When you are a massage therapist, your work is to help people take care of themselves. Massage therapists encourage people to take care of themselves, too. The question is HOW?
When taking care of one's self, here is a few key points:
1. Get adequate sleep - most people need between 6-9 hours of sleep per nite. People try to function on 3-4 hours of sleep, but this inhibits tissue repair and depletes the immune system among other things.
2. Stay active - take a walk instead of a drive to the mail box, or park further away from stores an walk a few dozen extra steps. Build in activites that get you out in the sun for 15-30 minutes minimum per day. Both vitamin D and exercise help to improve your mood.
3. Take your vitamins/nutrients- whether in food, bodily soaking, liquid or powder/pill form, when you are stressed your electrolytes and other essencial nutrients get used. For example, go rock climbing in a gym for an hour or two with no breakfast....you will be ravenous by the time you are done because of all the calories/nutrients you consume in that one short hour or so.
4. Eat appropriately for your daily activities -massaging is a high calorie drain nearly the same as rock climbing or other exercise. For everyone, and especially therapists, eat a good breakfast high in un-greasy protein to diminish your sugar cravings, set aside time to eat a good lunch and you will be prepared for a light dinner (so you don't feel like gorging right before bed).
5. Take time to smell the roses - when you are stressed, the body is acting like it is running from a tiger (or some animal that is trying to eat you). Your body is in fight or flight mode....
This is the equivalent to running a marathon all day every day - your body will begin to give out after a while of running full out all the time.
When stuck in fight or flight, the mind is reviewing the situation and looking for escape as if you were faced with a tiger chasing/cornering you. This is the 'racing mind' when you try to sleep. Its a fabulous function if you were to actually be faced with a tiger, because you wouldn't want to be caught napping by the hungry tiger (you probably wouldn't wake up too happy when the tiger takes a leg). But when its a test, a bill, or a paper due, its an imaginary tiger and won't actually kill you, but your body still reacts the same...
Do what you can to resolve the situation, set a timeline or accomplish what can be done today and make a ToDo list for what is waiting on tomorrow. Once everything that can be done is...
Smelling flowers and enjoying scenery, relaxed conversation, massage, down-time will help reduce that stress or take you out of fight or flight.
So schedule your massage and Take Care of yourself.
All of our staff and practitoners at Family First Chiropractic and wellness are here to help you through your journey, please call us a 403-347-3261 to book an appointment today.