How Baseball Can Teach Acupuncturists How to Succeed



…in baseball, um, a batter gets up and he asked to swing, right, swing, batter, batter, batter, swing. Right? And I think in life in general, um, we can stand up at the plate and some people can make it look so simple. Some people will see, um, and we see that they have success and we’re seeing their home runs.

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I want to thank the American Acupuncture Council again for having me host, um, to the point and, um, our unusually hosting on practice management, success ideas with integrity, for an acupuncturist, a brief introduction of who I am. My name’s Lorne Brown. I’m a doctor of traditional Chinese medicine. Um, I have a clinic in Vancouver, BC, Canada, [inaudible] wellness center. Most of the founder of healthy seminars. It used to be known way back when as Pro D seminars now known as Healthy Seminars. Um, and I’m also the chair of the Integrated Fertility Symposium and the author of this book Missing the  Point, Why Acupuncturists Fail and What They Need to Know to Succeed. And I’m also a CPA, a certified professional accountant. Um, the topic today that I wanted to share with you is, um, how baseball can teach acupuncturists, how to succeed. And I was thinking about it in my own personal experience.

Um, and in, in baseball, um, a batter gets up and he asked to swing, right, swing, batter, batter, batter, swing. Right? And I think in life in general, um, we can stand up at the plate and some people can make it look so simple. Some people will see, um, and we see that they have success and we’re seeing their home runs. And I often get accused of that. Myself. Some of my peers, colleagues say, life is simple for you. Like things always work out for you. And what I am aware of is that they don’t know about all the misses, all the strike outside of that. My, I do swing a lot. Um, and just like in baseball, like, uh, like, uh, a player from the, the, uh, in history, a record maker, babe Ruth, um, he’s famous for his home runs. Um, but what people don’t realize is people like babe Ruth, Hank, Aaron, all these home run giants also struck out a lot.

Um, but we tend to remember their home runs. And if you don’t swing and you don’t risk missing, then you don’t get that home run. And when you’re at bat or in life, when you have an idea, the thing that can interfere with it is our fear. And the other thing that some of my friends and colleagues say is, you’re lucky Lauren, because you got all this courage. You can just go, go do these things. You don’t, you’re not afraid. And I realized that, um, maybe I make things and other people who are having success may make things look simple. Um, but it’s not always as easy as that. And so I kind of wanted to share with you this baseball analogy and to share with you kind of my epiphany and what happened to me and, uh, and that anybody can do this and start to live and manifest the dreams and desires they have.

So the first thing is, many of you have heard that courage is not the absence of fear. And so when you’re standing at, you know, back to our baseball analogy, you’re standing up at bat, I’m ready to swing. Um, there can be a lot of fear there. You know, you could be afraid to swing cause you don’t want to strike, Oh, you don’t wanna miss the ball and look silly. You got all these fans, you got your teammates, you got, um, um, the coaches there. So sometimes fear can cause us to freeze, um, or avoid swinging the bat. And so in life, it’s the fear that prevents us from moving forward with something that we really want to do. That’s in our heart desire, a fear of failure out of fear of ridicule, out of fear that it may upset others. And then they won’t like us.

And so I want to share with you that, um, all people, myself included have fear, and the difference is just like you, we went our pants, but we move forward and continue to do the activities just with wet pants. And so it’s important to know that it’s not, if there’s not no such thing as absence of fear here, there is the fear, and this is what brings up the courage. It’s if you don’t have the fear, there is no curse. So there’s gotta be this curve, something that comes up from you and from my Chinese medicine colleagues here, we understand that Azure and, and the Chinese Shen system, how this is part of your will your courage. So there’s things that you can do probably early in acupuncture to support that I’m going to talk mostly about mindset and some of my real life experiences.

And so I didn’t pithany I had is when I first did my first integrated fertility symposium. So we did it for five years in person. And, um, and then our first year, um, doing it online was in 2021. And so to share with you what happened to me back in 2015 when I had my first, um, epiphany on courage is not the absence of fear. And then this formula to move through the fear, to develop the courage, to move through, to have your heart’s desires be manifested was as follows. So in 2015, I was asked to put on a conference in Vancouver, it was going to be related to fertility. My, uh, my friend who has passed since then, Ray Rubio, wanting to, um, a conference for his AB or I’m exam. You wanted to host the exam outside of the United States. He kind of wanted a destination experience and he wanted to have a conference built around it.

And so we had this discussion in the, and I was running healthy seminars, known as pro Decembers back then. And the idea was, I’ll build a conference and they’ll host an exam on one of the days, but we’ll build a conference around that. And it would be now you got to think of the, um, of what was happening in that time was 2015. Um, online was becoming popular and a lot of conferences in the States were struggling. They didn’t have a lot of, and so the idea of taking a conference, um, with the focus for the American acupuncturist and putting it in another country and then making the theme on infertility. So rather than attracting as many people as you can with multiple, um, topics, we just had fertility as our topic was a risky venture, right? Lots of reason for fear and doubt. And what ended up happening is, um, at one point, Ray said, how are things looking, um, in the planning process?

And I said, look, let me get back to you. I’m going to run some numbers. And so this is about, um, nine months, 10 months before the date that he wanted us to do it in Vancouver. I said, yes, we would do it. And then I finally looked at my numbers and wow, the way I wanted to do it, cause I wanted to do it. What I would call, right. I wanted to do it well. I wanted to do it different. The first time we did the numbers, um, and my wife works with, um, healthy seminars. Um, the budget was crazy. It was too risky. So risky that if it didn’t work, we would probably have to sell her home downsides. It was too risky, the way I wanted to do it. So she said, what are you gonna say to Ray? Ray’s my good friend.

I said, I’m going to tell him I’m not gonna do this. This is too risky. So I call up Ray and I said, Ray, look, I looked at the numbers and I gotta tell ya, I can’t do the ifs in Vancouver, um, is just too risky. And his response was, Hey, we already told people we were, we were doing this. Um, and we already have our board who, who purchased plane tickets to come to Vancouver, that date, you need to do this. And I wanted to be a man of my word. So I took a deep breath, a lot of fear, but the curse started to come up and I said, we’re doing it. I agreed. And when I got off the phone later that day, my wife asked me how to re handle it. And I said, interesting, you should ask, um, we’re doing the conference.

And she said, you gotta be crazy. You said, we’re going to have to sell our home and downsize. Um, and I responded, I only said that if it didn’t work, it’s not like nobody will show up. Now here’s the epiphany. Once I decided we’re doing this, I committed. We call the hotel where we wanted to do it. The, it wasn’t actually a hotel, but a hotel for the guest and then the location to have the conference. And we put our deposit down. Now I’ve made a commitment. Now the courage. So basically, first of all, you have some fear and this fear creates courage. You need the courage. I was afraid I was going to fail, have to sell my home, but I’ve committed. I now know I’m doing this. So the first key in this process to manifestation and moving through fear is yes, you got to bring up the courage, right?

You got to be able to will willingly swing knowing that you may strike out. So you got to go for the ball. And then this courage leads to commitment. The commitment was, I had the courage to put a deposit down on the hotel, put a deposit down on a location and start to learn and figure out how I’m going to put this conference, um, on the ground. So the first thing is the commitment is key. You gotta have a date. You got to sign some papers, signs, and contracts with speakers. Now you’re committed. You’re in this. There is no retreat. There is no, I’m not going to do this. Like I tried to do with Ray on the phone. Cause I wasn’t really committed. Then I said, yes, I’ll do it. It was more of a want desire. But now I’m at the bat with a whole bunch of fans in the stands.

And I, and I pitchers ready to throw a ball at me and people are waiting on me to swing, to hit that ball. So commitments, the first step, once you really commit it’s public, you told people you’re doing this. You start to accept registration, you’re paying vendors and suppliers. So you can run something in this case. Right? So the commitment, so then sort of the commitment creates the courage. I said it backwards, by the way, it’s you have the fear you decide to do it. That’s the commitment. The first thing, the commitment creates the courage because now that I’m doing this, I can’t retreat. So now I have to find the courage. And then what I found as I learned about putting on a big conference and refining out a company and finding out about food and all the things we want to do, the pricing we learned, like it was a, um, a lot of energy, a lot of work and fun and stress by the way.

But that developed capability by learning and actually figuring out how to do this. And by the way, the fear comes about, because I actually did not have the confidence or the capability when I said yes to doing this conference. Remember I hadn’t done a big conference before. So there’s where the fear is. I had no confidence. I had no skills that I was aware of to do this. So I made the commitment first and I had enough time from commitment day. Yes, I’m doing this too. When I had an execute to develop those capabilities, those skills, those know how. And so I made the commitment, that commitment creates courage. That courage creates capability. Cause I learned how to do this. And then the conference actually sold out. It was amazing. I would say that I go to conferences all the time, if we want to my favorite conferences.

And uh, I heard great feedback and we sold out five years in a row after that. And so that first capability, once I knew how to do it, and we saw at work gave me confidence. When I finally swaying at the ball there hit the home run that gives you more confidence to swing at the pitch. The next time it comes now, actually I’m in a another, um, process, but now I’ve done this so many times. Um, I have fear make the commitment. The commitment creates the courage. The courage creates the capability because you figure out how to do it. And then the capability creates the confidence and the confidence gives you more ideas to do more commitment. And the process is just a continuation. It’s kind of like the shin coups cycle, right? Each one creates the other and then it’s just repeats. And so in 2021 ish, we decided to run our ifs online.

Now I had no knee or desire to do my conference online because we run healthy seminars. We already run online content. There was no need to put content online. We already do it. We were doing it all through 2020 and 21 during that time period for those that remember COVID and isolation and shutdowns, but we had a different dream and idea. We wanted to inspire the public to seek out, um, acupuncturist for integrated reproductive care. And back in the day when Fowchee was, um, talking about we’re going to follow the science when he was talking about the COVID virus and Trump had just said, um, drink bleach or sit out in the sun to kill the virus. And Fowchee says, no, we’re going to follow science. I heard this was my interpretation. I heard Fowchee say, when we’re going to follow the science is that science is synonymous with pharmaceutical research.

And it was just the, the impression I got. And I saw this as something that could be negatively impact, um, uh, non-pharmaceutical therapies and research. Um, and there’d be a bias for that. And so I got this inspiration to create a conference, but my intention actually was for this was to have public education as part of it. So I got all the speakers to create public educational lectures. Um, 10, 20 minute short lectures that the participants at the ifs could share with the public to then inspire them, to seek them out for integrative care. And the way envision is the speaker does a professional talk for the CU and PDAs and us, the acupuncturist get excited and we can do this in our clinic, but we may not be able to articulate it like that speaker. Um, and so having that speaker share why the public can benefit from what we do, um, may support us.

These are assets that we could share on our websites and our social media. And a lot of the speakers are both MD and TCM trained, not weekend acupuncture, train. I mean, they’ve done MD training and they’ve done the full TCM training like you. And so we have a good four or five of our speakers that are actually IVF doctors. So MD, OB GYN, IVs specialists, and TCM acupuncture, herbalist trained. And they sh so th th them giving these public education videos adds the credibility, um, to the information to sharing, and then people would seek us out for integrative care. So that was the idea behind why I want to do the ifs online. And, um, we had a whole different format. It wasn’t over a weekend like everybody was doing it’s over two months. Um, uh, as I said, we had, we wanted people to share these educational videos.

We created chat. We did all, we did it very different. We did something that hasn’t been done as of, as of yet, at that time online for digital conferences, we made it two months. We had a lot of forums and chat features so we can interact. The sponsors had to create educational content, a lot of new stuff. And so it was another one of those experiences. I don’t have anybody to copy to follow from right. To learn from and what happens if they don’t like it? Um, what happens if it doesn’t work? And I had a focus on my intention, my, the reason doing it. So the reason I really wanted to do this was to have public education videos and get them in the hands of my peers and have them share this on their website and social media to educate, inspire the public, to seek us out for integrative care.

So that became my focus. That was my desire. And we started to build this website. Um, so I started selling tickets May 1st. It was going to open up in 2021. That was the idea here. And, um, we started selling tickets before the website was built. Luckily, we got everything else done by the end of February of that year. But to let you know, I had started selling tickets. I, people were committing to this online conference and we even have the website built yet. And I worked with my tech team. They thought it was at one point, they told me in early of April, that that date, uh, May 1st was impossible. And I said, well, I’m glad you agree with me. That May 1st is not the right date. Cause I wanted to actually April 25th. And so they work longer hours. I work longer hours and we figured it out.

So we went from, we had fear and we could, there was a lot of uncertainty. There’s a lot of unknown. And then from fear, we made a commitment. We’re doing this. And I contracted speakers are recorded. Their public talks and their professional talks. And we started building a website, but we at least started selling tickets. And that commitment, I mean, that was a serious commitment. Gave us, creates the, um, the courage. So now we had to do this. Then we got the capability because the site function and it worked, and then you get the confidence. So this is that swing batter, swing. Now I’ll share with you in that conference. We, you know, we had similar registration, like we would in person, but we learned so many things. So many things that we thought would happen did not, but this is all part of learning process.

There is no failure. There’s just learning. And you create something, you go up to the bat and you get ready to swing. You prepare. Um, but at the end you there’s that uncertain. You don’t know. So I will summarize that. You want to focus on the end result. Why are you doing this? And if you’re doing it, that could be one of your reasons money. But I find that as one of the least motivational ones, if it’s, and yes, money can be part of it, always, you know, for me, we have all these goals that we want to do and then can it, can it be profitable, right? But we have hierarchy. And money’s usually at the lower end of other goals we have, um, when we do our projects. So a few other things that I wanted to share with this idea that nice guys finish last.

I want to share with you that nice guys and gals can finish first. And then this idea that you have to be a bull in a China shop, you have to be a mean-spirited person. You have to be ruthless to be successful. So is a myth why they may be interpreted as, um, not very nice people. These people that are successful is that they’re more interested in achieving their goals, their visions than they are on popular opinion. And so you may not understand what they’re doing, but they have a dream, a desire, and nothing’s going to stop them from that. And so if you don’t agree and you express your disagreement and you think your argument is so good, that when they hear it, they should drop their desires and dreams and change course. And they don’t, you are interpreting them as not nice and mean-spirited, but they’re just so focused on their goal that whether you like them or not is not important enough.

I will share from my experience and talking to other people that have made great dents in the universe that are influencers that are considered successful. They want people to like them. It hurts when people are angry and don’t like them. They just care much more about what they’re trying to achieve than they do about other people’s opinions. And that’s why they end up being successful because so many people have these great ideas and they start with them and then people come in and try and give you their doubt, their fare fears, and many of us then stop overdoing an example in our profession, when community acupuncture, um, started to, um, come out, uh, many, many moons ago, there was a opposition by a lot of people saying it’s not good, Chinese medicine acupuncture. You can’t go do a good diagnosis in a short period of time, blow whatever the reasons were.

And the people of community acupuncture had a dream to get acupuncture to the masses at a, at a, at a lower rate. And whether you liked it or not was not enough for them to stop. But a lot of people did not like the founders of this movement, but they had a dream, a desire, and your opinion to them was not enough for them to stop. And so that comes down to the last point is ignore the naysayers because people are going to have their ideas, their fears, and they’re going to try and create doubt. When I wanted to do the ifs conference again, what was the naysayers or doubts? Hey, you’re crazy to do this in Vancouver and American conference in Vancouver, Canada, the conferences in the States aren’t well attended. How do you expect people to get on planes or get passports and come to you?

Right? Hey, we can’t fill our conferences and we have multiple topics and yours is just on reproductive health. This isn’t gonna work. And so, um, those are the naysayers. So to be successful when you get up at the bat, swing batter, batter, batter, swing, batter, batter, batter. I want to remind you or summarize a few things. One is, um, ignore the naysayers, ignore the people, yelling at you in the stands, ignore them to stay focused on the prize. Know what you want, get clear on what you want and focus on that. And then remember if you feel fear and you feel uncomfortable, that is considered normal. Um, um, we don’t like to feel uncomfortable and fear is uncomfortable. If you can commit to something because you have a dream and then you commit to doing it, you say it publicly, you, you, you put your deposits down.

That commitment creates the courage. And so until you commit, if you haven’t officially committed, it’s very easy to withdraw. And step back, once you commit that creates the courage and the once you have the courage and you know, you have a, a deadline, a date that courage allows you to seek out counsel, take courses, ask for help, hire consultants, hire special skill people to build the product or service that you want. And then when you get that capability, those skillset that gives you confidence. And then that confidence becomes a vicious cycle and you find something new to commit to. And when you, when you do this from the baseball analogy, when you’re ignoring the naysayers and you’re focused on what you want, you’re focused on, you see the home run. All of a sudden that courage comes up because you’ve committed your ad bag. You decided to go up to the bat.

And for whatever reason, sometimes it seems like that ball gets a little bigger or maybe even slows down a bit for like the baby Bruce. And they hit a lot of home runs every time they swing, even when they missed in their mind, they thought they were hitting that ball over the fence. And so that is the process. So I hope this was of interest to you. Uh, one more little, let you know, if you’re interested in my book, let me know, missing a book. I have stories like this and other ideas that I consider simple, powerful, and effective for growing your practice with integrity. I want to let you know that next week Chen Yen will be on, um, To The Point. And if you have questions for me, feel free to post those in the chat. And, um, if you’re looking for connecting with me on any other way, there’s my website athealthyseminars.com. I wish you success and take best care.