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Many of us are feeling overwhelmed and indeed so muddled on where we stand with GDPR that we have “Ostrich Syndrome” – burying our heads in the sand hoping the whole topic will magically fade away. Although there is a massive amount of information available to us, deciding what is right for our situation can be confusing. Well, this was me a few weeks ago, GDPR nightmares and stress induced mental paralysation. Sound familiar?

As therapists we are extremely fortunate to have a choice of professional associations to whom we can belong, such as the Association of Reflexologists (AoR), the Federation of Holistic Therapist (FHT) and the Complementary Therapists Association (CThA) to name a few.   Often, we may begrudge paying our annual subscriptions but it is when we have amendments to the law such as GDPR that our membership becomes priceless.  Most associations have sort professional assistance to understand GDPR and how it impacts on therapist. So GDPR guidance specifically for therapists is available.

The “Ostrich Syndrome” cure in a few steps!

  1. Set aside a day to understand GDPR
  2. Go to the website of the association(s) you belong to and see read the guidelines and advice. Some associations have templates that you can adapt. Read the advice on the website before going to any Facebook pages, as although there may be sound advice given, there are a lot of contrary opinions that befuddle the brain.  The ICO website is the best place for information but it can be rather heavy reading.
  3. Sleep on it! Give yourself time to process the information. If need be, go through it again in a day or so.
  4. Make an ACTION PLAN. Make a list of the steps you need to take with time frames for completion. Break it down to bit size steps to fit in with your work/home schedule. Trying to do it all in one or two days may be daunting and guess what? Those Ostrich syndrome symptoms start appearing again.
  5. Work your plan. If at any stage you feel unsure, email or phone the ICO or your association(s) to get help.

Having completed my GDPR action plan following association membership advice, I presented it to my first client, who much to my bewilderment, exclaimed “GDPR how exciting”.  Seriously??    It was more like nightmarish!

Having read my privacy policy, she was duly impressed (a big thank you to the AoR) and but then commented “you need an extra bit to this”.  My client is a marketing professional and had unbeknown to me undertaken specialist GDPR training.  The “extra bit” is metamorphosing GDPR from nightmarish admin headache into a fabulous marketing opportunity to find out more about what treatments your clients would like or learn about. It may reveal a few surprises resulting clients booking for different treatments and give you a better understanding of each client’s needs.

Wow! I’ve gone from being totally stressed out about GDPR to WOW how exciting. I’m still working through my revised Ostrich cure Plan but with a positive and happy mind set -even spent some time the garden working on my plan during those lovely hot days a few weeks ago.

If you would like some clarity on GDPR, Lumiere College, are hosting an event on Saturday 5th May.  Give us call on 01858 440375 to book your place.


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