Last year, I went to a naturopath out of desperation – the traditional medical community was just not addressing my concerns. For me, this was a leap, because I tend to think along conventional lines when it comes to my health. However, I tried to remain open-minded. In the context of the appointment, I mentioned that eventually, I probably could be persuaded to consider some unusual treatment options, but at the front end, we needed to stick with things like nutrition and vitamin supplements, because I understand these and hold them to be valuable. I have to say, within 6 months, I felt so, so much better and was ever-so-much more encouraged.
So earlier this month, I took my daughter, who is having some issues. I guess I should have been specific with our naturopath and reiterated my reluctance toward things that feel somewhat like voodoo.
My daughter came home with some "mystery drug" that she was to place under her tongue. She was to avoid coffee, chapstick, and something else, which I cannot recall in the moment. It was supposed to "change her energy" and "pull out what was bad" in her – she was told to expect possible bad dreams. This was a "cure" for people who have control issues. When I asked Jessica what the stuff was, she said, "I was told not to tell you, because you might freak out." When pressed, she said, "It is dehydrated and denatured breast cancer."
So here is the deal:
You can help someone grow by stretching them slightly over their edges, just beyond their comfort zone. If you try to make them go too far past, they reject you out right. This is true in counseling, exercise science, spirituality, morality … lots of places.
I told Jessica, "There is no way you are taking that."
It just lands too far out of too many of my ideas and convictions – and here's the thing – maybe it would work, but it feels like a witch-doctory potion to me. So, on Monday, I will call an MD.
If you want to influence people, package your ideas so that they at least sound familiar to your audience. Usually someone can jump just a little bit farther than they're used to; when faced with the Grand Canyon, they just back away.