Here are three more techniques or ideas you can use in your practice to help you help other people:

1) Find The Deficiency First. All adverse human health events and conditions are really the result of deficiency of some sort. As the saying goes “nature abhors a vacuum”; so find and fill that vacuum. Find out what is missing and then work with the individual to fill in the rest of the gaps.

In most cases, a person who is experiencing adverse health is really just experiencing a nutrient deficiency. And in most of those cases, the missing nutrient is Vitamin C. Human beings cannot make this absolutely vital nutrient that almost all mammals make and that all higher plants make. Correcting this deficiency can go a long way to helping someone achieve better outcomes and a better life.

The other nutrient that is commonly deficient is Vitamin B3, also called Niacin. This nutrient is supposed to be made in abundance by the human body, but due to certain circumstances (such as not being able to make Vitamin C) humans are terrible converters of this nutrient. According to the Pauling Institute, Niacin is converted from the amino acid tryptophan, but it requires 50-60mg of tryptophan to make 1 mg of B3. Not very efficient at all! Supplementing with B3 in the form of Niacinamide can be of tremendous help, especially those with anxiety, energy issues, or anything dealing with mind or brain health.

One of the easiest ways of finding nutrient deficiency in someone’s diet is the food diary. Simply have your patients take a food journal of what they eat every day, and look at the foods they eat and their nutrient content. It is pretty easy to figure out that a person who doesn’t eat any vegetables is going to be devoid of many important vitamins and minerals, or how little protein they may be intaking by simply looking at what they eat.

There are other types of deficiency to explore, such as sleep deficiency, or water deficiency, or touch deficiency, or even “good home cooked food” deficiency! Explore what is missing and fix it, and watch your outcomes improve dramatically. When someone is in poor health it is often the result of one or two things missing from their life and/or their chemistry.

And if you want to go the route of using lab testing to find “hidden” or not-so-obvious nutrient deficiencies, then try out Rupa Health. They have a ton of interesting lab tests you can learn to use in order to ascertain suspected nutrient deficiencies or to corroborate your assessments.

2) Small, gradual changes instead of big drastic changes. As practitioners, we tend to want to make these big sweeping changes to achieve rapid results: “Eat this diet, stop eating that, get more exercise right now!”

And we see after the fact that very often these sorts of dramatic, immediate changes either don’t work or don’t last. This is especially true with diet and food. One of the most traumatic things for a person, at least from a psychological level but even on a physiological level, is to rapidly change one’s diet. Altering one’s food in a dramatic shift can cause tremendous stress, while almost always resulting in even worse disordered eating. Most people will fight to the end so they can keep eating the way they are currently eating, even if they know it is bad for them

We have to remember that this is a marathon, not a sprint, and that “slow and steady wins the race”. We want to make slow, gradual changes that come with full enrollment and investment of the patient or client. They have to make the changes and have to want to make the choices.

One way you can do this is by asking them “what are some foods that you think you should eat or would like to try that you’ve never had before?” Discuss your favorite ways of cooking that food or foods and ask them how they’d prepare it. Create dialog around these things. The same with ideas like exercise. Getting someone to exercise 5 days a week that is currently exercising zero days a week is a recipe for disappointment. Start low, go slow. Getting them to do some nurturing exercise one day a week is a great start and you can build off of that. This also applies with sleeping. Start by encouraging getting to bed half an hour earlier and work from there until we get to around 8 hours a night, or whatever is a comfortable amount.

You are not in any hurry. Make small changes, take small steps, and be consistent. Consistency of activity leads to consistency of results.

3) Hold the mirror up to the person and ask them what they see. Ask your people what they want to achieve, and then ask them what are three things they could be doing that they are not currently doing that can help them achieve their goals. You’d be surprised at what the response it.

Most people inherently know deep down inside what they need to be doing to accomplish what they want. There is a sort of disconnect between that “gut feeling” and what we believe we can do, so we need to bring that feeling out into the open and shine a light on it. Simply talking about it or writing it down can be the “boost” needed to get it to manifest into reality.

Some people need “permission” to do what they know they need to do, or simply need some encouragement because they had negative experiences or perhaps even some abuse. Whatever the reason, if you can draw out of them what they know they need to do, and get them to verbalize it in some way, then they will start working on it immediately, and good results will follow. Plus, they will be far more compliant because it was something they themselves came up with, and all you did was gently help them realize their own potential. You sometimes have to believe in someone more than they believe in themselves in order for them to achieve their goals. You must transfer that belief to them. Once they take that first step, the second and then the third and the fourth and so on are much, much easier. Then you almost sit back and watch as they take more initiative and become far more proactive in their lives. And what did you do? You simply asked a question that spurred all this tremendous growth.

Remember, folks, YOU have what it takes to make it happen. Take it slow, and remember that a journey of 1000 miles begins with a single step. And for the people you work with, you are that first step for them. Just be patient and walk slowly with them.