Why Grit is the Key to Thriving as an Osteopath

Understanding why grit is the key to thriving as an osteopath will help you to overcome the barriers you never thought you'd conquer.

What grit means for all osteopaths

When it comes to achieving success and making a real impact on your career as an osteopath, the concept of grit is your secret weapon.

Angela Duckworth’s book “Grit” is a treasure trove of insights that will completely change the way you approach your practice, whether you’re running your own clinic or working as an associate.

Let’s dive into the concept of grit and why it’s the key to thriving as an osteopath.

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Fuelling your osteopathic fire with passion and purpose

At the heart of every successful osteopath’s journey lies a powerful force: passion and purpose.

As you navigate the intricacies of your practice, understanding how passion and purpose intertwine with grit can reshape your approach to patient care and practice management.

The power of passion

Passion is what compels you to walk into your clinic every morning, eager to make a difference as an osteopath.

Passion fuels your dedication to the clinic’s success, motivating you to tackle the challenges that come with entrepreneurship. This energy translates into a strong work ethic that sets the tone for yourself, your team (if you have one) and impacts the overall clinic environment and culture.

The significance of purpose

Purpose serves as your guiding light. It shapes your decisions, from how you market your practice to finding the right practitioners for your clinic, anchoring your clinic in a clear direction. By merging your passion with a well-defined purpose, you create a dynamic foundation that drives your clinic’s growth and cultivates a meaningful presence within your local community.

Whatever your purpose, it guides your decisions, shapes your thinking and drives intention into every action you take.

Grit’s connection to passion and purpose

In the context of grit, passion and purpose serve as the foundation on which your perseverance is built. When faced with obstacles—whether they’re complex patient presentations, admin challenges or personal setbacks—your passion ignites your determination. It fuels your desire to find solutions, innovate and push forward.

Purpose, on the other hand, acts as your anchor during turbulent times. It reminds you why you embarked on this journey, grounding you and motivating you to overcome challenges. Even on the toughest days, your purpose can reignite your inner self, reminding you of the lives you’re impacting and the difference you’re making.

Having a growth mindset

Having a growth mindset in your toolkit for continuous improvement is essential all osteopaths.

At its core, a growth mindset is the belief that your abilities and skills can be developed through dedication, hard work and learning. This mindset contrasts starkly with the fixed mindset, which assumes that talents and intelligence are static traits. As an osteopath, a growth mindset opens doors to perpetual improvement and innovation.

Embracing a growth mindset means viewing challenges as opportunities for growth, rather than setbacks. It’s about being excited to learn from mistakes, welcome feedback and consistently seek ways to refine your technique approaches. With a growth mindset, you understand that your potential is boundless and that each day offers a chance to enhance your abilities.

A growth mindset in patient care

A growth mindset deeply influences your patient care approach. Instead of viewing patient cases as routine or unchangeable, approach each patient with curiosity and adaptability. You understand that every patient’s journey is unique and by continually learning and evolving, you can provide tailored solutions that align with their needs.

Moreover, your growth mindset resonates with your patients. They appreciate your willingness to explore different approaches and your commitment to their well-being. When you openly share your learning experiences and demonstrate a drive for improvement, you inspire trust and confidence, fostering a collaborative atmosphere where patients actively engage in their treatment plans.

Nurturing your growth mindset

Nurturing a growth mindset involves intentional practices. Regularly set aside time for self-assessment. Reflect on your strengths and areas where you’d like to grow. Create a learning plan that involves reading research articles, attending seminars or even seeking mentorship from experienced practitioners. Surround yourself with people who share your passion for growth, engaging in discussions that challenge and expand your perspectives.

Stay open to feedback, both from patients, practitioners and people you know. Constructive criticism is a valuable tool for improvement. Instead of feeling defensive, view feedback as a gift that offers insights into areas you can refine over time.

The gritty outcome

In summary, a growth mindset isn’t just a philosophical concept—it’s a tangible force that moves you towards continuous improvement. By embracing this mindset, you’re not just striving for short-term success; you’re laying the foundation for a truly fulfilling career.

The importance of deliberate practice

Deliberate practice is a purposeful approach to skill development that involves setting specific goals, maintaining focused attention, seeking feedback and refining performance iteratively.

It’s not about simply putting in hours; it’s about methodically honing your techniques to achieve mastery. At its core, deliberate practice challenges you to step out of your comfort zone.

Setting specific goals for patient care

Incorporating deliberate practice into your patient care starts with setting clear and specific goals. These goals should align with your patients’ needs. Instead of approaching each patient in a routine manner, deliberate practice prompts you to define measurable objectives that you aim to achieve for each patient.

For instance, if you’re helping a patient recover from a running injury, one goal may involve improving a certain movement pattern within a defined timeframe. This targeted goal becomes the focal point of your practice, guiding your techniques and interventions towards achieving meaningful outcomes for your patient.

Deliberate practice for clinic owners

Being a clinic owner demands a commitment to deliberate practice. This approach involves methodical refinement of every aspect of your clinic’s operations.

From streamlining administrative processes to optimising resource allocation, deliberate practice ensures that every action contributes to the clinic’s overall efficiency.

By focusing on continuous improvement, you not only enhance the quality of services but also create a culture of excellence within your team.

This disciplined approach has a ripple effect, resulting in heightened productivity, increased patient satisfaction via an easy and simple experience and a solid reputation that distinguishes your clinic amongst local competition.


As an osteopath, you’re no stranger to hard work and dedication. Yet, as “Grit” highlights, success is not solely about working endlessly. How’re you going to integrate grit into your everyday practice? Because if you do, you’ll make such an incredible impact on your career that you wish you knew this a long time ago.

Written by Alan Zaia M.Ost

Founder & CEO of Osteohustle. You’ll find Alan coaching osteopaths, travelling in a van or writing our weekly newsletter, The Hustle.

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