Independence is defined as the quality or state of being independent. Essentially, not dependent.
Having just celebrated the 4th of July, which we know is celebrated in honor of our freedom and independence.
On this day, I always think about independence and how honored I feel to have found massage therapy to create my own independence. Yes, it seems odd to celebrate massage therapy on the 4th, but if you think about it, massage therapy can be your vehicle to true independence.
How Massage Therapy Can Create Independence:
1 - create your own freedom
You can schedule your massage sessions, workshops and bodywork clients at times when it is convenient for you, while at the same time honoring their time as a client. Yes, we’ve heard the mantra “the client is always right”, and this is true in many cases. However, doesn’t it make sense to schedule your appointments when you are feeling your best so you can give them the best service? Doesn’t it also make sense to schedule your appointments so you will have time to have a life, too? There is a balance and fine art to doing this, but it can be done, so everyone is happy.
2 - don’t be controlled by others
Do what you need to do, to be happy, and feel in control of your business. You do not have to only work in one location as a massage therapist. “Have table . . . will travel.” The opportunities are endless. You can work in a spa, hospital, healthcare setting, clinic, private practice, teaching infant massage or even providing pediatric massage. You can do it all if you want – that’s the beauty and independence of massage therapy.
3 - don’t rely on others for your livelihood
Be creative. Make your calls, meet others, and spread the word about your therapeutic sessions. I hear a lot of therapists complaining about the “recession”. This is no time to sit around waiting on clients to call you. Waiting by your phone, with an unhappy face, is not going to make it ring. Call your clients, email them, send a newsletter, start something new, add something special to your practice, and do what you need to do to make it happen!
So, let freedom ring fellow massage therapists, create your independence and follow your passion!
06 July 2011
30 May 2011
I was driving in the rainy streets of Chicago a couple of days ago, flipping through radio stations when I paused to hear the next song. It was John Mayer’s “Waiting on the World to Change.” In that moment, driving along, those lyrics really resonated with me. I got to thinking . . .why are people waiting on the world change? Why are we not doing what we can, to change the things we can? Mahatma Gandhi said “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” I agree with this!
So, how do you start? It can be something that appears so little, such as coming through security at the airport. I was just in Chicago Midway Airport and I saw a mom was struggling to put her shoes back on and get everything stuffed back into her bags. Her little daughter struggled to get her bag off of the security conveyor. She cried to her mom for help. So, I reached up and took the bag, carried it over to her mom and the little girl followed. No, I didn’t have my shoes on yet and, yes, my items were still sitting on the conveyor belt. It didn’t matter . . . this little girl needed a hand. Not a big deal, but something you should do. Everyone else was standing by, worried about getting their belongings and putting on their shoes. No one else acknowledged the little girl or even paused to help her. Imagine if that was your child or you as a kid. All of these busy adults just standing by watching you scared, needing help and unsure of what to do. This makes me question what’s happening in the world.
Ask yourself . . "Why are we too busy to pause and help a child a need?"
I have a lot of questions as to how we got here in the world today. So busy . . .too busy to help others. I don’t think so. We are too caught up in what is important to us in the moment, and we don’t pause to take a look at the bigger picture. How our little acts of kindness make differences.
It is important that we practice these small acts of kindness. When you practice kindness, kindness comes back to you. As much as we might feel to make a difference, we have to do something larger than ourselves to make a positive impact, we don’t. Helping someone cross the street, returning a wallet that was lost or keeping your eye on a child that appears to be alone in a public place, just to be sure they get back to their caregiver, is something that makes a difference. Everyone can and should do something every day. These acts of kindness add up to a much better place, a place where together we change those things that need to be changed. It is together that we make a difference.
Stop waiting on the world to change, CHANGE IT!
29 April 2011
You Are What You Eat
Put down your Coke and start reading. Yes, everyone has the day when cheesecake or cold pizza seems like the best breakfast option. I am no exception, and cheesecake is my favorite, but I also know that if we don’t take good care of ourselves now we will pay for it in the future. So, ask your self, “What are we doing to our kids?”
According the CDC, Childhood obesity has more than tripled in the past 30 years. The prevalence of obesity among children aged 6 to 11 years increased from 6.5% in 1980 to 19.6% in 2008. The prevalence of obesity among adolescents aged 12 to 19 years increased from 5.0% to 18.1%.
In order for our kids to succeed in life, they need to have a good start.
Michelle Obama promotes the "Let's Move!" campaign to target childhood obesity. It is a great idea! However, the reality is that our children simply take in too many calories and then do not burn them off. They sit in front of the TV, play video games and eat junk food. It is important to help our children make the right choices or they will suffer the consequences.
Childhood obesity has many health impacts:
• Overweight and obese youth are more likely to have risk factors for cardiovascular disease, such as high cholesterol or high blood pressure. In a population-based sample of 5- to 17-year-olds, 70% of obese youth had at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease.
• Children and adolescents who are obese are at greater risk for bone and joint problems, sleep apnea, and social and psychological problems such as stigmatization and poor self-esteem.
• Obese youth are more likely than youth of normal weight to become overweight or obese adults, and therefore more at risk for associated adult health problems, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, several types of cancer, and osteoarthritis.
Make a Positive Impact
For children who have diabetes use massage. Researchers at the Touch Research Institute have found children with diabetes who receive massage therapy have improved compliance with insulin and food regulation, improved mean glucose levels, and symptomatic improvement
Let’s start a Food Revolution (kudos Jamie Oliver)!
Choose healthy options for your children
Make eating fun and interesting (fun food & different colors doesn’t hurt)
Let your child help prepare their meals
Do More | Take a Closer Look Read More on Tina Allen's Column for Massage Today's Women in Bodywork Business Blog
14 April 2011
So much of our media today is flooded with the increase of awareness around bullying in our schools. What used to be a few names called in the school yard has turned into viral videos exposing our children to hate on the internet. With YouTube and Facebook usage at an all time high, children find easy access to commit Cyber bullying, and do not necessarily see the long term harm in posting their comments for all to see.
Malcom Smith of the University of New Hampshire’s Cooperative Extension Service says some studies show that up to half of all public students are subject to bullying. Smith also states that he believes children in school today are the “meanest ever”.
It is becoming more and more apparent that for many children, the saying, “sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me”, is not true. For eighth-grade Connecticut student Alye Pollack, daily life at Bedford Middle School involves being tormented and called names by her classmates. She turned to YouTube to get her message out about her experience.
For many children the relentless teasing and bullying by other classmates causes depression, or even worse self-injurious behaviors such as cutting or the unfortunate reality that some take their own life unable to deal with the teasing, name calling and harassment.
Read more on Tina Allen's Column Massage Today | Women in Bodywork Business Blog
14 February 2011
24 October 2010
The Liddle Kidz Foundation Global outreach for 2010 focuses on orphaned and abandoned children in Vietnam.
FirstGiving - LIDDLE KIDZ FOUNDATION - Liddle Kidz Foundation_Vietnam Outreach
With nurturing, compassion and touch therapy, children will develop and reach their full potential. We strive to address infant and children’s critical tactile needs by working directly with their families and healthcare providers in pediatric hospitals, hospices, and orphanages to provide comprehensive nurturing services, consultation, education, program development and support. We are committed to furthering the development of touch therapy services for vulnerable and underserved populations internationally. Through education and support we work to create replicable and sustainable change.
At Liddle Kidz it is our true belief that children are our greatest gift and should be treated with extraordinary care!
Thanks to the exceptional commitment of our trained volunteer therapists, Liddle Kidz Foundation is making a difference in the lives of vulnerable children everyday.
Since being founded in 2005, the Liddle Kidz Foundation has continued to use the power of touch: bringing essential care to children in need.
Would you like to bring nurturing touch to orphanaed children aroudn the world?
View www.LiddleKidz.org for more information!
04 September 2010
You might be surprised at the reaction I receive whenever I tell parents and others that "Kids have stress, too!" Some people say, "I can see that. . ." and others look at me crossed-eye and say, "I wish I had their stress" (then huff & blow it off like kids do not have stress). Well, the reality is Kids do have Stress!
According to Saturday's New York Times:
Doctors say that frequent headaches and migraines are among the most common childhood health complaints, yet these problems get surprisingly very little attention. It is also noted that children complain more of headaches during the school year as opposed to the summer break.
Many doctors note that the real issues behind these headaches may be changes in the child's sleep schedule, including getting up early for school and staying up late studying/doing homework, not drinking water or skipping breakfast and weather changes.
Even just the stress of peer pressure and over scheduling can contribute to childhood stress. As parents and caregivers, it becomes even more important during the school year, to find ways to connect with our kids and give them tools to relax.
- One idea, spend time everyday calmly talking with your child. Don't worry about homework or other school related items during this time. Use it as just a time to connect and share
- Try something fun together - take a bike ride, try some yoga or play a game
- Let your kids blow off some steam. Don't enforce that they get down to work on their homework as soon as they arrive home. They've already spent all day "working" - give them a break
- Use massage to reconnect, share experiences of the day and kick up everyones Oxytocin!