Chiropractors in underperforming practices are often suffering from the effects of poor boundaries. They often can't see them. After all, if they knew where they were enabling costly impulses, they might be inclined to reduce them.
That's because poor boundaries often permit some type of compelling secondary gain:
Agreeing to treat their symptom – the dopamine hit when the patient credits you for their recovery.
Avoiding a written procedure manual – so you can feel indispensable by constantly calling audibles.
Caring too much about what a patient does or doesn't do – believing that helicoptering over patients will produce better outcomes.
Spending too much time with patients – it allows you to get your social needs met.
Failing to increase your fees to match inflation – reduce the likelihood of patients dropping out of care.
And the list goes on.
Usually, the pain must eclipse the gain before we're motivated to make the necessary change.
Bill Esteb has been a chiropractic patient and advocate since 1981. He is the creative director of Patient Media and the co-founder of Perfect Patients. He’s been a regular speaker at Parker Seminars and other chiropractic gatherings since 1985. He is the author of 12 books that explore the doctor/patient relationship from a patient’s point of view. His chiropractic blog, in-office consultations, patient focus groups and consulting calls have helped hundreds of chiropractors around the world. His Monday Morning Motivation is emailed to over 10,000 subscribers each week.