Short answer: Yes, please.
Long Answer: Yes, please.
Massage is great. You know this. But it’s not always a great idea.
As cold and flu season approaches again, it’s important that you know when it may be necessary to cancel your appointment.
When you are sick, your body needs rest. It’s strange to think about it this way, but receiving massage is an active task, it is not entirely rest. Massage causes change in the body, and your body has to work to maintain stability. Getting a massage when you are sick takes attention away from infection-fighting. That’s no good.
You’re not going to be cozy on the massage table. Sure, it sounds like a warm squishy massage table would be great. But the moment you put your already-stuffy head into that face cradle, you’ll realize the error of your ways. Gravity and pressure are not your friend here. Even if I do a great face massage to drain your sinuses, you’ll likely feel worse when you get off the table.
You could get me sick. Since most of the common winter viruses are contagious even before symptoms show up, I could pass the germs along to more clients before I even know it’s happening.
Further, when I get sick, I have to cancel clients and take a few days off work. I work for myself, with no paid sick days to compensate for lost wages. Sure, as a responsible business owner I have a fund for these situations. But I would rather use that fund for a jet ski or a fancy new oil holster. So I’m gonna try to stay germ-free this winter.
So it’s a deal. You’ll cancel so as not to infect me and my massage room, and I’ll do the same for you. We’ll keep each other safe.
When to cancel
If you have nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea in the past 24 hours, or are still feeling under the weather from a recent bout of such things.
If you’ve had a fever in the past 24 hours, or fever-related symptoms. This includes chills, aches, and fatigue. Even if you’re keeping the fever down with medicine, you’re still sick. The fever counts.
If you are itchy, runny, and/or sneezy, and you’re not 100% certain it’s seasonal allergies..
If you are coughing constantly, or just a lot.
If someone in your household is ill and you are feeling at all funky, please cancel.
There is often some gray area here, especially if you are in the recovery phase of a virus or bacterial infection. If you’re unsure about your situation, please call me before your appointment and we can make a decision together.
It’s not hard to think up great ways to treat yourself. We’d all love a spa day topped off with a meal prepared and served by someone else. Maybe get a sitter for the night, so the little angels are asleep when we get home. Or just a morning where the cat doesn't wake you up by sitting on your windpipe.
But for every article about self-care, I roll my eyes at least 12 times and think "Who can afford that?" Yes, it would be great to have an afternoon to myself and a bucket of fried chicken and a cookie dough chaser. But that's not particularly healthy.
I’m all about realistic self-care. That is, activities that aren't expensive, don't involve food, and will make you feel good about how you spent that time. Here's a list of my favorites (bonus: most of these you can do with kids).
Meditate, the easy way
If you're the kind of person who can't sleep during the day, napping can be more like torture. But guided meditation is a whole other story. It gives your mind something (easy) to do so the rest of you can relax a bit. There are plenty of free guided meditations online. Check out the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center website and the free version of the Headspace app, which has plenty of options to get you started.
Read a book
When was the last time you read for pleasure? Even if you can't get to your library, there are plenty of free ebooks on Amazon, and your local library may have a free online borrowing program. Or reread some of your favorite books from childhood if you have them hanging around.
If you choose the topic right, learning is great self-care. Pick a topic for FUN. Don't feel like you need to learn something pertinent to your work or a current hobby. Check out Coursera, MIT or Harvard to start. (But there are PLENTY of sources for free online classes, do your own searching, too!)
Bust out a piece for paper and draw something. Even if you don't have fancy pencils or crayons or markers, you can play with shading and pressure and make something cool. There are plenty of free coloring pages you can download and print out.
For nearly every song out there, there's a karaoke accompaniment channel on YouTube. For reals. Crank it up and let ‘er rip. You’re a stress-free superstar now.
And when all else fails: Nap
Put your jammies on and take a nap. In your bed. Not all jammed up on the couch with the TV on. Close the shades in your bedroom and hunker down for a proper sleep.
There. You don’t have to spend money or fill your belly to feel great and treat yourself well!
This can be a hectic time of year for most people. It's easy to get swept up in the hustle and bustle. Sometimes it's hard to remember to be fully present. Try this breathing exercise I learned from Dr. Weil. It's called "4:7:8"
1. Exhale completely through your mouth. As you do make a "whooshing" sound.
2. Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose and count to 4
3. Hold your breath for a count of 7
4. Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound,
to a count of 8
5. This is one breath. Now inhale again and repeat the cycle three more times for a total of 4 breaths.
Massage Gift Baskets
You've bought a massage gift certificate for your loved one. Now what? Make that present extra special with a massage basket. Assemble a basket full of goodies designed to promote relaxations. Here are 10 suggestions for what you can include along with the massage gift certificate.
2. Bath salts/bubbles
4. Slippers / socks
5. Comfy pajamas
6. Essential oils
7. Neck pillow
8. Soothing music
9. Herbal tea
10. Soft blanket