In the hierarchy of health, each approach produces a different set of results. The key to success is knowing which set of results you desire and then applying to corresponding strategy.
In the first 2 articles (which can be accessed at Part 1 and Part 2)of the series we looked at Symptom Treatment and Addressing the Cause. While these approaches do produce vastly different outcomes, what they share is that they are both reactive – meaning that they wait for problems to arise before taking any action.
The next two approaches in the Hierarchy of Health make the shift to proactive strategies. In my opinion, this is the most important shift a person can make when it comes to their health and the healthiest people I know spend most of their energy and time being proactive. The reason being proactive is so important is that it is much less costly (in time, energy, stress, and money) than being reactive, and the benefits are exponentially greater.
Most people are familiar with the idea of being proactive when it comes to other areas of their lives. We get oil changes and tune-ups for our automobiles BEFORE problems arise. Why? Because it is a much less costly way to operate AND it gives us the best chance to have a smoothly running ride!
Other examples of being proactive is purchasing insurance for our homes and cars, having a security system, having financial investments, fertilizing and over seeding a healthy lawn, eating healthy food, and regular dental visits, among many others.
The first proactive approach on the Hierarchy of Health is preventative and what we call Protection. Protection typically (but not always) begins after we have had a problem, did the work to Address the Cause, and choose to take regular steps to protect themselves from the problem returning. If I don’t want my car to break down, stranding my family and I on the side of the road until expensive repairs are carried out, I will schedule regular maintenance appointments to prevent such an occurrence.
After a health crisis such as a heart attack or a battle with cancer many people who had been reactive their whole lives will ‘see the light,’ and take steps such as exercising, eating a better diet, and maybe taking up meditation to protect themselves from future issues.
The benefit of Protection is two-fold. First it is WAY more convenient and less painful than dealing with one problem after another. Changing your oil every 6 months is much easier than having your engine replaced. The second benefit is that your overall level of health will improve and stay that way for the long term. You may eat a better diet to prevent a heart attack, but it also enhances your general health and well-being across many domains for a lifetime. In effect, you are raising the standards for your own health and committed to maintaining that standard.
At Nexus Chiropractic, once we have Addressed the Cause during the Initial Phase of Care, we offer a couple of proactive options – one being Protection. While they are completely optional, most people choose one of these plans. Why? They are convenient, easy, and they just make sense.
Take a moment to evaluate where in your life you are reactive and where you are proactive. Where can you shift to becoming even more proactive? How will being more proactive benefit your health and life in both the short and long-term?
A great way to start becoming proactive is to attend one of our special presentations at Nexus. They take place most months and cover a variety of topics to help you take control of your health. See the schedule at Nexus or phone the office for details.
Thorin Gault, D.C.