Interview with William Esteb (Part I)
Excerpt from Inspire Chiropractic
Creative Director of Patient Media
“Once you see and understand how these principles work, there is no reason to go back to being oblivious.”
After a career in advertising and film production, Mr. Esteb was introduced to chiropractic in 1981 when he was asked to write the world’s first patient education video, what became known as the Peter Graves video for Renaissance International.
Since then he has brought his “patient’s-point-of-view” to many facets of chiropractic. He has conducted over 50 in-office consultation and patient focus groups that have provided fodder for 10 books, several of which are used as texts at various chiropractic colleges. He has traveled over 1.4 million miles sharing his unique perspective with chiropractors around the world.
Currently he serves as the creative director of Patient Media, Inc. (www.patientmedia.com) where he provides patient-relevant education and communication tools. He is also co-founder of Perfect Patients (www.perfectpatients.com) the interactive website service for chiropractors.
When he isn’t writing about chiropractic or speaking about chiropractic, he can usually be found thinking about chiropractic—from a patient’s point of view.
Notes from the editors:
I have had the privilege of a one-on-one lunch break with Mr. William Esteb after a seminar. From that insightful encounter, I found Mr.Esteb to be a purposeful and driven man with great vision.
In the following interview, you will learn how Mr. Esteb applied Napoleon Hill’s philosophy to grow his business, develop purpose, make keen decisions and cultivate faith. What is even most impressive is that Mr. Esteb had not yet read the book Think and Grow Rich when we approached him. What he encountered after reading the book was what he calls, “the DNA of success principles.” In other words, he was living these principles and applying them without ever reading the philosophy. Mr. Esteb is not a chiropractor, but he thinks, acts, and looks like one! His message today for chiropractic is a critical one.
– Dr. Matt Hammett
Dr. Trish Hammett interviewing Mr. William Esteb.
Could you repeat what you just told me about how you were first introduced to this book?
Sure. I searched my library, which is extensive actually, for a copy of Think and Grow Rich, assuming that such a classic would be there, but it was not. Therefore, I searched and found a copy online and began reading it. I had not read the book before, but I recognized many of the principles because some mentors and people whom I respect had shared them with me. I had also seen some of the ideas in success literature that I have read over the years. In a sense, I suddenly uncovered the mother load, or the DNA, you might say, of some of the success principles that I think we take for granted. I certainly have. I read the book recently, but I have been familiar with the principles.
You mentioned that this was the “DNA of other success principles”. Can you give us an overview as to how this philosophy as impacted your life?
There are many principles that I lifted right out of scripture, frankly, such what you set your heart on and the rich get richer, the poor get poorer from Matthew. Some of the other principles come from Proverbs. In some ways, this was not as much of a new collection as it was a distillation of other success literature. Those would probably be some of the biggest ones.
You are very well known in chiropractic, but for the one or two people who are not familiar with you and your work; could you tell us briefly about your background in chiropractic?
Well, not being a chiropractor myself, I have found a niche in helping chiropractors bridge the gap between what they know and what patients do not know. My focus has largely patient communications and, more specifically, patient education. I got my start back in 1981 when I was working for a film production company. From my involvement with this company, Drs. Guy Riekeman and Joseph Flesia of Renaissance International introduced me to chiropractic. They were in the process of getting ready to create patient education videos for the profession, which was quite an innovation back in the early 80’s when we were still playing with Betamax and VHS. They invited our firm to help them create their videos by invited me to attend one of their seminars where I was ‘really’ introduced to chiropractic. I have to confess, I had a negative or a tainted view of chiropractic based on the cultural notions of chiropractic at the time. What I heard that weekend from those two inspiring leaders resonated with me. It made sense that the nervous system controlled everything.
I began chiropractic care literally as a research project to prepare for writing the patient education videos, so I started on a non-symptomatic basis. I saw the incredible need that chiropractors faced. They needed help to be able to explain their principles to people who, for the most part, were suffering from a cultural hypnosis of the allopathic medical model. That is what I have been doing for the last 27 years.
What highlights or accomplishments are you most proud of in your personal and professional life?
In my personal life, I would say my 31-year marriage and my family. We have had three generations living under our roof at the same time, and the challenges that presents (as well as the incredible benefits) have been quite remarkable. I do not take that for granted a single day. Also on a personal level, I try to be as healthy as I can be, not as an idol but as a way of “walking the walk.” If you are going to influence healthcare providers, you have to be healthy yourself, based on the law of the lid: the student rarely gets smarter than the teacher, and the patient rarely gets healthier than the doctor. I think just attending to those issues, not just physically but also mentally, intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually. It is more than just physical health.
On a professional level, the fact that I have started three successful businesses that have helped many chiropractors and patients has been an important milestone. I have also written ten books that describe the doctor-patient relationship from a patient’s point of view. Gosh, I do not really spend a lot of time even thinking about that. I am sure there are other professional accomplishments I should mention. Being able to stand in front of a group of people and share my ideas, I suppose, is a professional accomplishment. I am the high school wallflower, the guy that would never raise his hand in class to offer an idea or suggestion. The fact that I am out there sharing ideas in front of a group of people, I suppose, would be both a personal and professional accomplishment.
In Think & Grow Rich, the publisher’s preface says that ‘riches cannot always be measured in money’. We would like to hear your thoughts on this statement and your own personal definition of being rich.
As I was reading this book recently, I saw that the Great Depression influenced Napoleon’s (concept of being rich). Having money was a major focus of the book. He would probably be quick to point out that riches show up and affluence shows up in many, many other areas. I think there has been somewhat of a blurred notion that success and riches are the same. I have personally met many people who are quite rich financially, but who exhibit incredible poverty in other areas of their lives. One should want to be very careful about equating riches and success.
What is your definition of being successful?
The definition of success is based upon a certain aspect from which you are speaking. For example, physical success would have its bearing in terms of health, wellbeing, vitality, energy, and longevity. Financial success would be the sense of having affluent and abundant resources. Family success would be measured differently. It would be about how well you keep your I-love-you’s current and what your relationship is with your parents, your siblings, your own children, and your spouse. Each one of those different disciplines, whether they be family, mental, spiritual, or financial has a different meaning of success.
It is important to have a sense of ease about those disciplines, whether in your spiritual life, your mental life or your family life, and to be able to have adequate resources in those areas so that you are not constrained. For example, one of the things very important to me when it comes to “success” is the ability to use my time as I see fit and not to be constrained to have to do something else.
In Think & Grow Rich!, Napoleon Hill includes the following quote:
“A peculiar thing about this secret of riches is that those who acquire it and use it find themselves literally swept on to success, but with little effort, and they never again submit to failure.”
We would like to hear some more of your thoughts on that statement.
There is a parable in Matthew 25 that talks about the talents. In Matthew 25: “Unto everyone that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance, but from him that hath not shall be taken even that which he hath.” As I said earlier, the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. It has to do with understanding the principles that, like gravity, just cannot be broken. Once you see and understand how these principles work, there is no reason to go back to being oblivious. Once you lose a beginner’s mind, it is very difficult to go back. That is partly what is at work here. Once you see it in action and once you see how these principles work when consistently applied, it is somewhat hard to go back.
Parable of the Talents
“1 Then shall the kingdom of heaven be like to ten virgins, who taking their lamps went out to meet the bridegroom and the bride. 2 And five of them were foolish and five wise. 3 But the five foolish, having taken their lamps, did not take oil with them. 4 But the wise took oil in their vessels with the lamps. 5 And the bridegroom tarrying, they all slumbered and slept. 6 And at midnight there was a cry made: Behold the bridegroom cometh. Go ye forth to meet him. 7 Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. 8 And the foolish said to the wise: Give us of your oil, for our lamps are gone out. 9 The wise answered, saying: Lest perhaps there be not enough for us and for you, go ye rather to them that sell and buy for yourselves. 10 Now whilst they went to buy the bridegroom came: and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage. And the door was shut. 11 But at last came also the other virgins, saying: Lord, Lord, open to us. 12 But he answering said: Amen I say to you, I know you not. 13 Watch ye therefore, because you know not the day nor the hour.14 For even as a man going into a far country called his servants and delivered to them his goods; 15 And to one he gave five talents, and to another two, and to another one, to every one according to his proper ability: and immediately he took his journey. 16 And he that had received the five talents went his way and traded with the same and gained other five. 17 And in like manner he that had received the two gained other two. 18 But he that had received the one, going his way, digged into the earth and hid his lord’s money. 19 But after a long time the lord of those servants came and reckoned with them. 20 And he that had received the five talents coming, brought other five talents, saying: Lord, thou didst deliver to me five talents. Behold I have gained other five over and above. 21 His lord said to him: Well done, good and faithful servant, because thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will place thee over many things. Enter thou into the joy of thy lord. 22 And he also that had received the two talents came and said: Lord, thou deliveredst two talents to me. Behold I have gained other two. 23 His lord said to him: Well done, good and faithful servant: because thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will place thee over many things. Enter thou into the joy of thy lord. 24 But he that had received the one talent, came and said: Lord, I know that thou art a hard man; thou reapest where thou hast not sown and gatherest where thou hast not strewed. 25 And being afraid, I went and hid thy talent in the earth. Behold here thou hast that which is thine. 26 And his lord answering, said to him: Wicked and slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sow not and gather where I have not strewed. 27Thou oughtest therefore to have committed my money to the bankers: and at my coming I should have received my own with usury. 28 Take ye away therefore the talent from him and give it him that hath ten talents. 29 For to every one that hath shall be given, and he shall abound: but from him that hath not, that also which he seemeth to have shall be taken away. 30 And the unprofitable servant, cast ye out into the exterior darkness. There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 31 And when the Son of man shall come in his majesty, and all the angels with him, then shall he sit upon the seat of his majesty. 32 And all nations shall be gathered together before him: and he shall separate them one from another, as the shepherd separateth the sheep from the goats: 33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on his left. 34 Then shall the king say to them that shall be on his right hand: Come, ye blessed of my Father, possess you the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry, and you gave me to eat: I was thirsty, and you gave me to drink: I was a stranger, and you took me in: 36Naked, and you covered me: sick, and you visited me: I was in prison, and you came to me. 37Then shall the just answer him, saying: Lord, when did we see thee hungry and fed thee: thirsty and gave thee drink? 38 Or when did we see thee a stranger and took thee in? Or naked and covered thee? 39 Or when did we see thee sick or in prison and came to thee? 40 And the king answering shall say to them: Amen I say to you, as long as you did it to one of these my least brethren, you did it to me. 41 Then he shall say to them also that shall be on his left hand: Depart from me, you cursed, into everlasting fire, which was prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me not to eat: I was thirsty and you gave me not to drink. 43 I was a stranger and you took me not in: naked and you covered me not: sick and in prison and you did not visit me. 44 Then they also shall answer him, saying: Lord, when did we see thee hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison and did not minister to thee? 45 Then he shall answer them, saying: Amen: I say to you, as long as you did it not to one of these least, neither did you do it to me. 46 And these shall go into everlasting punishment: but the just, into life everlasting.’
The Douay-Rheims Bible
(1554)interview with William Esteb (Part I) by Dr. Matt Hammett
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