The human race has apparently conquered Earth, supposedly triumphing over other species. However, when it comes to stress management, I think we are the worst.
Humans suffer from an strange ailment called stress. It's usually related to having too many things to do and too little time. Unfortunately, this is a common symptom of modern life.
Basically, if you manage your own nutrition practice, or deal with many patients, seminars, and workshops; you may become vulnerable to stress.
Moreover, the more successful you become, the more chances there will be to be stressed. More customers, more meetings, more responsibility... But, Does it have to be this way?
Imagine a life with no stress; imagine the life of a cat. Cats seem to deal with stress just fine! Their schedule is packed with sleeping, being lazy, and other strategically designed stress-free activities. We have a lot to learn from cats.
But, can you be as relaxed as a cat whilst still being productive? Absolutely. Stress can be reduced and eliminated. Let's analyse what are some of the common sources of frustration for nutrition professionals.
Cats know how to relax, plus they are cute and smart.
Where does stress come from?
There are many activities you will likely carry out through the week at your nutrition practice. These can include paperwork, marketing, scheduling meetings... and actually having consultations with patients.
If you are a nutritional therapist, you probably chose your profession to help individuals achieve their nutrition goals. However, how much time do you actually spend in consultations with clients?
After interviewing many nutritionists and dietitians, my experience is that most of them spend way too much time with admin tasks. Some of the most time consuming activities seem to be writing reports, and meal plans.
If you are managing a successful practice and you are busy, I'm willing to bet that a great deal of stress and frustration is generated from paperwork and admin tasks.
Paperwork can be frustration because it's something you have to do, as opposed to something you want to do. Additionally, it tends to pile up and multiply fast. If only customers and opportunities were generated as fast...
On the other hand, helping clients is much more rewarding. After all, you are guiding individuals towards a better lifestyle; their success is your success too – and success feels good.
I'm sure many of your patients are grateful to you for your help – I am certainly grateful to my personal nutritionist. Happy patients give you appreciation and send you flowers. Paperwork gives you headaches and takes away your sanity.
I am pretty confident that the way to run your nutrition practice with zero stress as it grows and demands more from you – in fact, the way to grow any business without going crazy – is to do less of the activities that cause stress (paperwork) and to do more of the activities that are rewarding (helping people). Let's explore how.
Replacing stressful activities with rewarding ones
If talking to clients is rewarding, and paperwork is frustrating, how about doing more of the former and less of the latter?
Usually with more clients comes more paperwork, but it doesn't have to be this way. To see why, please try to answer these questions first:
- Do you find yourself writing the same content in reports over and over?
- Do you manually re-write or copy questionnaire answers and notes from paper to your computer?
- Do you write every meal plan from scratch, rather than recycling parts of it from a personal library of suitable plans?
The above are examples of common inefficiencies in the process many nutritional therapists and dietitians follow when managing client data and admin tasks.
For example, many practice owners start small, with a handful of clients. At this point, managing the above tasks is easy. However, as their practice grows, they start wishing they had a better system in place with more automation and less clutter.
The way to do less paperwork and more client consultations is to:
- Automate repetitive tasks
- Eliminate intermediate steps in processes (such as copying content again)
- Recycle parts of your work, such as reports and meal plans, rather than starting from scratch every single time
In the past, many business owners would hire an assistant to handle the paperwork. Scheduling meetings, following up, etc. Nowadays, you can get the bulk of the work done with software – at a fraction of the price.
Automating and reducing your paperwork with software for nutritionists
There are many software tools out there that can help you run your practice in a more smooth way. Some very basics are email, Skype, calendars, and Microsoft office.
However, you may find it harder to find a more specialised software solution specifically designed for nutritionists and dietitians.
In my experience, most nutritionists would like to have intake questionnaires for clients, reports, meal plans, calendars, reminders, client records, etc.
There are certainly ways in which you can get all of the above – actually for free. However, you would have to search and combine many different kinds of programs. E.g. Google for the calendar, MyfitnessPal for food journals, etc.
Wouldn't it be amazing to get all of the features you need to eliminate paperwork in a single software package designed exclusively for nutritionists? Well, that's exactly what NutriAdmin is all about.
In order to create NutriAdmin, we interviewed – and continue to do – hundreds of nutritionists asking how software could help them eliminate the most frustrating aspects of their job.
Below is a sample email I've sent to some nutritionists. Many of them have been kind enough to reply, outlining paperwork, specifically reports, meal plans, questionnaires, etc as some of their biggest pain points.
If you are interested in managing your practice stress-free – relaxed as a cat, perhaps you would like to check out www.nutriadmin.com. You are likely to like the concept if you are a nutrition professional, after all, we've built this app specifically for you.
Finally, we are still growing and improving the software every day based on suggestions made by the users. If you are a nutritionist, I would be really happy to hear what features you would like to see in software. Just comment below and we'll take it into account for NutriAdmin.
We live crazy times. Hope you manage to tame the stress beast – at least a bit. Thanks for reading and have a great day!