As massage therapists, bodyworkers, or physical therapists, we dedicate our lives to improve the health and well-being of others, but what about ourselves? Do we care for ourselves with the same enthusiasm?
When We Want To Heal Others But Fail In Healing Ourselves
Our desire is very noble, remarkable even; we want to help others live a better and more enjoyable life. There is absolutely nothing wrong with helping others, but in order to do it well, we must also keep track of how we ourselves are feeling and what our state of health is. Because if we work too long hours, massage too many clients, follow a poor diet, do not find the time to exercise or stretch, struggle with finances, etc…this will affect our overall well-being and also our capacity to heal, and we will not be able to help our clients as we would want to.
Paying attention to ourselves is not selfish nor does it take away from our clients, on the contrary, it means investing in ourselves so that we can be the best possible massage therapist or bodyworker and achieve amazing long-lasting results on our clients. Being conscious of that our own well-being affects our capacity to heal others is being responsible and taking our job seriously.
The Responsible Massage Therapist Achieves The Most
So how do we become responsible in our massage profession and make sure we always give the best of us? First of all by taking care of ourselves on a basic level, meaning that we eat a balanced diet, drink plenty of water, try to exercise and especially stretch after a long workday, take some time for relaxing, etc.
We also need to define how many massages we are able to do per day. So how many clients can we book per day? This may vary also according to the type of massage or treatment that we are applying, and who our client is, but basically the idea is to know our limit and not to go beyond it. If we stay within our green zone we will be able to truly give the best of ourselves, have more success in healing others, and really enjoy what we do. If we step outside of it, the quality of our massages will reduce and we are more likely to suffer from injuries, fatigue and even burn-out.
We should try to take breaks when we feel the need to. A good idea might be to schedule breaks throughout the day, so maybe book appointments a bit further apart from each other but have that time to gather our strength, even if it means closing up 30min later. This is of course easier when you have your own massage practice or beauty salon, but even if you are an employee you can suggest small breaks in between massages.
And last but not least, we need to define our prices and stick to them. As massage therapists we are sometimes forced to mix business with pleasure; our fiend has a neck pain and asks us to please take a look at that, at a dinner party our cousin asks us to please massage his lower back as he has been having a hard time sitting long periods of time, we give discounts to our family members, etc. We need to define the value of our time and work, as well as of course study competitor prices, and set our rates accordingly. Sure we can offer the occasional discount or free massage, but if we do it too often it might have a big effect on our monthly earnings and decrease our motivation.
I would love to hear your thoughts on how we as massage therapists can take care of ourselves better? Talking about self-care, when was the last time you did something for yourself and what was it?
Wishing you a meaningful day ahead,