We teach courses for medical practitioners (acupuncturists, physical therapists, nurses, and doctors) on non-verbal, or rather, mostly unconscious, communication. In our seminars, we talk about the stuff we're always communicating but rarely saying.
I'm guessing that most of you are already pretty good communicators. You have a practice going, you get on well with others, you're pretty socially comfortable. And I'm also going to postulate that, if I were to ask you what specifically made you a good communicator, you would explain to me in many words how you do it.
So what if I asked you to spend 5 minutes explaining how you establish communication with your patients, and you could use words for only 30 seconds of that 5 minutes. How would you do it? Beyond the words, you would basically just have movement and non-word sounds to use. You'd have to use meaningful movement, perhaps like a modern dance piece, or a silent film.
Don't worry-we're not going to ask you to do a mime show, or express yourself in movement. That would be redundant. Because, as it turns out, you're already doing that, right here and now, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can't not communicate. Your thoughts, your intentions, your joys, your sorrows-whatever is on your mind is also on your body, whether you are aware of it or not. Each one of us is an ongoing modern dance performance where, according to a preponderance of research, we are expressing only 7% of ourselves with our words. The other 93% is coming through our movement, facial expressions, vocal tone and pitch, and a bunch of other ancient and unconscious non-verbal cues. This according to famous research by UCLA Psychology Professor Albert Mehrabian.
So what does this all mean? Well, one thing it means is that we're largely unconsciously expressing up to 93% of what we're actually saying. If you're running your practice, and your life, wholly dependent upon that remaining 7%, you're missing out on a lot. If you're doing well enough now consciously expressing only 7% of what you mean, just imagine how effective you could be if you could amp that up a bit.
In our classes, we intend to help make conscious for you some of that remaining 93%. And in the process, our experience is that the mastery of your communication can go a long way to dramatically improving your medical practice, and your life.
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