By Jake Francis
I'm sure many therapists have experienced new clients coming in and saying "I've tried everything, I don't know what else I can do"... And we know they have been to see lots of different therapists (physios, chiropractors, osteopaths, holistic therapists, etc.) with conflicting views, and to be honest probably end up competing for the client. We have probably all been guilty of it in the past. But I'm sure the client will tell you, its not helpful.. It can make things worse.
So, how can we stop this? Well, I think it's important to remember that we are dealing with an actual human being that's struggling.. They've gone to see lots of different therapists because they don't understand their issue and/or why it is persisting. Ultimately, they want to be out of pain. It is no good to them, for me to say "well, I don't know why they're tellling you that", no matter how wrong I think it is. All rehabilitation is a process that requires trust, belief and agreement to progress... These can't happen with conflicting views being thrown all over the place.
Now, the ideal situation is you get your new client to agree to see only you. However, this is unlikely on day one.. You have only just met the person... You need to build their trust in you! The way to do that is to listen to everything that they've been told, listen to their problem, and find out what they want to achieve. From there, you could try to explain why things might have been said to them, then discuss your thoughts and explain those thoughts. We need to start explaining more to our clients and making sure they understand:
That there is a way forward
How you're going to help them achieve their goal
It's all about them, not whoever else they've seen.