Who We Are
Led by the dynamic couple Matthew
& Jaylee Lister
The team at Align is dedicated to seeing pain management done better. Matthew walked through the symptoms management system himself during his decade long pain journey which included a dozen epidural cortisone injections, pain meds, physical therapy, and multiple failed back surgeries. Through his unique lens, he felt firsthand how uncaring, unfocused, and ineffective the pain management system was.
Jaylee’s training in kinesiology in New Zealand put a unique perspective and drive in her to seek better solutions to pain management. She is motivated to look at and care about the whole person and not just the site of injury.
Together they are working with their team, to reimagine pain management.
Our Core Values
These are the values that we dedicate ourselves to walking with and will hold ourselves accountable to. These are the values if are no longer present we would rather close our doors than continue our mission without them.
- Effectiveness. Our culture is built on effectiveness. We must be effective in each of our unique jobs as well as competent and knowledgeable in our field of expertise. We hold to the standard of doing things well. We would rather not do something, than to do it poorly. We only operate in win-win relationships. We choose no deal, rather than win-lose, lose-win, or lose-lose.
- Joy. Our culture is dedicated to choosing to bringing light into the lives of the people we interact with.
- Loving Kindness. We believe a culture of loving-kindness is a place where people feel seen and honored, where healthy relationships are built, where joy is present, and where trust can flourish.
- Trust. Our culture cultivates, and only operates in, high-trust relationships. A high-trust culture breeds healthy communication, and a joyful, open-hearted environment.
- Hope. Our culture is dedicated to bringing hope to the hopeless.
Our Core Purpose
We bring hope, truth and wisdom into people's movement lives and pain journeys.
Our Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BHAG)
Our goal is to touch the lives of 10 million people in pain.
We dedicate ourselves to equipping 10,000 people to become PainSmart. Additionally, we dedicate ourselves to equipping 1,000 PainSmart Practitioners who will each dedicate themselves to equip 10,000 people to become PainSmart.
Matthew Lister founded Align after being in severe chronic low back pain for over a decade. His pain journey started when he injured his back in his high school PE class. He fractured three vertebrae, tore a disc, had two bulging discs, and damaged his L5 nerve root. He walked through multiple rounds of physical therapy, massage therapy, chiropractic, acupuncture, a dozen cortisone injections, a discogram, and a 3 level spinal fusion. He spent a decade on a cane and on pain meds. Through that long, painful, and frustrating journey he realized our medical system is truly designed for acute care and it is woefully set up to serve people in chronic pain. In his words, “if you are in chronic pain trying to go through the medical system, you are essentially a square peg being beating through a round hole.”
He discovered, in his words, “chronic pain problems are always a combination of joint dysfunction problems, joint degeneration problems, inflammation problems, peripheral nervous system problems, and mindset/central nervous system problems. Every chronic pain problem is always a combination of at least three of these issues, creating the persons total chronic pain experience. The problem is you go to a specialist, say an orthopedic surgeon, and they can only see through the key hole of their specialty so they look for something they can fix surgically, ie your joint degeneration. The problem is, they are only looking at 1/5th of your total pain problem. Even if they do surgery, they are at best fixing a fraction of your total problem. This is why most surgeries have such poor success rates. The same thing applies if you go to a pain management doctor. They will look for some way to help you, so they offer you a cortisone injection to help with your inflammation, but they aren’t looking for the underlying cause of why the inflammation was there in the first place.”
Matthew continued, “I was sent from one doctor to another getting asked if I wanted pain pills, muscle relaxers, cortisone injections, more physical therapy, another surgery. I was beyond frustrated. What I wanted was to find out what was wrong and how to fix the problem so I could get back to living my life, but no one was offering me that. So I went and built a place that would do that for me and others. I built a place that walks with people through their pain journeys, equips them to walk with wisdom, and teaches them to step into their story and become the hero.”
“I wanted to reimagine “pain management” from the ground up. What if we empowered people to be good stewards of their body? What if we educated them on how their body works, showed them where it wasn’t working, and how to fix it? What if we educated them on how to work a rationale process aimed at identifying the root cause of their pain problem? What if we educated them on targeted questions to ask their doctor to drive the diagnostic process toward a long term conclusion? What if we walked with them through their pain journey so they didn’t feel so alone?”
“If we could do that, that would be something special. That would be Smarter Pain Management.”