Blog - Shilpa Bhouraskar

How to deal with skeptics in your practice

I got an email from one of my students who has just started her practice.It was really exciting to watch her passion for her growing business and her eagerness to share her work with others.
And a few weeks ago she was upset about a nasty comment on one of her Facebook posts. She wrote to me about this. So her question was how do you deal with haters, critics, skeptics…

This is a big question and I have seen it holds a lot of practitioners back. So I have made this video to share my thoughts on it. And I have also invited Dr Isaac Golden to share his views so you can benefit from his experience as well.

I look forward to your inputs. Don't forget to add where you plan to focus your time and energy from now on.

Discussion:

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I agree with both of you that to focus on the positive is so much more beneficial, not just in homoeopathy but life in general. I admire the work you both do and appreciate the time you give in support of the homoeopathic community. Thanks :)

Thanks Paula :)

Hi Shilpa,

Thank you so much for this! I really needed to hear this. I am going to focus on building a small network of homoeopaths and practitioners in my area so that we can remind each other of the good work we are doing. I have had days when I wondered why am I doing this, these were the days where I had a particularly difficult case or a sceptic and critical person. In reality, however, these days and people are far and few between and I am making a difference to most of my patients' lives.

Thanks again,
Janine

Thanks Janine. Great to see your focus on building your network. I can assure you that it will be a very worthwhile effort.

Thanks Shilpa and Isaac - we can assume that many of the half billion users of homeopathy are in India and i take heart from having read that the reason homeopathy has thrived in India is because the women originally used the remedies in their homes during the cholera epidemics - not sure how accurate this story is, but it says a lot about the power of the 'grass-roots families' to effect change - and these are the people I enjoy to working with. Agreed also that it is best to stay well under the radar as far as HP is concerned - along with all the other considerations is the loss of profit that might come in the wake of a big shift towards homeopathy and we homeopaths know that 'fear of poverty' is a very pivotal symptom.

Thanks for sharing your focus Pauline and I completely agree with the power of grassroot families!!

There is an ancient saying that when elephant is walking on the Road, the barking of dogs would not make any difference. An elephant is an elephant. I am not a doctor but my experience with many homeopaths is that they would not discuss the remedies with te patients. The patient is left in ignorance. It would be better to have healthy discussion with the patients on the remedies except in cases where placebo is administered. Also, most of the homeopaths behave like allopathic doctors. An informed patient would provide active assistance to the doctor in the quest for right remedy. Also, some of the doctors may do not understand the complexity themselves leading to criticism. Homeo is a great science of humanity. It would flourish due to its inner strength.

Hi Shilpa,
I have been in practice in country NSW for nearly 25 years. When I began, some of our best friends were local doctors. They were never rude to me but I know that they thought I was an odd ball. I was so passionate and determined to use homeopathy to help my community that I just did what I knew, day after day. My practice grew. I chose not to advertise. My patients came to me by word of mouth and to this day still do.
Today the same doctors as well as others that I do not know personally refer patients to me regularly, as do local massage therapists, physiotherapists and chiropractors. One doctor, a dear friend, now happily discusses various conditions and treatments with me. This is something he was incapable of doing 10-15 years ago.
I do not have any social media at all which I imagine protects me from those sceptics Isaac was referring to. I have been confronted a few times over the years, but as you wisely suggest I will not enter into an argument that takes my time and energy and that I am unlikely to win. I simply say that the proof is in the pudding. If they have never tried homeopathy then they cannot know the miracles that are hidden away there.
Homeopathy is becoming better known in this country. The fact that many of my local doctors are happy to refer to me is proof. Thanks to people like yourself and Isaac it is being discussed outside of our little community.
I consider myself blessed that I am able to follow my passion each day. I run a busy clinic and really don't stick my neck out to attract sceptic comments. That is my advice to new practitioner - do what you love and do it as well as you can and don't listen to the whingers or complainers.
That was a bit of a ramble but I remember how hard it was in the beginning and just wanted to share my experience.
Thank you Shilpa and Isaac too.

Such wise words Carolyn. Thanks for sharing your beautiful experience and for showing us all what happens when you continue to move along your path with such dedication and passion.

Agreed to both ov u. Unfortunately some anti homeopathic people use discouraging remarks. Generally it's a attitude of unsuccessful people. Some how I really appreciate the positive approach of Shilpa. This is great. We homeopaths face critical remarks at every stage. I salute to Shilpa as she is just like a cool breeze in hot summer critical remarks of negative people. Hat's off!!!!!

Thank you for that wonderful advice Dr Golden(I am a great fan of yours) and Shilpa, it has cheered me up immensely. I read a stupid article in the New Scientist magazine and was tempted to email them and say something but I realised that it would be a wasted effort as they are pigheaded scientists and would not listen to anything I had to say.

I really needed this post today. I am 5 weeks into to my new business and have not seen the most positive clients as yet. I do have very supportive friends though. As Carolyn Mell writes below, I really think building the business slowly by word of mouth referrals will attract clients with the right frame of mind. I just need a lot of patience and will power right now. Also for remembering to offer gratitude for the good things.
It is good advise to not get involved with negative feedback at all.

I have almost 1.5K likes on my FB page, and I've only once ever had a troll post there, very early on when I first started. I welcomed him with open arms saying something like: "Welcome, my first troll! I must be doing something right!" and I've never heard from a troll on FB since.

When some other trolls wrote to me via the UK Advertising Standards Authority Ltd however, this is how it ended up boosting my practice significantly: https://sites.google.com/a/hautmanhomeopathy.com/www/advertising-standards/how-to-boost-your-business

So no, I don't always agree the best policy is to just keep our heads down and be under the radar. If we want to have a wider impact in the world, we need to be seen and heard as widely as possible.

The first rule is 'don't feed the trolls' - and I agree that it's a waste of time getting into a back and forth with them. But right now those same trolls are helping to feed me, as they are in fact helping genuine new clients to find me.

Hi Jenny, I wish I had heard about you and your website a year or longer ago. It is so refreshing to find someone out there who has some fire in their belly.... Times have been challenging here down under. Homoeopaths went to court and lost. Free speech is seriously under attack. Hope you don't mind if I publish your link on Hpathy where I have currently an article published. http://hpathy.com/homeopathy-papers/how-to-survive-the-attempt-to-destroy-homoeopathy-in-australia/2/
Cheers,
Heike

So nice to hear such words of encouragement!!!

Thank you Shilpa. That was amazingly helpful. And Isaac's realistic approach, like yours is unarguably the best way to keep myself focused on what really matters - being effective and making a difference in people's lives. Your blogs are filled with wisdom and support. Thank you again.

Thanks Leone...