Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Thoughts on reading The Emperor of All Maladies: a Biography of Cancer

As a holistic practitioner, if you want to help people try to prevent cancer, or to support their physical and emotional well-being while facing it, this book offers an overview of the medical world's view of the phenomenon. Not a complete history or a medical textbook, it reads more like a historical novel, delivering a timeline of discovery over the centuries.
Siddhartha Mukherjee, a cancer physician and researcher, writes about Sidney Farber, the pioneer of modern chemotherapy, who recognized that cancer was an illness that required many approaches – physical, social, and emotional. He added social workers, psychiatrists and nutritionists to his team. I would propose that patients could also benefit from a gentle army of holistic practitioners of their choosing. Imagine adding acupuncture, homeopathy, Reiki, yoga and more to a healing program.

The author emphasizes how varied the behavior of different types of cancer is. Lung cancer often spreads to the brain; pancreatic cancer to the bones and liver. But Hodgkin’s lymphoma moves from one gland to the next one, growing locally, lending itself to local treatment. That is why Hodgkin’s is one of the few diseases that respond well to chemotherapy, along with acute lymphoblastic leukemia and testicular cancer. Historically, researchers have sought one cure for cancer, but over time, it is realized that cancer is not one disease, but a wide spectrum of conditions. The medical world has developed treatments, but ones that do not often result in long term cures.
As holistic professionals, reading this book you will readily see how big of a need there is to fill. People need help increasing their immune function, improving their overall health, and learning how to cope with stress. These are important elements in preventing cancer and in complementing medical treatments, as surgery, radiation and chemo are hard on the immune system and the psyche. The book, like the medical community, focuses mostly on surgical and chemical approaches to cancer. A small fraction of research dollars is allocated to studying the role of diet. Holistically-minded people are more inclined to think that a “cure” for cancer is not going to be found in a new drug. After all, cancer is not the result of a deficiency of drugs.
One fascinating chapter examines the history of mammography. Metastasis is what kills patients with breast cancer, the author explains, so the ability to detect and remove premetastatic tumors can be lifesaving.  However, the author says, “Just because a breast tumor is small does not mean that it is premetastatic. Even relatively small tumors barely detectable by mammography can carry genetic programs that make them vastly more likely to metastasize early. Conversely, large tumors may inherently be genetically benign – unlikely to invade and metastasize….” (p. 303).
The role of genetic mutations in the cancer process is explained. It is amazing to read about how many steps the mutations go through.The medical research world’s focus is getting smaller and smaller, encouraged by advances in drugs targeted at mutated genes. But in manipulating at the microscopic level, has research lost sight of the big picture? There are natural ways to balance hormones, encourage cell differentiation, and increase macrophages that eat cancer cells. Stress is clearly identified as one cause of cancer. Can stress be antidoted by gene-targeted drugs? Is the concept of a healthy mind and body such a mystery?  It may be a challenge, one that holistically minded people may be able to help others meet.
Mukherjee’s work is beautifully and sensitively written. If you want to better understand the allopathic world of cancer, I know of no better book on the subject.
Note: My thanks to Susan Silberstein, PhD and Randi Shayne, ND at the Center for the Advancement of Cancer Education. Their insights gained from counseling over 30,000 families facing cancer gave me more perspective on this work.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Book Yourself Solid - Michael Port's gem of a book

If you are responsible for building your own clientele and crave some structure and guidance, this book is such a help. Whether you are a new entrepreneur or have been beating your head against a wall for some time, his strategic outlines for networking, referrals, websites, direct outreach and more have something for everyone. He understands the small business owner and has worked with many holistic practitoners to help them book their schedules to capacity.

I've been recommending this book to friends and colleagues for a long time - people still thank me years later.

The author will send you the first four chapters of this book for free if you would like to receive his oh-so-helpful newsletter. See his site:  I met him at one of his many inspiring speaking engagements. He is a genuine person with insights and experience to point the small business owner in the right direction.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Results of Holistic Professionals survey

Thanks to those of you who participated in the first survey I sent out. Please let me know who won the gift card !  I want to make sure Survey Monkey passes it along from me to the winner.

Most of the respondents want to connect with other holistic practitioners (I encourage doing this for so many reasons).
57% want to learn more about how to promote their holistic business
50% want to learn how to increase the number of visitors to their website and increase conversion rates of those visits into some kind of action
50% are experiencing information overload / 50% are not
About 30% want tips on preventing burnout
Top ways new clients find the respondents: 84%  by word of mouth. Internet search, social media, and public speaking were the next most effective methods, in that order.
64% are not sure if their intended audience is aware of their existence
  • 92% have a Facebook presence
  • 75% are on LinkedIN
  • 45% are on Twitter
Half of the respondents want to learn how to optimize use of social media
The respondents slightly prefer webinars over teleseminars, and most prefer in person classes over any other kind
58% of the respondents want to be interviewed. Please contact me directly about that, as I don’t know who wanted to!  I’ve been doing some great interviews so far. I don’t know if I’ll be able to accommodate everyone, but send me an email!
I will be offering some webinars and more to help address some of these needs, as I’ve been immersing myself in learning this stuff. The first one will be the Top Ways for Holistic Professionals to Reach New Clients.  Stay tuned…
Thanks again and have a wonderful weekend !

Thursday, March 31, 2011

A must read for business owners

What an entertaining, applicable, insightful work by Scott Stratten, social media expert. Stratten's take in Unmarketing is so refreshing. If you want to learn how to improve your use of Facebook, Twitter, video, newsletters, teleseminars - better yet - if you want to learn how to engage your clientele and and develop relationships with potential customers, this has got to be on your reading list. I put it in the Top Five among books on social media. And my Top Five list of books about business in general. No wonder this guy is asked to speak all around the world. He's shaking it up.
I think holistic practitioners will relate to his style and resonate with his philosophy about relating to people first. He's jaded, but in a good way. If you know what Klondike ice cream bars are, Scott may remind you of them - crunchy and seemingly hardened on the outside, sweet and melting on the inside. Scott completely opened my mind to the potential of Twitter and the goodness therein.
Highly recommended. Feel free to leave comments about it here and recommend your favorite business books.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

ZPoint Session with John Soriano

My thanks to John Soriano, who recorded a complimentary ZPoint session to help holistic practitioners remove their internal blocks to marketing and promoting their services. It is so interesting how this approach covers all the different ways we can hold on to a belief that is not serving us or allowing us to better serve others. Click on the link above to hear this session (running time 23 minutes).

John has a Bachelor's degree in Psychology and a Masters in Education. He is a certified ZPoint coach and practitioner, an advanced practitioner of EFT (Emotional Freedeom Techniques), and a Reiki Master. He is a member of the Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology and the Association for the Advancement of Meridian Energy Techniques. For more information about John, see

I am always happy to hear about the students he helps to overcome their blocks to math and other subjects in school. There's so much to learn and to unlearn.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Eyes of the World on Japan

Some important forms of holistic healing originated in Japan, such as Reiki and Jin Shin Jyutsu. Holistic practitioners in every field wish they could do more to help, along with the rest of the world.  It is touching to see how the Japanese people as a whole respond to crisis.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Inspiration from chiropractic coaching team Drs. Dean and Jen DePice

I was privileged to attend a regional seminar led by the DePices in Princeton, New Jersey. It was great to interview them later and hear more about their mindset on serving others and reaching more clients in your health and wellness practice. This is worth listening to twice. I love the insights on the keys to using social media.