Massage Therapists work in what the general public would call a calm environment. Dim lights, relaxing music, blissful clients, no worries.
*the lights blare along with the sound of screeching tires bringing you to a halting stop*
The problem with stress is that it can eventually lead to burn-out and the potential for the therapist to quit practice completely if a healthy alternative is not found soon enough. When this happens, we loose a gifted individual who could have impacted many lives in a positive fashion within our profession.
Below are the basic types of practice many of us find ourselves in:
Therapist practicing in a spa or group setting.
Therapist in private practice.
On call therapist.
Therapist with multiple jobs and/or any combination of the above.
So, where do you fit in? And, what are your potential and given stressors on any day?
The potential for stress as a therapist is expansive. I suggest we take a look at some of the highlights.
- If you are practicing in a group setting the dynamics can be difficult when you have a conflict with one or more of the other therapists.
- In private practice you can easily have the weight and worry of the entire business resting on your shoulders.
- If you are on-call and working site to site, how often do you fight traffic and the weight of your table?
- And, let’s consider the therapist who is juggling two jobs and their private practice, or one totally unrelated job + massage at night or on the weekends.
- Yet another possibility is taking on stress from clients or maintaining an unruly client who continues to make a session miserable.
Step one – Evaluate:
- Ask yourself pointed questions and reflect. Write in a journal.
Step two – Identify:
- Look for trends and patterns within your personal reflections, questions and journal.
Step three – Find Ways to Correct and/or Remove the Stress:
- Locate a mentor (preferably within the profession).
- Find a group of therapists you can talk with. Bodywork Online is one of many useful sources.
- Get the proper amount of sleep.
- Watch your eating habits. Pay attention to good nutrition.
Step four – Follow Through:
- Even the best laid plans are useless if you don’t follow through. Take steps to ensure that you make a conscious effort to decrease the stressors one at a time. Baby steps. And, if you can kill two birds with one stone, by all means do so.
Encourage others by letting us know how you kicked a stressor in your practice with a reply below.
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