tired, go to sleep. If you can say no to an obligation, do so. And along this note, don't overbook yourself all the time so that you are unable to take advantage of down time when it's available to you. If you are able to take advantage of a break from work to just rest, do so. When your body is communicating that it is tired, listen and do what you can to give it the rest it needs.
2. Stay hydrated.
When you drink plenty of fluids throughout the day, your body is able to eliminate waste and toxins efficiently. Therefore there isn't a back up of these causing you to stay sick longer.
3. Put lemon in your water.
While you are hydrating, lemon is a great flavor additive to your water. It helps to boost your immunity because it is high in vitamin C and due to the pectin fibre, it supports your digestive system to help flush toxins from your body. Here is a great article discussing 16 great health benefits of lemon water (click Here).
For many years I have been a natural cleanser. You can clean your home safely and naturally with common ingredients without impacting your endocrine system with fancy anti-bacterial commercial products. I clean with vinegar, lemon, baking soda and include some essential oils now (see next point) and these work well to keep our home free of most viruses.
5. Essential oils
Essential oils have been getting a back rap lately because they are being over-used by people not educating themselves on the possible dangers of irresponsibly using them. That doesn't mean that the essential oils themselves are bad, but the user must understand essential oils, while natural, are very powerful and should be used with care. I have done the work and research to educate myself. My favorite oil when it comes to helping clean my home is tea tree oil (anti-viral, anti-bacterial). For periodic diffusing (not ongoing, just in bursts) eucalyptus (helps with congestion and is also a disinfectant) or cinnamon (helps clear bacteria in the air and is anti-viral). I do not recommend taking essential oils internally. Although I know there is research stating otherwise. This is just my personal practice with their use.
Come on, you knew it was going to be in here :) One of the best benefits of reflexology is how it helps break up and clear out toxins from the body. It also works to restore the body to balance which can help boost immunity. So when a family member is feeling a bit under the weather, one of my first go-to's is a treatment. I usually use coconut oil and an essential oil blend to help boost immunity.
So yes, even my family gets sick! My son had the flu for 19 hours (the 2am, "Mom, I feel great, can I play?" wasn't fun), my husband had a "man-cold" for a few days and when we went away I also had cold symptoms for a few days. While not fun, none of it was severe. After hearing from so many others about how their family was sick for days on end, I was prompted to write this and share our tips for recovering quick from family illnesses.
I know there are many natural tips out there that other families use. Share with me what your family does to increase immunity and recover faster when illness does happen. I can't wait to hear!
I remember it well. My estimated due date was December 18. The pressure that builds when you have a late December birth looming. The seduction of induction (my care provider and I started discussing it when I was 6 months along). The stress of not wanting to still be pregnant in the NEXT year. The fear of birthing when hospital staff might have their thoughts on holiday parties and family gatherings. Actually, who am I kidding. The stress of US missing holiday parties and family gatherings! I had always said I didn't want to have a baby in December and yet there I was 9 months pregnant in the busiest month of the year.
I am here today to share some of what go me through the pressure to birth way back in 2006, to help you prepare your body for birth (control what you can, release everything else) and to trust that it will all work out.
Many moms to be come to me in this month hoping that Reflexology can induce their labour. It can't. And please don't let anyone tell you that it - or any other technique - can. Natural means to "induce" labour are only designed to help your body prepare for labour. They are wonderful and *should* be used, but don't kid yourself that they *will* induce. Even medical means to induce labour are not as effective if your body and baby are not ready, thus leading to difficult and possibly surgical births. But this doesn't mean that all hope is lost!
Birth is an extensive process. And to be the most positive experience possible we should be using the 9 months of pregnancy to train for it. Just like you wouldn't wake up the morning of a marathon and decide to run in it without preparing first, you shouldn't wake up in the last weeks of pregnancy and decide that now is the time for you to prepare for your birth. Natural methods of preparing your body for birth - including Reflexology (by a trained professional) - should be done throughout pregnancy and regularly/consistently in the 3rd trimester. This is the training process. Working with your body to gently prepare it for the big day. You can read more about the many ways to naturally prepare for birth in my other blog post by clicking here.
So back in 2006 I spent my final month of pregnancy doing just that. Mentally preparing for the holiday time by getting holiday tasks like shopping and wrapping out of the way so I wouldn't be stressed during the birth and postpartum that I forgot something. This meant I was always on the move. Walking around shopping, sitting upright. Baking, cooking. Anything to keep my body working and preparing.
Warming up on those cold December days by drinking my red raspberry tea to strengthen my uterus. Booking my appointments for Reflexology well in advance because it shouldn't be an after thought of something to do (more about the benefits of reflexology in a minute). But also other appointments like my hair or nails. Not making promises we couldn't keep. This was HUGE. We didn't know when our baby was born so why commit to attending dinners or parties? If we could be there, bonus. If we couldn't, I think we have the best excuse possible for why we aren't! Don't spend each day watching the calendar or clock. Your baby will be born on the day it is to be born. Whatever day that is, don't worry about it. Trust that your baby and your body knows what is best. You can control how you prepare for that birthing day. You cannot control what day it will be unless you decide to induce medically. So let it go. Believe me it will be good training for later in parenting life when you will want to "not sweat the small stuff".
As much as you might worry that you are the cause of care providers "missing out", trust me they signed up for this. They know that they might be working on specific holidays and are totally fine with it. And if you have done your preparations ahead of time, hopefully you will have a positive, short birthing experience and make their day even brighter :)
So if I'm spending this blog helping you understand why you shouldn't stress about the day your baby is born, why the emphasis on Reflexology?
The benefits of Reflexology are huge, but especially for the pregnant woman in her final weeks of pregnancy. I don't just shout from the roof-tops about Maternity Reflexology for those birthing in late December, I shout about them ALL THE TIME.
Have a look at my top 3 reason why you should be using Reflexology to help you prepare for birth - anytime of the year!
1. Sleep. You wouldn't wake up the morning of a marathon not having slept properly the night before, so why would you want to go into birth with little sleep? One of the greatest benefits of Reflexology is that it helps you get a better quality of sleep. I can't make your baby stop pressing on your bladder making you wake to go pee every few hours (sorry, lol!!), but I can make the hours that you do sleep be quality hours. And the reflexology can perhaps help you to have a nap during the day to catch up on whatever you didn't get through the night.
2. Improved digestion. Have you ever looked at a picture of the anatomy of a pregnant woman? (see below). Those internal organs all get smushed together making it more difficult for them to function at their best. Reflexology, because it works with the body in a different way through the reflex points, can naturally help stimulate these organs to work better. And an empty bladder and empty intestine makes more room for baby to descent into the pelvis, placing more pressure on the cervix for dilation and effacement.
3. Decrease of stress and anxiety. Being at the end of your pregnancy and thinking about the upcoming birth amounts to enough stress, let alone having the end of your pregnancy be in December. Reflexology is known to have a great impact on decreasing the stress/tension that gets built up in the body. As much as I talk about the importance of movement in preparing your body for labour, it is also important to balance that with rest for your body. Stopping the hectic times by receiving a Reflexology treatment and allowing your mind and body a chance to rest is important. You will walk away having a more relaxed outlook on life. Your feet will be less swollen and tender as a result of carrying the extra pregnancy weight. And the good news is that those benefits will stay in your body for a few days! That's right, the effects will continue working after the treatment so one treatment helps you prepare your body naturally for a few days. Which could result in the birth of your baby because you are mentally and physically prepared.
Remember to always stay informed. Induction is not always the wrong solution. (I did end up being induced due to medical concerns with my son. After my Estimated Due Date. Under much guidance from medical care providers, myself, my partner and my close friends. An informed choice.) There are many reasons why we are at a great advantage in society today because it is an option. But birthing in December is not a great reason for induction. And inducing before you are full term if there are not other medical reasons for it is also not a great reason.
Trust your body, trust your baby. Control what you can, be surprised by the rest. Save medical interventions for when they are medically necessary. I am here to help you do all this!
About your author:
Tanya (formally Goreing but recently married so now Tanya Hill) is an alternative health practitioner, doula and educator. She is passionate about improving the health and wellness of families, especially surrounding pregnancy, birth and parenting. Practicing in Cambridge ON, she offers in home and in clinic treatments.
Tanya Goreing is the proud mother of one boy and the owner of Soul Treatments. The natural health of woman and children is her passion!