Noah: Welcome to DC2Be Revolution. Helping chiropractic students think big in order to live large. I'm your host Noah Volz and today I'm here with Dr. Andrew and Ashley Torchio. They are chiropractors and the owners of Pangaea chiropractic in Bend, Oregon. They are on a mission to change the world through education, transparency, and empowerment. Thank you two for being here. My first question for the two of you is about approaching somebody as an individual, as a living being, instead of approaching them as a conglomeration of different symptoms.
Drs. Torchio: The first thing that I do at the first visit is I don't recognize their symptoms because I don't want them to think anything they're coming in with doesn't matter to me. So it does matter to me and I didn't want you to have those symptoms and I don't want your body to be expressing itself like that. I will definitely address it but then being a chiropractor you always have to take it deeper and we, all of us, know it's not the symptom, it's never been the symptom and so even when you look at the subluxation, even that in itself can be a symptom. We start talking thoughts, traumas, and toxins. We start taking it deeper. As long as you can help them wrap their head around the fact that it's all an expression of how their body or their mind are responding to their environment. The hard part is not in the session. You offer educational opportunities or look at how the education process take place in your office.
Andrew and Ashley Torchio: Everyone's at a different place in their life and your body is just an expression of where you're at, what you're going through, and the body is dynamic. The body is always in a state of flux between one end and the other. We just want to spend more time on the joyful end of life. The best way to do that is to tap into the system that controls everything. Which as we know is the nervous system and one of the things we miss out with Western medicine is they completely dissect the body into different parts and miss the whole aspect.
Virtually every single patient or person who comes into our office has absolutely been told that their body does not masterfully work within that system that we speak of in chiropractic and they've been told a different story. So you mentioned education and education is everything to our patients and to our future of helping change the world. We have to hold each other accountable as chiropractors but more importantly on the day-to-day aspects of clinic and work we have to transform people's thinking. Which is not easy. It's a paradigm shift. I mean the first day, the first thing you do is sit down with them and feed into everything that they're saying.
Understanding where they're coming from, then planting your first seed by saying that this could be deeper than what you're seeing right here. You just plant those little seeds on the first day, second day, and the third day. Enjoy your honeymoon period with your patients, when they first start we call it the honeymoon and every day a seed is planted. It starts on the phone when the person calls. We're already dropping these gems on the phone without scripting to make sure that the person automatically knows this is going to be different.
I feel like this is my opportunity for my breakthrough and that happens from the very first phone call that they make. We have to make sure that we're educating them and we're giving them opportunities to get to the bottom of what makes them, them. Education never stops.
I'm so glad you brought in the garden analogy. I feel like so often I hear the analogy of a chiropractor is like a mechanic and you just bring your car in and they hook up the diagnostics. I love this analogy of the law of the harvest. You're planting these seeds and over time those seeds grow into great big plants and then you harvest the fruits of those plants. If you continue to work with a dynamic system in the way that you guys are working with the system so.
We got to meet people where they're at. People seek you out for being a chiropractor for a specific reason, but the reason that we're able to help people might be completely different from the reason that they called us. I got low back pain. Okay, cool, you have low back pain but you have a serious disconnect and we need to make sure that we mature that relationship with them so that we can start to help them understand that it goes a little bit deeper than that and we can then transform them, instead of just covering up a symptom.
Noah: I feel like you cultivated some of that skill on this trip that you went on that you called “ 2 Chiros Mission” and I wonder if you could talk about what that trip was and how that helped you develop the skill of meeting people where they are?
Drs. Torchio: We had a crazy idea when we were in chiropractic school that we were going to do something different. We met in chiropractic school in Davenport Iowa and we decided that we wanted to travel, see the world, but also save lives around the world and maybe selfishly we wanted to test chiropractic and in some sort of way and one thing led to the next. A week after we graduated we're on a plane flying to India and the unique thing is that and you hear chiropractors say that all you need is chiropractic, but when you're in a country where you can't understand the language and you can't communicate verbally with them you have to let go of all that verbal communication and you have to look within to all the other valuable communication skills that we have that we completely forget about.
We just verbalize too much of what it is that we're dealing with so we had the opportunity to work with thousands and thousands of patients all over the world and never even speaking their language, never knowing what their symptoms were, never knowing what they were seeking. Deep down inside we knew that chiropractic was going to help serve them and every single time it always did. That really transformed us and really allowed us to go outside of our shells and discover what chiropractic is all about.
When we started at Kara's mission the first time I went to India, we practiced with a doctor who had already set up the practice for a couple years and he invited us to work there. We were only there for a month the first time. A mission trip is so incredibly important because there's something about being in school that steals just a tiny little bit of your soul and a tiny little bit of everything that you thought was possible when you first came to chiropractic philosophy. Because all these doctors are telling you how great it is and then you get to clinic and you're like, “wait so I can't adjust that guy” and you're like that person needs an adjustment. It's like every single Board question is to refer out. I think when you decide to be in the mindset and then to take that with me as we start our practice together. I wanted that fire, that drive that we had in India the first time to come back. It ignited all over again because we were so passionate and so driven when we got home that we literally finished up as fast as we could in the clinic in school. We did a preceptorship and when we got out. We immediately went back to India. What made us feel like we came alive again and being able to travel and teach people chiropractic all over Southeast Asia and India and we are adjusting Sherpas as we're hiking in Nepal and to be able to do that and you know definitely really brings back to life someone that knows absolutely nothing and then they're like this is amazing.
This is what I want out of Americans but it's harder to sell here because we're so integrated with everything else that's going on. We're literally in the in the bowels of the medical system right now. There it is so easy and they get it and they get that interconnection. Everyone wants what we have, no matter where you go, everyone wants chiropractic, they do, and once they get it. It's like of course why haven't we always been doing this. So we want to be able to bring that back to the states.
When we came back the orphanage our mission was a non-profit. We had a for-profit clinic but every weekend we would either go to an orphanage or we go to an ashram and as many people as they could line up.
Noah: I think that's it’s important to recognize that with all the practice management and all the talk about communication that is verbal communication. I think sometimes we forget how much we communicate with our hands and how important that is. I wanted you to tell a story about the clinic, maybe something that happened while you were setting up the clinic that that you think would be interesting and inspiring for people to hear.
Drs. Torchio: When we were there we actually started a YouTube channel and we did a chiro cribs episode. While most of our patients had absolutely no financial ability to pay us, which was totally fine and I would tell a story of how if ten people show up in the clinic maybe one of them can afford the two-dollar adjustment that we charged and two dollars was a significant fee for the majority of the people that were in the village or town that we were in. So I would say if they couldn't pay for it and you were hungry they'd give you food. So we had people that would bring us food. We had more mangoes than we could eat and because you know one woman paid us in mangoes. She would bring us a bag full of mangoes two times a week. They were delicious. If you need a place to stay you adjust someone and they'll give you a place to stay. Everywhere we went in India we always had a place to stay because we'd meet a few people and we met some more wealthy individuals and we started adjusting them and then we tell them we were traveling and they hook you up with the place to say and then of course finances come into play. As soon as you have no money you find someone to adjust and then they give you money so everything that you ever could possibly need disappears.
When you are a chiropractor people will love you for the service that you provide them. They will give you a place to stay if you ever need a place to stay and they'll give you money for your service if they can afford to and they'll give you more money than we could ever possibly know what to do with it, if we just stay true the principle of service. So many funny and amazing things happened in India. We saw our first miracles. We set up a clinic in the same house so it was our full-time residence and then the downstairs with the clinic. We had an amazing translator who was with us every single day and he traveled with us on the weekends. He spoke beautiful English, we pretty much educated everybody by a picture of a power plant with an electrical line and a light bulb and it would explain chiropractic.
The translator would explain it. I don’t know what he's saying, we had no idea what you would say, but I'm guessing you that he explained this is your brain, these wires are the signals and the nerves and the the brain stem and so we drew that and then he said and this light bulb is your organs or your cells or tissues and there was a light switch. The body doesn't work if the light switch is off. So we have to turn on the light switch and everything works. People would just look at it go aha. That’s pretty much how we educated every single person I came into contact with.
Even we were traveling we never adjusted someone without educating them. Even when we were hiking around we always would pull out this picture and explain to them how the body works. That we're going to give them a specific chiropractic adjustment and we're going to turn their light switch back on.
Noah: How does your current education procedure at your office in Oregon reflect those early drawings?
Drs. Torchio: From the very first phone call we’re trying to shake their paradigm up a little bit and then after they come in. On that first day we sit down together and one of the first things we do is to read over your application for care and I know that you think I'm going to ask you about where it hurts, what makes it feel better or worse. I always say I’m not going to start there. I’m going with my first impression from your body and then I look at posture. I do that before I talk about any sort of symptom whatsoever. I think doing that and just letting them know what their body tells me first.
I don't think very many people go to the doctor and get touched right out of the gate and then from there we never adjust anybody on the first day. After we have all the information about them they always have to come back for that second day. That second day we sit down we do a report of findings and I mean it's an educational class so they have to sit through that and by the time they stand up to look at their x-rays or to look at their insight scans they are connecting the dots themselves.
I don't necessarily want to tell them what's going on or what all could be affected but I'm more than willing to ask them “how could this affect your life or your life energy, how does that affect you, or your family, or those that you live with.” I mean all of these things start coming together and then from there anybody that's a patient can come to our Tuesday night class where we teach a class, 52 different subjects. In order to sign up they have to be a patient of the office. In the first month they have to go to two classes and then one per month thereafter.
When we built this clinic we really wanted to be about the education because even BJ said “you charge for the education and give the adjustment for free.” That's why our Western medical system is broken because there's no education. They'll save your life in a moment of crisis or a heart attack but then they won't do anything after they've saved your life to prevent it from coming back. Which is why most people, when they're stuck in that system, they’re in it until the end.
Our whole office is education, every picture is a chiropractic related life picture and from the second they walk into the clinic for their adjustment the whole conversation we strive to make every conversation about them healing and chiropractic. We have a picture of us at the orphanage. So when a new patient comes into the room they come in and ask about the picture and I say we spent our weekends adjusting at orphanages. This is how I let them know that I can adjust kids.
Noah: Your whole education process puts the responsibility in the patient's hand and empowers them in a way that they're taking more control of their health? Because you're just providing the information and then they're able to digest that in their own unique way and make decisions that reflect the way that they've digested that. Everyone's got to make a mental choice whether or not they're willing to receive the gifts that we have the offer.
Drs. Torchio: Chiropractic students have to keep the conversation about education because this is a paradigm shift that we're asking of most people. Most people cannot make a belief change in their life. The average person might be able to change one or two major belief systems in their entire life and when a new patient calls my office, my whole team we're going to do everything we can to transform their belief system from a broken model into a vitalistic wellness model and that has to start on the phone.
Then it has to continue for potentially the rest of their life because we want people to get adjusted for the rest of their life because they're going to be better if they are. It’s that simple and that's the beauty of it and what I love is getting people into this this paradigm shift and changing people's beliefs. How is that change in the way people think going to ultimately affect the world? How is that going to ripple out and what kind of change can we anticipate on a global scale if we're able to change people's paradigms for the better in this way?
Any time we walk into the office we are not thinking I’m going to change the world today. When I'm walking in you’re focused on each person. I'm going to change their world today, yeah no matter what it is, I'm going to change their world and however that affects them whether they respond to it positively or negatively. Because they get to go home and that affects the entire family. I mean it is a ripple effect, but I’m not thinking in my head, “Today I'm changing the world.”
There's a lot of big things going on in chiropractic right now and the world is a messed up place. There's seven billion people on earth right now and the potential of what we can do for this planet and mankind is beyond my wildest dreams. There's 76,000 practicing chiropractors in the United States and there was 12 licensed practicing chiropractors in India. There’s one and a half billion people that live there and when we get out of our comfort zones in the United States. I mean chiropractic is a household word.
People know what the word chiropractic is and sometimes when we travel outside of our country we find people who are more ready to receive. People in the United States are ready for more. Less people have confidence in our health care system than ever in the history of the healthcare system.
Students ask us all the time if it is a good time to be a chiropractor. It's the best time to be a chiropractor. There's so many messed up things going on out there. As chiropractors we've been doing this for 120 years, but in their world this is something new.
To them it's brand new and they're ready for it. When you’re a principled chiropractor and you're teaching about chiropractic it doesn't matter if they've been to 20 chiropractors before. They'll look at you like you're the first person that's going to change their life and you will be able to transform the world.
Noah: Where can students, chiropractors and people who are motivated by this conversation find out more about you?
Drs. Torchio: Our website, Pangea chiropractic and our Facebook page. We Facebook live all of our health classes on Tuesday nights so if there's students out there that are already starting to think about some ideas of where I can start. All our classes are online so we put them out their live so that people can use them.
Hopefully we're going to be going back to India soon. We're working on setting up some mission trips back to India.
Noah: Thank you for providing all those amazing opportunities. This has been a production of DC2Be Revolution where we think big to live large.
Writing with originality, generosity, compassion and purpose, Dr. Noah Volz imparts valuable lessons in an entertaining, engaging and snappy way―backed by a wealth of experience. As an author, chiropractor, and entrepreneur, he has started and run multiple companies and has been the host of the DC2Be Revolution YouTube channel and podcast.