After recently receiving both my Diploma in Holistic Health Practice and Certificate in Wellness Consulting, I began to ponder what it took to make it to this level. After nearly five years studying, I realized that it all boiled down to one key element: perseverance.
By: Tim Grutzius, HHP, ACHS Ambassador
My journey into the world of natural medicine began in early 2008 when I realized that I was more than halfway through my career as a Lieutenant/Paramedic with the Alsip Fire Department. During my tenure of aiding those in need, I have observed a common thread with all my patients: most of them took what seemed to be a pharmacy of medications of which none seemed to improve their quality of life. I thought to myself, "There has to be better choices than this to stave off chronic illness and disease." I knew in my heart that there was another mission in life for me after the fire department.
It was around this time that an epiphany occurred. I was watching a new T.V. program in which one of the characters was introduced as an acupuncture student. I became intrigued and began a Google search into alternative and complementary (natural) medicine, which led me to what was then called the Australasian College of Health Sciences, now American College of Healthcare Sciences. After careful consideration, I enrolled in the Holistic Health Practice diploma program, and away I went.
Anyway, back to perseverance. I had not taken a college-level class since 1986, and after looking at the curriculum I knew I was in for a great challenge as online learning was an entirely new arena for me. The driving force behind my perseverance was that I wanted to continue to help others, but this time from a natural versus allopathic perspective.
I set aside dedicated time each day, week, month, and year to accomplish the goals set out in every aspect of my coursework. When asked at the end of course survey if I put in at least nine hours per week, I could answer emphatically, yes (probably more). Asking clients to put their complete trust in me is an awesome responsibility. Therefore, greater command of the subject matter will most likely result in better outcomes for clients as set forth in a natural medicine protocol specifically designed for them. I was guided through this process by several great instructors: Mary Fry, Deborah Halverson, Lauren Shapiro, Dani Silverman, and countless others to whom I am eternally grateful.
What does this have to do with you the student? I challenge each and every one of you to do the same: use what brought you to ACHS as your guiding beacon, set aside time each day for your studies, seek guidance from your instructors, and participate with full earnest in your classroom discussions and activities. One piece of advice I offer is that perseverance will be your greatest virtue when there are the inevitable setbacks along the way.
For instance, more than three-quarters of the way through my last class (Nat 306: Holistic Health Consulting & Business Skills Online, Fall 2012) my Dad unexpectedly died. Dani Silverman encouraged me not to worry about the school work during that time, but I knew that my Dad would have not wanted it that way. After all, he always admired my sense of perseverance. I pushed through the tears and sorrow and passed with flying colors. Thanks, Dani, for all your support.
I am currently working to establish a wellness coaching and education business, which seeks to assist public servants (fire, police, teachers) and current or veteran members of the Armed Forces. I have also been tapped by my department to become an Ace Certified Personal Trainer, which will add yet another dimension to my future endeavors.
I am proud to serve as an Ambassador to ACHS (a school that has given me a new lease on life), and encourage any student in need of assistance to reach out to me so that I may share the lessons I learned on the road to a more healthy and balanced life. Always remember: great rewards are reaped through perseverance.
Yours in health,
Tim Grutzius, HHP
P.S. This is a very inspiring story that exemplifies perseverance: http://youtu.be/qX9FSZJu448