When new graduates come and observe in one of our clinics they often ask if we have any advice for them. This is a great question that forward thinking students ask.
The single, most important thing we recommend once you graduate is to find a job where they will help you learn your trade and develop both personally and professionally.
You have spent up to five years at university doing a very advanced academic course, you have passed all your exams, you have a piece of paper saying you are qualified, and you may even have letters after your name.
Now, you need to go out into the real world to learn how to be a proper Chiropractor.
You don’t need to do lots of fancy CPD courses. That won’t do it.
It’s not about how many certificates you have on the wall. You need to focus on the key things and spend the early years of your career learning your craft.
The jump from zero experience to 12 months is huge. The jump from one year to three years is big. After that, the difference is not so great. Your progress largely depends on those early years, in particular, the first 12 months. Once you do that, you will be set for life.
For example, you join a band to play guitar…
You couldn’t play it very well, but it didn’t matter. You thought you would pick it up as you went along. At the beginning you play to small crowds, it’s easy. Then things start taking off and you do bigger gigs.
Finally, you’re getting some real traction and things get even bigger. But disaster strikes. You never really put in the time learning to play your instrument, and once the pressure is on, you crumble. This is not a good look on stage in front of all those people. This is all because you don’t have ownership of what you are supposed to do. You were never taught the right way to play, and you never put in the work.
When we think about what’s at stake for patients, being a Chiropractor is at a far greater magnitude. You may be the difference between them having a healthy life, and them being practically disabled.
You really owe it to your patients, and yourself, to be the best Chiropractor you can be.
Our advice to you…
- Get clear on your chiropractic philosophy (In our opinion, chiropractic philosophy underpins everything you do).
- Learn how to become a masterful adjuster.
- Get training on how to deal with people.
- Do all this in a place that supports you and builds your confidence.
You should be filled with passion for what you do. Nobody notices lukewarm, but they will notice scalding hot. You should push hard for this. If you are not excited about being a Chiropractor, you are not pushing hard enough.
Once you get your philosophy right, everything else will start to make sense.
It sounds obvious, but you’d be surprised by how many Chiropractors with years of experience who haven’t done the work. Now, they’re left feeling frustrated. They have limited success, they become stuck, and they don’t enjoy what they do.
This is such a shame because you are joining the best profession in the world.
Willow & Coaching
It’s one of the reasons why Willow is big on coaching. Our motto is train hard and focus. We make growth and learning a priority from day one. Everyone does an intensive coaching course before seeing patients. This is a minimum of two months for new graduates.
It’s not easy, doing it right is hard. But, doing it over is harder.
Marc Hudson and Lynn McAvenia are part of our Willow coaching team. Every year, the team go to the mountains of Mallorca for the Vital Experience Workshop. This involves massive amounts of self-development work, a sweat lodge, a fire walk, and much more.
Spoiler alert: it’s intense.
Not only this, but each year everyone goes to Malaga for ChiroEurope, the premier conference for Chiropractors in Europe.
People go to chiropractic school because they want to help people. They want to make a difference, have an impact, and use their hands to provide natural health care. But, to reach dreams, everyone needs some support, mentoring, and guidance.
So, after graduation, focus first on the important things. Get that right and everything else will fall into place.
Always remember: every artist, sportsperson, and performer have ownership of what they do, and so should you.
If you want some great things to consider before you graduate, let us know when you come to visit, and we will tell you what.