James Carter is a professional acupuncturist, and the brains behind Luna Acupuncture & Wellness LLC. His office serves people from all walks of life, ages, and stages of their healing journeys. Among the variety of services, he offers include acupuncture and moxibustion, cupping, longevity medicine, nutritional guidance, acupressure, among other techniques of holistic modalities from Chinese medicine. James’s office has grown to become a success due to his passion for service and helping others reach their goals. He is so passionate about it that he has over the years studied with some world-renowned physicians and top brains in the fields of holistic, natural, and alternative medicine. This has helped him to learn dynamic and creative ways of treating some of the most difficult conditions people present with. James is also an expert in lost art of acupuncture diagnosis which involves careful examination of the ear, pulse, and tongue to determine ill patterns of health. He offers anyone a free 15-minute consultation to determine the root cause of their ailments and what would be the next steps to take to create an improvement in the condition.
How did you get started in this business?
I decided to pursue graduate education in acupuncture and holistic healing after becoming pain free receiving treatments myself. I had considered other health professions, but nothing except acupuncture worked for me. I have always been interested in ancient Chinese medicine methods when I was younger, so I wanted to get involved in the field.
How do you make money?
I run a service-based business and I receive compensation for providing clients with treatments and consultation. When my clients come in for a service they would like, such as acupuncture, I mark them down for what they asked, and we have the treatment done on the available day they requested. After the service is done, I am paid for the service and I always strive to make sure the client is fully satisfied with their treatment.
How long did it take for you to become profitable?
It took about one month to build the business make a profit. Fortunately, I have been able to put myself out in the open and have more clients spread the word about what I do. Getting myself out in the open and trying to make my business flourish was not easy, but it was a process that required a lot of moving parts. New businesses usually have a hard time when it comes to making money, but I am very blessed I was able to make profit soon after I opened.
When you were starting out, was there ever a time you doubted it would work? If so, how did you handle that?
Absolutely. I think it is normal for anyone to be nervous stepping into their own business. I was definitely confident in myself when I started out, but there were times where I thought about the chances of me struggling. I handled the issue by tracing back to the reason why I want to work in this field, which was so I can help my clients in the best way I can. I needed to reflect and talk with myself to understand why I am doing, and it helped me to handle any doubts I had about the business. Thankfully, I am very passionate about the practice of acupuncture and Chinese medicine and knew in my heart if people knew what I offered; I could help them.
How did you get your first customer?
My first client came through networking in my local area. I had just started out and I was a baby in the world of business in my area. I eventually started doing some networking with people who lived in my neighborhood and beyond, and I finally gained a customer after that.
What is one marketing strategy (other than referrals) that you’re using that works really well to generate new business?
I like to go to community events in my local area to talk about my services. Everyone loves to connect with someone who does not seem manufactured or disingenuous, so it is always a good tip to go out to talk to people any chance you can. Make sure you make meaningful connections and put yourself out there for your brand and your business.
What is the toughest decision you’ve had to make in the last few months?
I have not made a decision I would consider particularly tough in the last few months. COVID-19 has been tough on many businesses, but we have pulled through without any major glitches. I have adjusted the way my business works to avoid any chance of spreading the virus, so implementing masks and increased sanitation are necessary. It is a blessing they have not negatively impacted my work other than taking some extra time which I am fine with.
What do you think it is that makes you successful?
I feel I work with passion, and a commitment to do everything I can to serve my clientele. I think it is important to offer compassion to everyone, even if we have never stood in their shoes. Success means something different to everyone, but the heart of success is making sure you know how to engage with everyone in a respectful and charming way.
What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
Seeing people achieve healing from physical, mental and emotional issues makes me very happy. Often people with chronic conditions are emotionally drained, when I see them improve and their attitude change it is the most gratifying part of this work for me. I will never forget the time one of my older clients said I helped her arthritis issues she had for over 10 years, and it made me so happy to help her from such a painful condition. This work really puts a smile on your face when you can help someone who has been hurting for so long.
What does the future hold for your business? What are you most excited about?
I feel the future is bright! The wellness industry is on a growth trajectory globally and we are right in the middle of it. I am excited to see the results from clients after I work with them, because seeing them happy about their bodies feeling healthier and more energetic is amazing. Everyone that comes through my door is from a different walk of life, so it will be very interesting to watch my clients grow and see new faces.
What business books have inspired you?
One of my favorite books about healing and business is “Soul over Matter” by my teacher Dr. Zhi Gang Sha, the book is filled with inspiration and wisdom. When I read this book, it really made me think about how we see ourselves and how to reflect on who we really are. Another book I love is “Kindfulness” by Ajahn Brahm, it is really about healing within ourselves and managing our feelings in a healthy way. After reading it, I have found it never hurts anyone to be kind and respectful to everyone. Both books are must reads.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
I would advise my younger self to work on self-awareness as this is key to fulfilling your potential. There is always a chance to grow and change, so I would encourage my younger self to take the opportunity to understand myself better and just go for it. Oftentimes, it can be hard to work on yourself, but it is not a race. Learning is a process, and I would want my younger self to grasp that concept and be aware of who I am and my abilities.
Are you willing to be a mentor? If so, how should someone contact you?
Yes, I would be willing to be a mentor! I would love to have someone come and learn about what I do and have the opportunity to teach. Anyone seeking mentorship can call me at 503-853-2866 and we can see if we can arrange a way for our relationship to begin.