This article appeared in the September 2014 issue of “Bowen Hands, The Journal of The Bowen Therapy Academy of Australia”
“Ah huh. Yeah. That’s right. We’ve got our “Bowen Cred” going on!” Dena Bowen and Belinda Wilkinson get ready for the “May 2014 International Women’s Show” in Novi Michigan. “Bowen Cred” is the street slang version of having street credibility, and they have definitely earned their “credibility!” That means they have talked the Bowen talk, walked the Bowen walk, and have done the Bowen roll on as many people as possible. They do it because they know it can really change people’s lives.
“We have traveled many miles, burned the rubber off our tires, drank bad coffee, and have eaten terrible gas station food late at night. During August we have put our booth up in the middle of the street, and burned our feet on the hot pavement at the Melon Festival in Howell Michigan. And still….we continue on our mission to educate the public about the benefits of Bowenwork. We know that even a couple of Bowenwork moves can make a big difference for people. “Bowenwork is very transformational on many levels.”
“This is the second year that the Michigan Bowenwork Practitioners have participated in the 2014 International Women’s Show. More than 47,000 people walked through the front door, and may be introduced to Bowenwork for the first time. We are aware that we are representing Bowenwork globally, and all of us dress professionally with the Bowen logo on our shirts. It is important to talk with integrity and honesty when educating the public about Bowenwork. Our efforts will have a direct impact on our practices, as well all the other practitioners in Michigan.”
“The International Women’s Show is a long four day show and the Michigan Bowenwork practitioners may work on fifty to sixty people per day. The secrets of not getting fatigued or sore legs is to wrap the ankles for support, as well as to pace yourselves by taking frequent breaks. If we are not busy we treat each other on the table, and this way we never have an empty table. We expend a lot of energy doing shows, but it comes back to us in so many ways” says Dena Bowen.
Doing public demonstrations is part of the Bowenwork marketing strategy. Research has found that people have to see you at least five times in order for your business to become legitimate. Doing demonstrations also gives Bowenwork Practitioners the ability to practice on every body type that is out there. Many times we only make enough money to pay back the price of the booth rental, but that’s not why we are there. We are there to connect with the public and promote the work of Tom Bowen. After a show each of us may have twenty to thirty calls for Bowenwork sessions. Doing at least four demonstrations a year is enough to keep new people walking through your door.
Dena Bowen of Brighton Michigan is a Band One Bowenwork Instructor, and has been practicing since 2008. “I follow the rule of 10,000 hours of practice makes perfect practice. I promised myself when I first started as a student that I would do at least one Bowenwork session a day. By 4:00 pm if I hadn’t done a Bowenwork session I would start calling people, and soon had people on speed dial to help me practice Bowenwork. There is always someone out there to practice on.”
“The first time I did a demonstration was at a raw vegan festival. I did it on my own, but was not prepared for the heat and thunderstorms. I was overwhelmed by the amount of people that wanted a Bowenwork session, and couldn’t even take a break. That was the last time I did a demonstration on my own, and now realize that it is truly a group effort.”
Belinda Wilkinson of Brighton, Michigan began her Bowenwork career in April of 2010. She had the opportunity to practice when she traveled to Shipshewana Indiana, and began her work in an Amish community. “The Amish are very interested in alternative care, and immediately understood the benefit of Bowenwork” says Belinda. The Amish families drive up in their horse and buggies to an Amish host house, and patiently wait for hours for their turn. Belinda travels weekly with 5 tables, and can do up to thirty or forty people in one day. Everyone in the Amish family gets a Bowenwork session. Bowenwork has become so popular in Shipshewana that Belinda may spend the night with an Amish host, and work on more Amish families for a second day in a row.
Belinda is a powerhouse when it comes to doing demonstrations, and has extensive knowledge from doing craft shows since early childhood. Her greatest gift is being able to connect with the public and share her knowledge of Bowenwork. Belinda radiates her passion and enthusiasm of Bowenwork, and soon people catch her excitement. There is no end to opportunities for Belinda and Bowenwork.
Mary Dodich of Brighton, Michigan also participated in the May 2014 International Women’s Show for the second year. Mary was introduced to Bowenwork during a demonstration in 2011, and immediately signed up to learn Bowenwork. “While learning Bowenwork I would often hear the Tom Bowen phrase of ‘trust the work.’ In participating in public demonstrations I am able to see the essence of this phrase in action. I often see immediately the transformation of people from pain to relief bringing smiles and joy to their faces” said Mary.
This year six Bowenwork students also participated in the 2014 International Women’s Show passing out flyers and explaining to people what Bowenwork is. Janet Vecchio, Roxanne Petrie, Karen Sweger, Kathy Jerore, Melissa Labadie, and Colette Gilbert did a great job of stepping outside their comfort zone, and challenged them to put their new knowledge of Bowenwork to work. Explaining what Bowenwork is, and how it works can sometimes be the most difficult part. This was a great learning experience for the students, and exposed them to what it takes to put up a booth, and talk to the people in a professional manner.
Dena, Belinda and Mary definitely follow the 10,000 hour rule of practicing, and doing public demonstrations gives Bowenwork Practitioners the marketing edge to make Bowenwork a household name. “Michigan has become the fastest growing group of Bowenwork practitioners in the United States, and all of us share our experience, time, banners, tables and resources to help everyone promote their businesses here in Michigan. Bowenwork is easy to sell, and it is easy to sell something that you are passionate about” say Dena Bowen.
“Our advice to all the Bowenwork practitioners is to get out there, and earn your Bowen street credibility. If you are shy about public speaking pair up with someone who loves to talk. Everyone has their own specialty and strength in a group dynamic. When you spread the word of Bowenwork it will come back to you in so many ways; more ways and opportunities than you can ever imagine.”