Almost exactly two years ago, I fell on some ice while walking our dog and hurt my ankle.
I spent the day on the couch with my ice pack – you know the drill. Twenty minutes on. Twenty minutes off.
And, after that, I went on with life.
Now. Fast forward to about this time last year.
My right leg ached so much. It was becoming more and more of an issue, making it difficult for me to even walk the dog.
And, something was wrong with my ankle. It was like it was always out of place.
So, I told my chiropractor. She’d adjust my ankle during my visit and I’d get some temporary relief.
I kept mentioning it, and asked her why? You guessed it. It all stemmed from that fall I had.
After a few months of the same process, I asked her why my leg ached. Because now my hip ached too.
She explained that I had a weak ankle, and my calf muscle was working extra hard to compensate.
So, I asked my massage therapist to start paying more attention to my calf muscle. And sure enough, she could find those tight muscles and release them. But again, I’d only get temporary relief.
At my osteopath appointments, I’d also complain about my ankle and my calf/hip issues. And he would also work his magic and put my ankle back in place – and that would be great – until it popped out again. More temporary relief.
As you can see, I had a lot of professionals working on me.
But, I wasn’t really getting better.
It still hurt to walk any great distance, let alone exercise.
And it was impacting my quality of life.
In December, I saw my naturopath and shared my frustration with her. I had seen three competent practitioners who understood why I was having the problem and were treating it. But ultimately, they didn’t help me SOLVE the problem.
She looked at me and said, “Mary, you need to see a physiotherapist.”
THE RIGHT SOLUTION GETS YOU THE RESULT YOU WANT
Since the middle of January, I’ve been going to physiotherapy, and I am very happy with the results.
Not only does my physiotherapist understand WHY I have these issues, she knows exactly WHAT each one of us needs to do to make things better.
It’s her job to help me heal an old injury, as best as we can. She has a treatment plan for me. And we’re implementing it together!
For the past 6 weeks, I’ve been wearing a brace to support my ankle, which helps take the pressure off my calf muscles.
At the same time, I do daily exercises to strengthen my ankle, so my leg will no longer have to compensate (and my hip won’t hurt any more either.)
And the physiotherapist works to release my muscles, uses ultrasound to help with the healing, and monitors my progress.
It’s going well, and we’re moving on to the next stage of the plan.
HOW THIS APPLIES TO YOUR BUSINESS
I wanted to share this story with you because it illustrates the cost of operating on autopilot. I just kept booking appointments without thinking there was any other option.
It shows how long I was willing to tolerate my discomfort and the ineffectiveness of the treatment I sought.
I hope you can also see that once you are ready to create a change, understanding the why of a problem is important. But it’s only one part of the equation.
And, finally, the story highlights the importance of choosing the best solution to resolve your problem or issue. I needed to work with someone whose job it was to create and carry out a treatment plan.
QUESTIONS TO ASK
Here are some questions you can ask yourself.
Where in your business (life) are you on autopilot (meaning you do something over and over again without giving it any thought)? Is there a cost to that? What is it?
Where in your business (life) are you tolerating discomfort or ineffectiveness? What keeps you in this place?
When you’ve identified an issue or problem you have in your business (life), you can then ask:
Do you understand why it’s happening?
If the answer is no or some version of no, it’s safe to say that you need some help to “diagnose” what the problem actually is.
If the answer is yes, how ready are you to solve it (on a scale of 1 to 10, where 10 is totally ready and 1 is not at all)?
If the answer is between 1 and 6, you’re probably not ready.
If the answer is 7, 8, 9 or 10, consider what kind of solution will help you resolve the problem. In other words:
Do you need to learn a new skill, come up with a strategy, create a system, put some structure in place, or ask for support? (I’ll write more about these in the upcoming weeks)
And then, and only then you can ask:
What kind of professionals offer that kind of solution?
And within that profession, who is the best person/provider to deliver that solution?