How Chiropractic Wins When We Have More Women Speakers and Leaders — Part 4

PART FOUR: Simple Steps to Make Change Possible

The good news is that we care. Many people are engaging in this conversation in powerful and open ways and that is exactly the path that will lead us to a new future.

New voice, new ways of being, new energies

The big answer is to make space for more people, DIFFERENT people to have voice. (And there IS enough space for everyone.)

Important editorial note: This conversation has been centered on women, but it applies to so many more people. There are other communities that are unseen and unheard. Gay chiropractors. Trans chiropractors. Disabled chiropractors. Minority chiropractors. They are also face a shortage of role models and leadership opportunities and for many of the same reasons.

When we always reward the same things we always get more of the same things.

I am ready for something new mixed into my same old chiropractic leadership.

We cannot make change happen. But together, we can make change possible.


Step One: Hold space

I believe the most vital thing we must do (and I mean all of us) is hold space for all the different kinds of voices. None are better than another. But they all have value for us to truly hear.

Yin voices. Gay voices. Trans voices. Quiet voices. Happy voices. Sad voices. Uncertain voices. Millennial voices.

Imagine what we would learn if we compassionately listened to all those stories and all those perspectives.

It would not mean we were wrong to be the way we are. It would not mean we had to change who we are. It would allow us to begin to accept and support those not like us.

And we need to hold space for ourselves. To be scared but carry on. To be filled with doubt but to try anyway. To celebrate failure, because that means we tried. To be loving and to be loved. To ask for help. To accept help.

Step Two: Co-create

To make change happen, we need each other.

  • Work together.
  • Be willing to be uncomfortable with a partner.
  • Ask for help.
  • Co-create with someone with a different experience and perspective.

The GREAT news is that we are innately co-creators.

Step Three: Be flexible

We are going to need to try new things which will be uncomfortable. We are going to need to accommodate things that seem weird to us.

And be open. We are going to need to accept influence from new ideas and not assume we already know everything we need to know.

Step Four: Look for and encourage new voices

The problem with new voices is that they are new. New means they are not familiar and therefore not easy to spot.

This is another place we have to work together. We will need to ask other people to help scout for NEW voices and perspectives.

And when we hear that new thing and it feels uncomfortable, we need to hold the space again to not immediately react with our same old patterns.

Step Five: Ask for change that matters to you

We need to speak up. When we see old patterns of inequality emerge, we need to say something and offer to help.

“I notice that your board only has one woman. Can we help you find a great women to join?”
“I notice your conference has no minority speakers. How can we work together to find some powerful new voices.”

Or something as simple as:

“That language you used was not okay with me and here is why.”

Be calm. Be helpful. But say something.

Step Six: Feature and promote new kinds of role models

When we see something or someone that reflect these new voices and new patterns, take the time to point out how great it is to experience something new.

We reinforce behavior by what we support. Support new voice with your attention, your recommendations and your dollars. And be sure to reward the organization that take the time to work on this with us.

Step Seven: Assume the best of people

We must always remember that the people around us mean well. No one is trying to hold down minorities or women. No one is trying to favor Yang voices over yin voices.

The world is full of good people who are trying to do the right thing. When we remember that, we can find a new path and new way to build something new without making everyone else wrong and bad.

How will chiropractic WIN with new voices speaking and leading?

  • New voices means more knowledge
  • New voices means building a bigger tribe
  • New voices means more people participating
  • New voices mean new options
  • New voices means new collaborations
  • New voices means new definitions of success
  • New voices means new pathways of influence

Together means everyone.

Together, we are always greater than we are alone.


Thank you for making it all the way to the end of this series on How Chiropractic Wins if We Have More Women Speaking and Leading.

If you missed the other posts, here are the links:

Part One: How Things Are Now

Part Two: Why won’t women just step up?

Part Three: Deconstructing the myths

Hi! I’m Mary — a chiropractor, a writer, a marketer, and a teacher.

I am the founder of The Art of Story Project, an online business which coaches speakers and content creators to use story to become more powerful influencers.

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