Wellness Education & Why Qualifications are Important
Never before has the importance of qualifications when seeking your health and wellbeing information been so important.
The quantity, diversity and overwhelming nature of the information that is available to most people on the internet these days is more of a hinderance than a help.
Gurus, health coaches, medical mediums, scientists and skeptics can offer people such polarising advice. As with any field it requires a lot of discernment and self knowledge to choose the right path for you, and often in the realm of health and wellbeing you’re not always in the best shape to be making these choices. Fear, ill health and exhaustion can have you bouncing from one extreme protocol, diet or ‘it’ food to the next, seeking relief.
Even within highly trained branches of natural, integrative and allopathic medicine there are quite naturally going to be differences of opinion. It is no wonder people are confused and hoping for a magic pill!
So what do you do?
I have been thinking deeply on all of these topics recently as I pivot my business and continue my never ending education.
I continue to be challenged with what to call myself so that it’s easy for those seeking my assistance to know what I do.
The word coach is often swallowed up in a world of ‘7 figure business’ marketing or ‘green smoothie’ wellness advocates. I have no issue with either of these markets but it is just not what I am.
My business involving coaching, courses and acupuncture, is based on my almost 20 years as an acupuncturist with thousands of hours of client interactions involving acupuncture treatment, counseling, lifestyle advice and intuitive support.
It is impossible even when I am not in the traditional clinical setting to leave these skills behind. And I certainly wouldn’t want to.
There is also the very real and ongoing nature of what is required of us as Registered Practitioners in Australia. Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine in Australia is governed by AHPRA. The Australian Health Practitioner Registration Association is the same governing body that oversees Doctors, Nurses, and Chiropractors.
One of the stipulations of this is the minimum 21 hours of ongoing education in your field of practice on top of 4 hours of education to ensure you are up to date with the latest in laws and ethics in your field as well as a current First Aid certificate.
Last year alone I did over 250 hours of ongoing education within the fields of Chinese Medicine, Yoga Teacher Training and Facilitation education.
I think this is important information for clients to know.
So how do I evolve my business and (hopefully) make it easier for my predominately women clients to find and access coaching, treatment and mentoring to support their wellness and health journey?
The answer I believe is simple but it requires both parties to be educated in our approach.
Underneath the title and the branding we need to look rigorously at the education of the person we are approaching and the type of assistance we are looking to receive.
You wouldn’t go to your child minder for a hair cut, neither should you seek psychological medical advice from the gorgeous lady down the road selling essential oils and moonstone (both of which I adore and use in my own home!) You may of course enjoy her company and wear her oils and stones as a reminder of your innate magic, inspire some restoration in your limbic system (where we register scent and emotion in our brain) whilst seeking out professional assistance.
This sounds obvious but I feel that common sense is often not so common and these things need spelling out.
And on the part of the provider there needs to be on going transparency and commitment to the evolution of their education and their field. Health care and our understanding of Mind, Body and Spirit is never going to be a static space.
New developments and understandings continue to occur. I mean, it was less than a decade ago when neuroplasticity was a new discovery.
Having said that I have long eschewed further theoretical based education in preference of emerging fields that offer practical skills that will have lasting effects for clients.
Juggling all of these desires I have chosen to enrol in the Diploma of Wellness Leadership Program through the Australasian Sustainable Wellness Academy (ASWA). It is the first of this kind of qualification to be offered through a registered training authority and as such is a new benchmark in wellness education, not only in Australia, but on a global scale.
It has long been a passion of mine to not just treat corporate burnout on the treatment table and in private coaching but to support preventative change in the workplace environment. It is my aim to become a trainer and mentor of this program in workplaces throughout Australasia and through my involvement with ASWA over the last few years as this course was written I have recently been offered a role as an ASWA ambassador.
This is a truly exciting time for me and the industry I love. Most importantly though qualifications like this one make it much easier for individuals and businesses alike to make discerning choices about where to invest their time, energy (and dollars) supporting their health, wellness, and emotional wellbeing.
Wellness and Wellbeing are more than passing fads and I feel it’s important to acknowledge the importance of the preventative role these qualifications will play in the future and the support they will offer to traditional healthcare modalities.
There is a place for it all, and I look forward to sharing more of my journey as it unfolds.
Did you resonate with something that I have just mentioned, perhaps in your own health journey or education?
I would love to hear from you. This is an ongoing conversation that I would love for you to be involved in!