3. Practical Methodology
In Lesson 90, the student has been presented with some of the psychological aspects of counseling as they may apply in the day-to-day practice of a professional Hygienist. We have in this discussion divided methodology into three main categories and an enlargement on each of these will follow. We should bear in mind, however, that the psychology of counseling can never actually be completely divorced from the more mundane aspects of counseling, from the techniques. The two are inextricably intertwined.
3.1 How to Inspire Your Client
We have already put forth our thesis that using specific case-studies may well be the single most effective tool to inspire clients to “go and do likewise.”
We have stated that case studies of persons who have successfully recovered from a like ailment will, all other things being equal, have a greater impact on the psyche than will unrelated case studies.
Also, case studies which are given to the client in a printout form and then the information contained therein reinforced by the reading together of the information, combined with an opportunity for the practitioner to point out specific details and/or to clarify others, and for the client to ask questions, will prove a much more effective tool for providing encouragement than using either method alone.
Furthermore, the print-out may be taken home by the client for subsequent re-reading, thus reinforcing the first psychic impact.
3.1.1 Me, Too!
Inspiration and reinforcement (support) can be augmented by using the “Me, Too!” technique, an easily workable tool. It embodies the “If you can do it, I can, too!” philosophy.
The supporting methodology used here is simple. It is a gathering together of persons with similar affections in a ding, held either at the practitioner’s office or home, or the home of a cooperative client.
This group should, ideally, have at least one member who has either made a remarkable recovery applying Hygienic principles in his/her own lifestyle or who, at least, has already witnessed sufficient improvement in his/her condition as to want to share experiences with others.
In the early days of your practice, you may not have worked with a sufficient number of similar conditions to be able to put together this kind of group. In this event, simply set up a support group composed of a few clients having a variety of troubling conditions, perhaps only three or four, just so that they can share their experiences and learn from one another.
Either grouping will work. Indeed, it is difficult to predict in advance which grouping will prove to be the more effective for you. Try them out and see!
3.1.2 The Meeting
At the beginning of your meeting, have a round of introductions. At first, just use first names. As time goes on, individuals will seek out and become friends with those persons best suited to them. Repeat these introductions at every meeting so that newcomers will feel at ease within the group and also so that group members will become more closely knit.
The practitioner may pass out case study print-outs—one or two are usually sufficient. These studies may be gleaned from various works by Hygienic writers. They are good to use as an opening wedge to encourage discussion by individual group members.
Discussions may range from the negative to the positive. We should not be discouraged by negative stories since such can often provide an excellent base for learning. The practitioner can give explanations of why certain “negatives” (healing crises) occur from time to time and what their portent is.
For example, many clients are disturbed by the initial weight loss so common in the early stages. When the weight loss is explained in terms of tearing down an old structure prior to building a new one, clients, more often than not, accept the rationale of the fact of weight-loss as a prior condition for later health improvement.
We use the blackboard frequently. It can be especially helpful in explaining weight loss. Progress is so often impeded simply by fear when clients do not thoroughly understand why they are losing pound after pound. They begin to question the validity of their whole program! We use the Diagram Method in such situations.
Weight loss begins to accelerate, then slows down somewhat but still goes on, due to
catalytic tearing-down and discarding of inferior and diseased parts. All happens under the control of body’s intelligence center. Anabolism, the building phase, is submerged to catalysis. Weight is reduced. Swiftly at first, less as time goes on.
At the Mid-Point:
Here equilibrium is established. There is no further weight loss because the intelligent control center decides that sufficient inferior tissue has now been removed.
Final Adjustment: As the correct lifestyle is continued, Anabolism begins to accelerate, Catabolism slows down. The individual is well on the road to superior health.
The above is just one illustration of how a practitioner can use group meetings to explain away questions which may trouble many clients. This permits the practitioner to address individual problems in greater depth in private consultations.
At group meetings, all persons should be given an opportunity to speak, to ask questions, to share and to encourage one another. The practitioner should use such meetings to guide, direct, encourage participation and to explain when explanations are in order. As students of this course, you will be well prepared to handle most questions as they may arise from time to time.
Spouses and/or other concerned persons may, with the permission of the client, be invited to these meetings and, indeed, should be encouraged to attend. Hygienic practices are usually totally foreign to their thinking, too, and unless they fully understand and are in accord with what is suggested and taught by you, they may well prove an insurmountable obstruction to your client’s future progress.
The key to success in these group meetings may be how well spontaneity is encouraged, and this may well depend on the attitude of the practitioner. Never permit yourself to be bored. Try always to cultivate concern, interest, that deep desire to help. Sick people often suffer much and the spontaneity they feel at your meeting can prove a powerfully positive influence for good.
Spontaneity may be difficult to achieve but if one makes a conscious effort to make these discussions free and open, a time for sharing both successes and failures, more courage seems to develop.
All of us, at times, have to learn to “take it on the chin” when healing crises arise, but often these meetings with other individuals, who have experienced exactly what you are now going through, can enable you to pick up the pieces and begin again, confident that when the crisis is over, you have passed a major milestone on your road to full recovery. If you have to “wing it alone,” sometimes you can become discouraged and falter.
Include the quiet ones in the group discussion by addressing them directly as, for example, “Sue, what do you feel about all this?” Note the use of the word FEEL instead of the word THINK.
We all have feelings and most people, even the timid ones, will respond to a FEEL question where they might panic at a “What do you THINK” one!
3.1.3 Ending the Group Meeting
Always end your group meetings on a high note! Encourage your clients to hold their head up, to lift up their hearts as well, to turn their thoughts inward to positive channels of “I CAN!” Urge them to unify their energy, to draw down a blind, as it were, on matters of lesser importance and to keep their minds on an inner vision of what they SHALL become. Encourage them to emulate Lillian Russell’s way of pushing aside the unlovely, who said that she put a sign on her mental door that read: “Only the serene and the lovely can enter here.” She said that a thousand voices might call her away from her resolve, but she trained herself not to hear them. All of us must train ourselves not to hear the negative voices that cry aloud, in favor of keeping our thoughts focused in the direction we wish to go. We cannot let the distracting disruptive outer forces weaken our own resolve. The future can be too beautiful!
Gather your group together in a circle. Let them clasp hands and repeat in unison some simple CREDO, such as:
I AM WHOLE!
I AM PERFECT!
I AM STRONG!
I AM HAPPY!
BECAUSE I AM IN TUNE WITH MYSELF AND I AM HEALTHY!
SO BE IT!
The saying together of a simple CREDO will help your clients to accept the correctness of their program. It will help them to believe that they can have anything they desire, especially superb health. All that they will be required to do is to approach life’s problems constructively, maintaining, all the while, a vision of the possible, and then to work at fulfillment.
Meetings such as we have suggested can challenge those present to continue on, to work for maximum recovery. As conditions of individual clients begin to improve, you will observe that, one by one, they gradually leave the side of the negative newcomers and pass over to become a member of the more positive “Me-too-ers!” Each passover serves to inspire your other newer clients to go forward, not to become discouraged, and, importantly, you, the practitioner, too!
Before closing your meeting, announce a time for gathering together again. Meetings should be held at least once a month. Officers may be elected or appointed to take care of routine announcements.
Usually, a few clients will volunteer to provide certain necessary services such as reminder telephone calls, etc. It is well sometimes to suggest to your clients that they “think” about a certain topic as, for example, “How Important is Exercise in Your Plan for Health?” Then, this subject may be the focus of the group’s attention at the upcoming meeting. Be sure to ask those in attendance to sign a registration sheet. After you have been meeting for awhile, clients may ask if they can bring a friend. Encourage them to do so. It is within your right to request a minimal fee from clients for your services at these meetings. The money may be used to cover your time and expenses.
Don’t forget that you must be a visible example of poise and peace, of successful accomplishment of what the clients themselves desire so fervently. When you are, you have a certain magic about you that you unconsciously impart to those who seek your help and you will be especially successful in conducting these important group meetings.
3.2 The Practitioner at Work
As a practicing Hygienist, you will be pursuing your career at every private and public appearance: when meeting with individual clients, when hosting or conducting a small group for purposes of furthering their education in Hygienic practices, philosophy and principles; and, certainly, when you begin to hold classes and seminars for the public, which we hope all of you will consider doing, and this as soon as practicable.
You will greatly influence not only the progress of your clients, but also your own, in a number of ways. Intelligent practitioners who wish to become sought out for their expertise will ask themselves many questions, and future success will depend, in great measure, upon what they do to improve in these areas of concern. We especially recommend that you address the following areas:
3.2.1 Questions to Ask Ourselves
- Am I a reasonably good example of what I teach?
- Do I speak positively, with authority, but not in an arrogant manner? Or am I too hesitant in my pronouncements?
- Am I able to impart verbally and by my body movements and facial expressions the sense of empathy and concern I feel toward my clients? Do they sense that I really know exactly how they feel; that I understand their anxieties, their concerns? Do I convey to them a confidence in my words?
- Do I listen more than I talk? Do I use the pronoun “I” too often?
- Do I appreciate my own value?
If the practitioner has recovered from some specific condition, s/he is usually more likely to speak with authority on that subject and perhaps also on the general subject of how best to regain one’s health. S/he may even choose to specialize in a particular disorder as, for example, rheumatic or heart disorders.
However, having recovered from a particular malady is not, of course a prerequisite for practicing as a Hygienist! Even being capable of maintaining a high level of health under the prevailing unhealthful conditions and circumstances, can be, in and of itself, an inspiring challenge to induce lifestyle changes in your clients. In fact, this may well be considered a “plus!”
One’s past experiences may well color the tone of the voice, impart a certain glow to one’s manner and add conviction to statements, all helpful influences. But, a practitioner should not pretend to know what s/he does NOT know nor act a part being something s/he is not! Deception will always fail. Knowledge imparted honestly will always be more conducive to trust. If a client asks you a question and you do not know the answer, just say that you do not know, but add that you will try to find the correct answer.
If you are still recovering from some condition, say so. Share your progress, even your regressions, with your clients. We recall one time when Elizabeth broke out in a wild rash. It began behind her ears and on to her cheeks. She was a sight to behold and, to make matters worse, the itching was intense. And, to top the whole affair off, we were just about to open an advanced course of study!
We went right ahead with our plans! The class consisted of a mix of old and new students. Elizabeth stood up bravely and announced to those present that the subject of the day was, you guessed right! Healing Crises! We all learned a lot from the experience as the days passed. Students learned about fasting and about what occurs in the body during these days. In fact, those students watched the progress of this entire healing crisis and learned much from it. We are confident that the students who attended that class will not panic when they are confronted with their first healing crises! They will continue on making whatever changes are required in their lifestyle to accomplish their ultimate goal.
The lesson to be learned from this episode is that, if you feel you are lacking in some respect, then you should try as best you can either to remedy the situation or to use it; to cope with it or to accommodate yourself to it. All of us can probably improve our appearance, our attitude, our confidence, in many areas. It is well to take a frank appraisal of one’s appearance and assets and to seek actively to improve in those areas where improvement is indicated, or where it might well be to your advantage to do so. Nobody’s perfect, but we can all strive for perfection, even if we never achieve it! Remember that you are a living example of all that Natural Hygiene promises. Therefore, why not promise them the best! That will surely influence your clients to make the lifestyle changes you deem appropriate.
Do I speak positively, with authority in my voice, but not in an arrogant manner? Or am I too hesitant in my pronouncements?
What has all this to do with inducing clients to change bad habits into good habits? A great deal! You will be able to induce constructive changes in your clients’ lifestyles effectively and consistently, the more talented you become in presenting the changes you deem necessary for a particular client and then follow by explaining the reasons why such changes are vital to your client’s well-being. We accomplish this largely through our spoken words, perhaps because they are more personal.
If you are presently hesitant in your manner of speaking or have some other limiting factor, it might be well for you to take a course in public speaking. These are offered from time to time by most schools and colleges and very inexpensively, too, if not altogether at no cost.
Be happily appreciative of your clients. You will reveal this in your manner and in your voice. Your clients have honored you by seeking you out. Leave all arrogance or impatience out of your voice, for such will only serve to turn people away from you.
Everybody likes to hear nice things about themselves. Tell your clients that you appreciate them and especially, remember always to compliment them as they reach a Hygienic milestone. Such appreciation encourages them to go forward and not to either stand still or regress. It inspires them to make the required lifestyle adjustments. Just take a few moments of your consultation time to compliment your client about something. Practice on your friends, the people you meet in the supermarket, wherever you go, and it will soon become natural to you to be more appreciative of others. Remember to compliment those who attend your meetings, the little ones and the big ones. They have given you a compliment by coming, give them one in return. Inspire your clients by being appreciative of small accomplishments if you sincerely want big changes to follow.
Dale Carnegie admonished his students always to say “WE” instead of “you.” Instead of saying, “John, I want you to do such and such,” it is better to say, “John, don’t you believe we all would be better served healthwise, if we would do thus and so?” The former gives the impression one is talking down to his client. The latter includes you—the authority—as well as the client—the student. You must make certain lifestyle changes, too!
Avoid the negative in your attitude, your looks and in your words. In fact, having a positive attitude and a positive look about you will often speak louder than words. It may, of course, be necessary to scold a client occasionally, but don’t make a practice of it. Avoid it if you can. The shrew soon loses a mate. The scolding or arrogant practitioner soon loses his/her clients and they lose their opportunity to live their lives healthfully.
Talk with your clients, not down at them. Talk in terms they can understand about their concerns, their worries, their problems. Show them how to get rid of their health problems so that their other concerns will either be completely solved or their impact lessened. We are reminded of a session we had one time with a very obese gentleman, the president of a large corporation. We were obviously concerned about his excess weight, his high blood pressure and other ailments, about how best to address these issues and how we were to persuade him to make the necessary changes in his lifestyle. We had been consulting with this man for some six months and, of course, had made some progress, but it was limited due to the fact that, like so many obese ones, he had a tendency to revert to his former bad habits from time to time, even to bingeing, all of which retarded his progress. He was psychologically wedded to his old ways and reluctant to change.
However, at one of our consultations he confided that he was extremely concerned about his future. Here was a man in his early fifties. Where he had once been a proud, highly-confident man, he was now a frightened man. It seems he had just been fired from his highly-lucrative position, one he had occupied, and successfully so, for many years, because of certain overseas developments which required worldwide reorganization.
It would have been useless for us to have lectured him about his shortcomings or, indeed, to have talked about anything else. Such a disregard for his feelings and valid concerns would have been inexcusable because his mental state was such as to negate physical reconstruction of the rest of his body anyway. So, during that entire session, we never once directed our attention to his obesity, to his high blood pressure. Instead we listened and interjected, from time to time, some positive thoughts about how old doors close and new ones open, that we make our own world, our own opportunities; that we can attain whatever we want in life or in this world if we determine what is required of us, what is needed, and then follow through with the doing. We did suggest that becoming healthier, by making positive changes in his eating and living habits, would serve to clear his mind and that this important change would serve to open many doors for him.
When he came back three months later for his next appointment, his blood pressure had dropped dramatically, an examination had showed that over a dozen existing polyps in his colon had either completely disappeared or were greatly diminished in size. He announced with a happy smile that he had a new position which seemed very promising. He had made many of the necessary changes; he had corrected many of his bad habits. Indeed, he was so enthusiastic about his new way of life that he came armed with a whole list of questions for us to answer.
Welcome questions from your clients. Don’t be impatient and think that answering them is taking up your valuable time. Your clients are interested or they would not ask!
Always remember that your clients will be more inclined to change incorrect habits of eating and living when they discuss the rationale with you on a one-to-one basis, when they receive a sympathetic ear to their queries and problems. The questions may seem too simple to devote your valuable time to them, but remember they are important to the one who asks.
Be sincere and open with your clients. Your inner conviction of the rightness of what you have to offer will help to bridge the gap of misinformation which restrains your clients’ forward progress and prevents their making necessary changes. Use the spoken word in a confident, but sympathetic way and your clients will usually respond favorably and follow your wise counsel.
Am I able to impart verbally and by my body movements and facial expressions the sense of empathy I feel toward my clients? Do they sense that I really know exactly how they feel; that I understand their anxieties, their concerns? Do I convey to them a confidence in my words?
As students of Life Science you are preparing for one of the most rewarding careers it is possible for you to pursue. You are preparing for a career of service which, if well done, will fulfill your reason for being—to help others to grow in body, mind and spirit; as well as rewarding you financially and in many other perhaps intangible ways.
If you naturally feel empathy toward your clients and concern about their needs, you will instinctively impart to them the sense that you understand their needs and are vitally interested in helping them. There will be a “oneness” between you and them and they will respond more positively and be more inclined to follow your directions.
If, however, you do not, by nature, feel this kind of empathy and are planning to enter into Hygienic practice solely for the purpose of making money, then you will surely fail because you will be wrongly motivated and if you are wrongly motivated, you will be unable to convince people to change their ways of eating and living.
However, if you are sincerely interested in helping people to change incorrect habits of eating and living into a more correct lifestyle, then you can develop certain techniques which will assist you even though, at present, you do not naturally feel empathy toward people; and you can do this simply by practicing it!
You may have to pretend at first, to act a part, but all of us do that every day, don’t we? By practicing you will soon begin to evidence in word, deeds, facial expressions, body movements, a gesture here and there at the right time, that you really DO care about your clients.
Sincere interest, an encouraging word when needed, a smile instead of a frown, a hand on a shoulder, just touching a troubled person in a friendly and gentle manner at a time of need can change a worried person’s whole demeanor and outlook on life, can encourage them to go on when they might otherwise be inclined to give up.
So, enrich your personality by consciously striving to develop a “ONE-NESS” with your clients. It will not only help them over their more difficult crises, but will help you in your career.
Sincere interest will cause people to be more confident in their relationship with you and when confident of you and of your understanding of them, they will be less likely to falter and more willing to follow your suggestions.
Consider yourself a rebuilder of men and women, for that is what you are. To rebuild a human structure, unlike beginning to fashion a house of wood and stone, you must have understanding of the mind and soul before you can build a worthy structure.
Work on your personality. If necessary, take personality lessons. Begin with positive attitudes, work at understanding people’s concerns, and learn how to support your clients through their most difficult times. Having a sincere empathy toward those who seek your help will not only bring you success in many ways, but it will serve to give many back their lives, to give them another chance to live in health for many years to come. There can be no more worthy calling!
Do I listen more than I talk? Do I use the pronoun “I” too often? There is an old French proverb which, when translated, reads, “Little by little, the bird builds its nest.” Just so, clients change bad habits into good habits and learn how to rebuild their bodies.
The ability to listen to other people is a requirement for success in any profession. It is absolutely essential to the successful Hygienic practitioner.
We have to learn how to give up our set notions of how a meeting should proceed and especially of how a consultation should proceed. Of course, we should always have a plan, but sometimes we have to let the wind blow where it will. Crises come and crises go and current happenings revealed to you as you listen can often direct your immediate course of action.
Always have something in reserve to talk about, of course, some points you wish to express or discuss with your clients, but keep the ingredient of spontaneity alive. Let your clients talk. You be a good listener. More often than not, the greatest good will come to your client when s/he has an opportunity to tell another human being about anxieties that lie heavy on the heart and trouble the soul.
Once these have been revealed, they may well influence the changes in lifestyle which you may then suggest as the next desirable course to follow. And, of course, shared concerns and anxieties are already half “cured!” Letting your clients talk can be highly therapeutic.
A part of listening well is learning when to ask the right questions. Sometimes the appropriate question interjected at the right time will lead the interview in the direction you have planned and bring out a consciousness of further need for change on the part of your client.
For example, a woman came to us with many serious health problems. She was so satisfied with her progress by the time her second appointment had come and gone that she failed to keep her third one.
We called to remind her of our appointment, at which time she said how excited she was at her progress and how well-pleased she was that everything was going along so well—so well that she thought she had no further need to consult with us.
We listened as the voice went up and down and when she was apparently finished, we simply suggested that perhaps after some forty years of building disease it might take just a little longer and a little more guidance to rebuild her body the way she would like to and did she not think perhaps that she might learn something more about herself and about how she functions so that she could have it
The woman thought a minute and said, “I believe you’re right. I guess I really have just made a start. When do you want to see me?”
The appointment was made and a new study begun. We have been working together on rebuilding her body now for almost a year. Our client has found that there were many more adjustments that were yet to be made and that making them correctly has yielded rich rewards. She now has so much confidence in us that she knows that we will advise her when we think she is ready to “go it alone.”
Listening and knowing when and how to ask the right questions is a talent possessed by all successful people. Cultivate it well and you will find your clients much more amenable to change. To be successful we must use every attribute we possess to influence clients to change their lifestyle. Becoming a good listener is one of the best!
Do it appreciate my own value? Inspiring clients rests on both the tangible and the intangible assets of the practitioner. Hygienists, more than any other practitioners in the whole health sciences arena, should appreciate their own value and, especially the value of their services to their clients.
As a student of this course you have gleaned true scientific facts of life, you have learned the true science of healing. The Hygienists alone (among the “healers” of the world) understand that people are the “architects of their own miseries” and that it is the Hygienist who can lead people into a harmony of body, mind and spirit which will enable them to reap the wonderful rewards of a life correctly lived.
We Hygienists need to be confident of the Tightness of what we impart to our clients, to appreciate its worth and be able to convey our confidence in that worth to our clients. How else can we expect them to trust us with their most precious possession, their lives?
We Hygienists are valuable and especially so when we have applied and continue to apply Hygienic truths in our own lives; when we ourselves have made the necessary changes in our own lifestyles to demonstrate the worth of what we propound. Once we have conquered ourselves, then we are prepared to become worthy and wise teachers of the healing truths learned in this science of life and living.
It does not matter if you are not handsome or if your face is lined with the ravages of past pain. When you smile at your clients, your value to them shines through. When we are certain of our worth, we can forget self and become genuinely interested in others, and this ability to be un-self-conscious and take interest in other people is actually in a direct relationship to our personal estimate of our own worth!
We should, of course, set our standards high. They should be in keeping, on a par with, our value. Only then will we be able to cause clients to appreciate what they themselves can become, to appreciate their own potential and to strive to attain their goal. It is you that can impart to them the reality of organic existence, that life and nature are with them at all times, working on their side, planning and overcoming obstacles and all in their behalf. And it all happens through you, the knowledgeable Hygienist!
In other words, the magic of the sense of your own value will serve to enhance their appraisal of their worth and encourage them to work harder to make the necessary changes called for by their own bodies so that they can become worthy of all that life has to offer to those all too few individuals who are healthy enough to hold it precious. Inspiring clients to make the necessary changes in their lifestyles can be accomplished in many ways. We have named a few. As Hygienists we understand the need for change, and are called upon to use every asset legitimately at our command to encourage the sick ones to change sick habits into more health-promoting habits. The practitioner who can, by word, deed, attitude and by his sense of self-worth, inspire others to leave off the old destructive ways and begin a new and healthier lifestyle, will become a leader among peers.
In the second edition of Foundations of Health Science by Henkel, Means, Smolensky and Sawrey (Allyn and Bacon, Inc., Poston, 1972. Page 159) we are told that “motivated behavior is behavior that is directed toward the attainment of some goal, object, or purpose. Motives have to do with the wants, wishes, desires, and purposes of the individual and the manner of their attainment.”
It would be difficult to find a better way to define motivation as it particularly applies to the relationship between a practicing Hygienist and the client. The successful practitioner should always bear in mind that those persons who seek you out are already motivated to a certain extent to perform. They have a goal and a purpose for being in your presence. They wish to become well again and they hope you have the knowledge either to work some magic or to tell them what magic is needed for them to attain their objective.
The first part of motivation then may be to “disillusion” them, i.e., to help them to reach an understanding that there is no magical road to lead them to a higher status of health. Few understand, of course, that superb health can only be achieved through a process of discarding bad habits followed by a joint effort which involves rebuilding and maintaining. The practitioner must build on the existing foundation of many false ideas and superstitions and then go on to disabuse the client of his original false concepts and change them, to direct clients into new and perhaps unfamiliar and “strange” ways of living and eating.
In Hygienic practice, motivation, in almost every instance, involves “holding out the carrot;” imparting to the clients an enlarged view of what the future CAN hold for them PROVIDED they do “thus and so.”
As practicing Hygienists we learn to judge individual clients’ capabilities rather quickly. How well do they respond to large changes? Are they more comfortable, less emotionally disturbed, perhaps, with smaller, less-challenging changes? We adjust our thinking and our suggestions accordingly after full explanation of the fact that an abrupt about-face is always more conducive to a rapid and more complete return to full health than are smaller changes.
However, some clients may be frightened if proposed changes appear too much for them either to understand or to handle, and when this is the case, they do not continue on a Hygienic program for very long. With such clients, we and they are better served when we provide reasonable suggestions which may immediately be met. With these more reluctant clients, a planned program of instructive changes combined with a developing insight into the cause-and-effect relationship in building health can lead to a fuller understanding of the need for certain changes which have been designed by you to bring them into the desired fullness of health.
Group meetings to which family members are invited (a family night, for example) often helps the clients by motivating members of the family to be more cooperative and supportive of their efforts to obtain their goal of better health.
If the suggested changes prove too demanding, then they must be simplified. In other words, they should be adjusted to more realistic expectations. Avoid placing the clients in a position of strong conflict either with themselves, their families, or with you. Some conflict may, at times, be inevitable, but we should strive to minimize it. Remember that individuals differ in their maturity and we have to be in tune with these differences when we voice our suggested changes.
3.4 The Hygienist Is a Teacher
Hygienists are basically teachers of the ways and means whereby the present state of ill health of a client can be changed to one of improved health. In order to bring their efforts to a successful conclusion, they must employ many of the modern tools of education. We will, of course, not be able to suggest all the possible tools of the trade but, hopefully, we can give you some of the ones we have found most useful in our own practice.
1. When to Use Fasting
Fasting represents, in most instances, a giant leap. To fast is always a first priority change when feasible according to the emotional stability and prior “knowledge of a particular client with respect to what is involved in fasting.
We suggest that, from time to time, you hold classes on fasting at which time procedures are given. At these classes case studies may be presented, as well as personal experiences related by clients who have themselves fasted to good advantage. These meetings give a time for learning, for asking questions and for becoming familiar with a hitherto unknown procedure.
2. The “Baby Steps” Technique
Recommended for more timid clients. Both the practitioner and the client should understand that sometimes the recovery period is prolonged and at times even discouraging. Generally this is a limited technique to use to help less stable clients to make required changes and/or to use with poorly-informed clients. However, the choice between 1 and 2 must be made and all clients will have to be evaluated as to which will prove the more effective and/or acceptable, emotionally, to them.
3. The Historical Review
Sometimes clients become discouraged and think they are making little or no progress even though you know this to be untrue. At such times, it is well to review a client’s historical record, noting on a blackboard, when possible, various symptoms shown on first meeting and reminding the client of the positive changes (which you have diligently noted on the client’s record at each meeting) which have subsequently occurred, even though these be minor ones.
With some clients it may be advisable to call the client’s attention to these improvements at each meeting. This may be especially advisable when a client suffers from a major disorder which is difficult to manage as, for example, muscular dystrophy, which is generally conceded not to be amenable to Hygienic practices especially insofar as expecting a complete “cure” is concerned.
In such cases small improvements can be very significant. We sometimes have to show the carrot frequently, to reassure and reassure, time and time again, in order to encourage the clients to keep their gaze on the light at the end of the tunnel rather than focusing their minds on the troubling symptoms that presently annoy.
4. The Inner Circle Concept
This concept is applicable in more difficult cases and especially with clients who may experience rather frequent healing crises. It helps one to keep clients on course, making the necessary changes in their lifestyles that you feel appropriate at a particular moment in time.
The Inner Circle shows that healing does not occur in a straight line but rather in cycles. We progress from one healing crisis to the next but these become less frequent and less severe until finally, by our diligent attention to correct living and eating, we reach the Inner Circle, at which time our body, mind and soul are in perfect harmony. Our goal has been reached.
The Inner Circle Concept can be depicted from time to time as need arises to remind clients of the cyclical nature of healing. They often like to estimate how far they have progressed in their healing.
5. The Direct Challenge
Sometimes it becomes necessary to confront a client who is reluctant to make certain changes with a direct challenge. Are you less strong than So and So? So and So can be another client, but remember to use a client’s name only if you received permission to do so and only then. Otherwise, let the challenge refer to a nameless person, or to a person depicted in one of the printed case studies which you have previously reviewed with the client. Try to incorporate in such clients the “I CAN, do it if So and So can do it” concept. Generally, retaining an inner vision of something we yearn for can sustain us through the rough times and carry us forward to a successful attainment.
6. Family Counselling
When all members of the family are convinced of the need for them to change their lifestyles and to make a mutual effort to do so, success is generally assured. We recently experienced such a happening and have seen how effective the combined motivation can be in achieving a common goal.
The first client was a diabetic married daughter in a certain family. She had been diagnosed as being insulin-dependent. Her improvement was dramatic and swift with considerable reduction in her insulin intake. Then a sister who suffered from systemic lupus joined her.
Next, came a son, age 7, the child of the first daughter. He was an asthmatic. His improvement was also excellent. Then came the grandparents, the father and mother of the two sisters. They were both in their middle fifties. Finally, the oldest daughter and her husband joined in the program, all with individual problems and goals.
We eventually, by the consent of all, gathered the entire family together in a single series of conferences devoting two hours to each such meeting. At these gatherings, questions and answers were given; each person presented a progress report; there was sharing and planning for the future good of all. Progress was so satisfactory that now we hold these family conferences at three-month intervals, at which time we review, appraise present states and progress, and provide encouragement. Where changes are required, they are suggested.
All members of the family are very supportive of one another and highly enthusiastic about their new way of eating and living. The grandparents have a pool and the daughters, their husbands, and all the grandchildren often gather for a family party around the pool. They tell us that even those who do not actively attend our conferences are slowly “getting into the act.” At any rate, they are all enjoying their “carrots!”
7. Using a Placebo
This technique is sometimes useful when working with elderly, very emotionally distraught clients, who are reluctant to take the first timid “Baby steps.”
All of us would probably agree that using a supplement of any kind is unHygienic in principle. However, it can be a useful tool in exceptional circumstances such as when an emotional person needs a rope to hang on to. At such times we have recourse to a pill, one made of vegetables dehydrated in a vacuum at low temperatures. It is relatively harmless, certainly far less so than a sugar pill. We advise our clients that this pill is to be used for a stated limited time to “fill in anything missing” in their diet. This seems to reassure these disturbed individuals. It often calms them down emotionally and gives them the confidence they require to make the first primary changes in their lifestyles. Once this hurdle has been taken, the others seem to follow more easily.
8. Only One Way to Go!
When all medical resources have been exhausted and have failed, as they invariably do, clients are usually more amenable to change. You will all have clients who are in this position. They are, at one and the same time, both easy to work with and difficult.
One of our students was faced with such a situation. She had taken a course in nutrition when she learned that her husband was terminally ill with cancer of the bladder. Armed with her new knowledge about the science of living in health and in disease, she made a complete turnaround in her lifestyle. She refused to place her husband in the hospice, refused to remove him to the hospital as demanded by the consulting oncologist, and said she would care for him by herself and in their own comfortable home. The specialist and a representative from the hospice were permitted to visit whenever they chose to do so. A nurse from the hospice visited several times each week.
The man’s diet was changed abruptly to an alkaline diet of fresh uncooked fruits and vegetables. Two items only were served at a meal. On some days only juices were served—fruits and vegetables at suitable intervals. Sunbaths were taken when possible and the man exercised every day to the extent possible. Toward the last, he was gently massaged by his wife and this several times during the day and especially along his spinal cord.
It is interesting to know that this man required no pain killers except an occasional aspirin until the last 24 hours, when he took six aspirin tablets. At his funeral, which we attended, we asked one of the visiting nurses from the hospice if she had ever witnessed such a peaceful conclusion to a terminally-ill cancer patient. She shook her head and then commented that she had never seen anything like this before in her entire practice.
9. Overcoming Compulsive Habits and the ”My Doctor Says” Complex
These are perhaps the most difficult of all changes for the client to make, with overeating probably being the most difficult of all bad habits to overcome. In fact, it is said that only about 5% of the obese are successful in reducing their weight to what it should be.
Encouragement and constant prodding are helpful. Consultations should be much more frequent than with other clients. We ask our obese clients to keep a weekly weight record and at each consultation we record any changes. We find it necessary constantly to remind the reluctant ones of their goal, of what obtaining a more normal figure and weight might mean to them in health benefits and of the social and business doors that might well be opened to them.
We also generally ask our obese clients to keep a record of their meals. They usually “confess” to their sneaking and their “bingeing.” The old saying states, “Confession is good for the soul!” Perhaps asking for such confession will sometimes be helpful.
Getting over the “my doctor says” complex stubbornly maintained by some clients requires patience on your part. In fact, to overcome it, you have to come up with a better product, so to speak, to be successful with this kind of individual. Of course, we can always remind them, as and when the subject comes up, that they are here—in your office and consulting you—because “my doctor” did NOT have the answers!
In other words, when possible, these clients, if they are to attain their desire to be healthier than they presently are, must be led finally to accept the reality of past failure and replace it with the new opportunity for success now offered to them simply by applying their newly-learned Hygienic ways of living and eating in their own lifestyles.
10. The Bionutritional Blood Test Analysis and Profile
We find this a highly-motivating tool for change and it is so with most clients, almost without exception. By word and by picture the Analysis and Profile presents to the client the realities of blood condition as revealed by a series of tests made at a standard laboratory which are interpreted and plotted for the client’s study. The necessity for change, when such exists, is made clear. We suggest that our clients have these made at six-month intervals. When good changes are observed, as is generally the case when Hygienic changes in lifestyle are adopted, clients are further motivated to improve and make any additional indicated changes.
11. Grouping Clients
The practitioner should take time out to study clients’ records, grouping them together by type of disorder being experienced, as follows:
- Arthritic Clients
- Diabetic Clients
- Clients with nervous disorders
- Clients with heart disorders
- Clients suffering from respiratory diseases, etc., etc.
Make a critical study of the following as shown in past and present history:
Cocaine, other drugs
Eats junk food
Lacks sufficient money
Make a special listing for excesses, such as: works too hard, eats too much, etc. This will help you to guide individual clients and to suggest appropriate further changes to be made.
When feasible and practical, have group meetings for mutual discussion and analysis of methods used, changes already made, improvements forthcoming, and future planning. Where good results have been slow in coming, these meetings can sometimes be a means of ferreting out hidden causes. They can also provide a meeting of the minds, so to speak, an understanding by all participants of he need for change and for time to accomplish the required healing and, perhaps, even a better understanding of the commonality of cause among participants.
Only those clients who are willing to participate in a frank and open discussion should be included in this type of group discussion because they amount to a “Show and Tell” meeting which sometimes requires disclosure of more intimate details of one’s lifestyle. Some clients, of course, are reluctant to participate in frank and open discussion, but with willing clients, the results can often prove highly motivating.
12. “Sell the Rose, Not the Thorn”
Always hold out to your clients the vision of the possible. Do not dwell on the present nor on the past overly long. Clarify all issues involved as they come up, of course, and make clear the possible consequences of incorrect habits, but place emphasis on the salubrious effects of making all appropriate changes in lifestyle. A positive approach is always more effective in selling. Salesmen are advised to sell the benefits accruing to the buyer. The successful practitioner must sell the benefits of living Hygienically and these are legion!
Keep nudging clients along, inch by inch, if necessary. The results can so often be spectacular! A single case study will make our point. Four years ago a woman came to us seeking help. She had had several massive heart attacks, a mastectomy with lymph nodes extirpated, her shoulders and back were severely curved, and she was fainting seven and eight times a day. Her blood tests revealed an almost impossible state. As we write this today, we have received a letter which reads, in part, as follows: “We have enjoyed our summer and I am glad to report that I haven’t had such a feeling of well-being for ages. I really feel good.” She is still having some minor problems, a few hemorrhoids, for example. But, her improvement demonstrates the magic of Life Science. Sometimes, we and our clients can become discouraged, but motivation and inspiration return once we view results such as this woman has experienced.
3.5 Knowledge of What To Do—and How to Do It
This is where Hygienic practitioners come into their own! They have the knowledge of what their clients must accomplish in the way of making specific changes in their lifestyle if they wish to attain a higher level of health, and also, on broad terms at least, of how they must proceed.
The practitioner must, at one and the same time, become the parent who evaluates the situation and determine the proper course of action, the teacher who expounds on methodology, and the overseer who follows procedure to a successful conclusion.
All practitioners have their own personal equipment: ability to lead, respect for the client’s needs, sincerity, emotional maturity, sense of humor or lack thereof, appearance, ability to empathize with the client’s sufferings. The higher their equipment quotient, the more likely that they will be able to transfer their knowledge of “what, when, how,” etc., to clients and thereby maximize results.
The average person’s knowledge about him or herself is abysmal though much information is available, indeed an extreme abundance. But, at one and the same time, there is also an extreme confusion about humans and what is required of them to maintain them in a state of excellence.
The modern child has not been taught to read and/or to consult various authors or sources on matters of health, but rather has been taught to follow the advice given in the media, these imparting only the medical view of how to obtain health and to keep it. Early in their lives, people are programmed to consult the medical mentor for guidance as to what to do and how to take care of themselves in sickness and in health and, to the masses, only the medical view is valid.
“Science” divides humans into fragments. Life Science alone treats people as a unitized whole which is governed by immutable laws. Orthodoxy fails to take into account the ethnic, epidemiological and historical nature of man. Hygienists have a conscious realization of cause and effect and it is this that differentiates the Life Scientist from other more traditional practices and beliefs. It is this difference which must be imparted to clients if they are to fulfill their potential destinies as human beings.
We are required to learn man in his entirety, about the symbiosis of his inner parts and his symbiotic relationship with his environment.
It is impossible, of course, to impart to new clients at first, second or even third meeting, all that we know in this regard. Therefore our practice becomes a matter of intelligent selection, choosing the more relevant and discarding that which, for the moment at least, is of lesser importance. Evaluation of need, therefore, is a first priority. In our next lesson we will discuss the initial interview. For now, let us merely state that this first meeting is critical but not all-important. We learn a little more about our clients at each consultation, at group meetings, at potlucks, whenever we are in each other’s presence. All precise information and all impressions must be considered and evaluated for their importance.
Following evaluation of need we must construct a plan of action based on need as is revealed by past history, impressions, etc. A study of possible causes follows. Here one usually discovers a plenitude of possible causes such as the most common cause of overeating; extremely traumatic events in the past or on-going in the present, such as physical cruelty; overworking; psychological trauma such as worry, fear; perhaps assuming too much responsibility in civic affairs; or exercising beyond one’s present capability; eating junk foods; drinking tea, coffee, soft drinks, etc; alcoholism; prior surgical extirpations of organs and parts; and on and on.
An evaluation of the more important causes should precede the construction of a plan of action. We must always be aware of the fact that most people manifest only an elementary knowledge about themselves and are capable only of revealing things they know to be harmful, and this knowledge is limited. They are usually capable of only tackling easy tasks; this is especially true at the beginning.
We generally find that most people are watchers and followers—not instigators, performers, or doers. They are wary, too, of you and of your advice, unless perhaps they have been referred by someone in whom they have explicit trust. This is especially true when ii concerns their physical selves. Most are deficient and sick. They must, therefore, be led and guided, prodded and pushed—but gently. As Alexis Carrel wisely said in Man, The Unknown, “Humanity has never gained anything from the efforts of the crowd. It is driven onward by the passion of a few abnormal individuals, by the flame of their intelligence, by their ideal of science, of charity, and of beauty.” As Hygienists, our knowledge of what to do and how to do it and when must become our passion, our bright flame, so that our knowledge of life’s beauty and its potential as governed by law, can pass over and become a pan of conscious being of those who, because they suffer, seek our help.
Remember that the mental acceptance of Hygienic principles and practices is a wonderful thing that will come through exercise of the mind. Just as bones and muscles develop through physical exercise, so will the mind enlarge and accept new ideas as it is exercised. As each new principle and practice is expounded by you and practiced by the clients, they will advance another step toward their ultimate goal of better health.
The extent of forward progress will depend on the client’s inner discipline which is so often tempered more by peer thinking than by the working of logic. As teachers we must lead clients toward healthier habits of lifestyle by logic, by inspiration and by example, rather than away from bad habits by scolding and lecturing, by imparting to them the wondrous vision of what is possible for them to achieve and to enjoy. We must not express that which must be taken away, but instead tell about that which will be given. Few clients will learn the right way to live and eat solely by lecturing. The desire to know the beauty of life lived in its fullness is that which can attract, guide, and hold.
The greatest desire of humankind is for health and youth. Men and women alike spend their lives and their gold most often in a fruitless search of illusions. It is well known that we wear ourselves out more often than not by our excesses, our lack of moral discipline, our overdoing in so many ways. The science of life is Truth-gold. It is based on the known facts of physiology and anatomy, not on illusions or ideas; on natural and universal law not on mere concepts. It shows us up for what we have been but also opens up the door to what we can become.
Once we have imparted to our clients the secrets of life, we will have taught them how to keep their bodies whole; we will have returned to them their control and have placed them at the steering wheel of life. They will have received knowledge of many of life’s secrets so that for all of life they will be able to keep intact the vigor of their body, its beauty, and the capacity to enlarge their mental sphere.
To accomplish all that we might like to accomplish requires a well-thought-out plan of action. The practitioner should have a general plan which can be modified to fit individual clients’ needs. The plan must address all of the biodynamic requisites of organic existence: how much exercise, precisely what changes are required in feeding, what bad habits must be eliminated immediately, etc. All must be considered and addressed as individual need dictates and as progress is reported from time to time.
Mice kept overlong in cages in close confinement and subject to manifold stresses soon wear out, but when given freedom in larger pens where they can burrow and explore, and when they are fed and fasted appropriately, their life spans are extended in health. So it is with people. When simple Hygienic habits of organic existence become a part of our clients’ thinking and doing, they receive the gift of a knowledge which will favorably influence them for the rest of their extended life spans.
Clients will, of course, experience adjustment difficulties. Some will fall by the wayside and then we must learn to “let go.” We must not waste our energies in futile pursuit but rather expend it in more useful ways and with more receptive people so that greater success will be assured.
Basically then, we must ascertain the facts to the best of our ability, exploring our clients’ knowledge about both the past and the present. Then, we are called upon to formulate a plan of action realizing full well that a plan is just that. It is not a rigid edifice which cannot be changed as need arises. The Hygienist who meets need as it arises with a correct solution will be successful, not only financially, but in having satisfaction in work well done.
It is wise to cultivate both in one’s self and in one’s clients positive attitudes which will yield positive results. Every forward step, every replacement of a bad habit by a positive change in lifestyle is conducive to improvement in the quality of life. We need to impart to our clients the idea that they have the greatest health-building machine ever built and that when they work with it and answer its simple needs, it will provide them with a fulfillment of riches beyond all their fondest dreams.
- 1. Introduction
- 2. The Three Requisites For Change
- 3. Practical Methodology
- 4. Questions & Answers
- Article #1: Faith
- Article #2: Desire Plus the Doing
- Article #3: A House Divided
- Article #4: The Several Doors to Your Personality
- Article #5: Excerpt from “Man, The Unknown” by Alexis Carrel, M.D., Nobel Prize Recipient.
- Article #6: Excerpt from “In Tune with the Infinite” by Ralph Waldo Trine