Eric Fishman spent the 90’s running a medical practice and an orchid nursery. Now he is combining his love for plants with his history of patient-care, to create aromatherapy products that anyone can use to feel great.
What do you do best?
I’ve always been really good at math and logic. As a child I used to be brought to the adults in my life and was asked multi-variable algebraic questions. This was a little bit before kindergarten. That continues to be what I do best - I analyze facts that come from different fields of thought and I amalgamate them into a new and interesting theory.
A friend of mine once said that if you want to be successful, don’t get really good at one thing. Get really good at two completely different things. My substantial knowledge of western medicine, including decades of operating on patients, and my interest in eastern medicine through practicing yoga and homeopathic remedies, has allowed me, along with my innate logical tendency, to come up with some rather novel ideas about how it is that MONQ does what it does.
What makes you the best?
In the process of becoming a yoga instructor, I’ve spent quite a lot of time in various yoga studios. During those years one of the foremost goals is get rid of the ego. Therefore it will be difficult for me to say what makes me the best!
Having said that, what makes me qualified to do what I’m doing is a very deep store of knowledge of western medicine, a newer set of knowledge of non-traditional alternative healthcare methodologies, and a tremendous desire to do something meaningfully beneficial for the world. Yes, that sounds trite, but that is the underlying principle behind all actions undertaken at MONQ.
In my medical practice, I was known as the physician who was least likely to operate. My ‘specialty’ was getting patients with various orthopedic conditions to feel better without using a scalpel. I employed a variety of homeopathic remedies as well as other more standard naturopathic modalities.
Obviously I had been taught standard anatomy, having dissected a cadaver in medical school, and having operated on many thousands of patients. I was perfectly familiar with the various nerve pathways throughout the body, and understood that if you inject an anesthetic into a nerve, that the pain emanating from that nerve will go away.
However, more importantly, I learned that putting needles in places that were non-standard, at least according to Grey’s Anatomy, could be very effective in relieving symptoms. I performed these procedures in thousands of patients, and as I studied the placement of the non-standard injections that were most effective, I realized that they were common acupuncture points. This fascinated me, and I vowed to look into the relationship between eastern and western medicine more carefully.
What are your aspirations?
After studying the field of forest therapy and understanding the phenomenal health benefits of just being in the forest. I emphasize the word being - this is not a brisk jog through the forest. It’s an experiential situation where you use all five senses. You see, hear, touch, taste, and in my humble opinion, most importantly, smell the various characteristics of a forest.
Forest therapy has shown to lower blood pressure, heart rate, increase natural killer cells, and decrease stress, among other benefits. I have developed a theory based on these results. I theorize that we are breathing in air that is a different composition than our ancestors, with regards to aromatic compounds and fewer plants and trees in our modern lives. I think this “terpene deficiency,” as I call it, is putting our health at a disadvantage.
One of my aspirations is to have this theory studied extensively to find out if, in fact, there is validity to it. If so, there would be a method of improving the health of billions of people fairly easily.
I guess my biggest successes were my medical practices. I opened up two of them - one in Northern Maine where I worked for three years and built a great reputation. I then moved to West Palm Beach and opened up a practice in 1988. When I left, it had more than a dozen doctors in four offices over multiple different counties. It was a major orthopedic practice in Southern Florida. I am really proud, though, that I did a 100 mile bike ride my last birthday.
Most Challenging Moment?
I have had the pleasure of spending a number of months at the Entrepreneur Center in Nashville. MONQ is the 14th company I have started on my own, and the first that I have taken seriously enough to learn how to run a business. As part of the training here, you learn about pivoting and changing direction. You learn that there are always failures involved in starting a business. One of the biggest challenges is learning that successful people have failures. I don’t take failure well. I was always the prodigy, the one who had the answer, and when I try something and it doesn’t work, it hurts me. My challenge has been to understand that failure is a part of success, and as above, to not let my ego get in the way of where I am going.
“Do the Right Thing.” It reminds me of a line in a movie wherein someone says “It’s easy to do the right thing when you know what the right thing to do is.” I think it’s important to know what the right thing is, but once you figure it out, you need to do the right thing.
My mom and dad, children, family, and friends, of course, but other than them? Jerry Garcia.
I love to travel so there have been a lot of places. I love the Grand Canyon. I really love all of the national parks in the US - I have driven through all 48 states that you can drive through without leaving the country. I also love Haleakala, a volcano in Hawaii. I think Japan and Mt. Fuji are wonderful as well. You didn’t ask, but one of my regrets, but not too late to change it, is having driving right past Mt. Fuji and not stopping to climb it. Strangely, I rented a car and drove around Japan for a few weeks (at the time I could read Japanese Kanji adequately to do so), and I’m always in a rush, and didn’t take the time to ‘smell the cherry blossoms’!
Besides MONQ, a Tesla automobile and my Kestral bicycle - I have put a lot of miles on that bicycle!
As it relates to MONQ, my current passion is to provide the healthiest, safest, most broad-based beneficial product that we can to the world, and test my hypothesis that terpenes really are as healthy as I believe they are!