Self care for massage therapists is one of the most essential part of being a massage therapist. What does it matter what training or techniques you know if you are too tired, sick, burned out or even injured from not taking care of yourself enough to support you through your work.
One of the biggest things is getting regular massage. I know for me I always used to trade doing massages with my friends which worked fine for the most part but I never realized what a drain it was for me to have to give a massage just to get one. When I started paying full price for a massage a few times a month and going to a womens spa a few times a month, it created a whole new meaning and outlook about self care.
The number of massages you can do in one week is limited by the number of hours that you physically are able to work. Massage is a physically demanding career but that just means you need to take better care of yourself. Everyone has their own physical limits that they have to determine for themselves. But you also have to consider – what are you willing to do to be able to work more and do more massages and yes ultimately make more money. So many massage therapists limit themselves to under 20 massages a week. I know I have for most of my career. I even created these websites to have another source of income so that I wouldn’t have to do so many massages. But that limits the amount of money that you can make. Yes I know – it isn’t all about the money but do you know how much you could be making if you did work 30 hours a week doing massage? If the average for a massage is $60 if you did 30 that would be $7560 a month. Could you get a few massages a week on that? I would think so. You could also hire a personal trainer to get in the best shape in your life which is another part of taking care of yourself. There are also many other things -yoga, tai chi, meditation and other things.
Self care also involves much more than just getting regular massage. It is also things like working only on nourishing clients and saying no to the ones that are draining. It is about setting your fees so that you won’t feel resentful when working on draining people – but oh you aren’t supposed to be working on them anyways! It is about doing the marketing and promotional things you need to do to get the clients you need and keep with your marketing program until it works. That means you do something – evaluate it’s success or lack of success and do something different.
How long it takes for you to be successful will depend on how well you learn from your efforts. It is also not giving up after the first mailing or first open house fails to bring in the slew of clients you were hoping for. Marketing is an ongoing process and it can be difficult to keep up with it when you are busy. The massage business has ups and downs just like anything else but you can alleviate the strain of the ups and downs by marketing, planning financially and taking care of yourself.
It is also about taking vacations and getting the rest you need when you need it. It is about eating right, getting good sleep, exercising, stretching or doing what you need to feel good enough to do 30 massages a week.
What do you do for self care? Do you keep up with it and do it regularly or only when your body gets into pain or you feel stressed?