Before you can achieve what you want, you must know what that is.
It’s surprising how many people are great at complaining about something, but when you ask them what they truly want, they can’t accurately and specifically identify it. You know who I’m talking about. It might be someone you hear repeatedly say, “I have to lose weight.” But that statement is so vague that it’s not surprising that they never actually get around to taking any weight off.
If you really want to achieve something, you must be specific about it. Losing weight, for instance, would be a lot more achievable with a statement such as “I want to weigh 180 pounds by Thanksgiving, and to do that I’m going to do X, Y, and Z.”
The problem is, most people don’t know how to set goals, specifically for their health. Instead, they feel disempowered with their health, which is exactly what the medical-pharmaceutical industrial complex wants you to be.
How do you set a goal when it comes to your back and neck pain? It’s simple.
Goals are things that you want to achieve.
When it comes to your back pain, do you have an aim or desired result? Have you been a passive participant and just done what you were told to do, like a sheep, or have you demonstrated ambition and put in the effort to heal?
Effort refers to the time, energy, and investment to get better. Without those three components, you cannot get better.
So, step one in setting a goal is to write it down.
You must clarify what you really want so that you can reflect on what it takes to get it. Most patients I meet have no goals for their health, let alone written ones. As you write down your goals, I think you will be amazed to see that the vast majority of them deal not with feeling better, but with being able to do things again.
From these goals, you can develop a plan.
Most plans to treat patients for neck and back pain are based on the wrong things, like insurance coverage or quick fixes. In our clinic, a plan involves all the treatment therapies necessary, including those provided by other health care professionals, like physical therapists and massage therapists. Different modalities treat different parts of the back pain.
One of the great things about having a plan is that it lets you see how the pieces of the puzzle fit together. It allows you to feel good that you have a system to follow, and it allows you to have more faith because what you write down makes so much sense.
Many times, patients will hop from provider to provider. Because they didn’t get a complete recovery, or the pain returned, they concluded that the therapy didn’t work, when in reality it was the plan that didn’t work. They didn’t have a plan to simultaneously treat all the parts of their back pain.
They’ve spent decades damaging their back, but they expect a cure in two weeks.
If you want to feel better, you have to set out your vision and stick to the plan.
That’s why I say establish and write down goals, develop a plan and stick to the plan. The patients we’ve seen who have done this have experienced significant relief from pain and an increase in their quality of life.