My Response to Some ’31 Thoughts During a Massage’

I recently read a hilarious blog post called “31 thoughts during a massage that everyone has, because it’s truly a bizarre experience“, by Kara Weymouth Although, they are 31 thoughts in this article, I will only answer a few of these, because I’ve already covered most of this in previous blog posts. Now again, these responses only apply to me and my business. Other therapists and businesses may think and do differently.

  1. Do other people neatly folded and stacked their clothing here? Whether you fold your clothes or just drape them across the chair, it makes no difference. So as long as my feet are not tangled in your clothes, it should not be a problem.
  1. This really hurts, but that means it’s working. Not in every case. Definitely let your
    If you're making faces, the pressure during the massage is probably too deep.

    If you’re making faces, the pressure is probably too deep.

    therapist know if the pressure is ever too much or too little. They can always adjust to your best pressure so that you don’t feel as if you have been run over by a steam roller, if you don’t want that. Bruises don’t look cute on anyone.

  1. Wow, she’s really digging in there. Please don’t bruise, skin. Again, please tell your therapist if the pressure is ever too much or too little. You don’t want to be bruised; the therapist doesn’t want to bruise you.
  1. I hope the massage oil she’s using doesn’t make my back break out because I really want to wear that new silk cami this weekend. If you prefer, you can bring your own massage media. If you have a preference of lotion over oil, you can ask that prior to your session.
  1. Does she get grossed out by people with bacne? Oh no, she just kneaded around a pimple on my back. This is a good thing. You don’t want the bacteria from the pimple to be spread across your back. That is something an aesthetician should take care of.
  1. This calming music really makes me anxious. Where’s the soothing Taylor Swift? If you prefer your own music, you should be able to bring it, and ask if you can use it, especially if you’re in a spa. Not everyone is able to relax to Megadeth or the soothing sounds of Black Sabbath.
  1. Can she really feel a pressure point on my shoulder and relieve it by pressing one on my hips? That doesn’t seem possible. More than likely, you have some referred pain going on. It is possible to touch one area, and relieve another. Ask your therapist; they should be happy to answer that question for you.
  1. OMG, does she think it’s strange that I left my underwear on? I would think it strange if you had scuba gear on, but not really your underwear.
  1. God, please don’t let me fart right now. You and me both, sister; you and me both. During this whole session, I’m sure were asking God the same thing for both our sanity sake. If it happens, it’s a natural reaction of muscles relaxing. Relax.
  2. Did she just use her elbows? It hurts so good. Ask. They’ll be more than happy to answer that question for you.
  1. Do massage therapists get massages after work? Yes, but not always.

This is NOT what Sheryl Sandberg meant by “Leaning In”

With so many young people using cell phones, texting has exploded with expanded data features, and addictive interaction on social media. With prolonged use of cellphones, tablets and laptops, many chiropractors and massage therapists are treating ‘Text Neck’, or leaning into the screen.

Before this happens to you, these are tips that you can do to help deal with it –

  1. Dial the font size up on your screen. Whether you use your tablet, laptop or cellphone most often, sometimes the font size will cause you to squint or lean in to the screen. This isn’t what Sheryl Sandberg meant by the term. On your computer, Hold down CTRL + the dial on your mouse, and dial to your preferred size of font. On the tablet/smartphone (Apple), go to General > Accessibility > Larger Text > Drag Slider Right. Check your Android phone or tablet in the settings area, for similar prompts.
  2. Take time to look away and focus. Leaning into the screen also affects your eyesight, akin to moving to movie projector closer to the screen. It also puts a ton of pressure on your neck, as it’s holding up your head in a position that it was not really designed for it to be. For every inch you lean into the screen it adds 10 pounds of weight to your head and neck. Take a few minutes to look away from your screen, and focus on a faraway object.
  3. Look up. When you lean in to your screen for a prolonged time, it is about the
    Take a few moments to lean away from the screen.

    Take a few moments to look away from the screen.

    same as repeating the same action over and over. This contributes to headaches and stiff necks. Allow your head to loll back, and lower your shoulders. Don’t worry; your head won’t fall off, even though it just may feel like it. Close your eyes, and take a few deep breaths. Definitely do this several times a day – It gives your neck and eyes a break.

  4. Use the dictation feature. One of the great things you probably never use on your phone is the dictation feature. As often as I am live tweeting (#Gladiator4Life), I have learned that dictation helps to keep up with the program, and keeps you from looking down SO often. I use the mic, and clip it in my ear. Just make sure that you proofread what it is writing, on your behalf. (Dang autocorrect!) Once the software gets used to your style, it tends to make corrections on its own.
  5. PUT THE PHONE DOWN – I get it – when I was in junior high (mumblemumble) years ago, I had classes with my best friend on EARTH all day for a year. I LOVED it; School was a daily hangout all day long. Then, we’d get home, and then get on the phone for hours. We even watched Jeopardy over the phone. This was back in the day when even the house line had a minutes plan. I truly understand what it means to just want to share every single thought with your friends all the time. But at some point, you just have to put the phone down. It’s hard to disengage at first, but actually talking in person does have its’ perks.
  6. Get a massage – Of course getting the muscles to relax increases flexibility, range of motion
    Prolonged texting with your neck craned forward without taking a break can cause a myriad of problems.

    Prolonged texting with your neck craned forward without taking a break can cause a myriad of problems.

    in your neck and relieves headaches. Prolonged texting with your neck craned forward without taking a break can cause pinched nerves, arthritis, and over time, disc degeneration. You are far too young to have to deal with that. Get a massage, or maybe an adjustment, if the problem cannot be solved with just the massage. These treatments are a great compliment to each other.

Note – This blog post is dedicated to Michele McDonald, who gave me the inspiration to write this post. If you have any questions about massage, please feel free to ask away!

10 Things – (Part 2 of 2) From the Massage Therapists’ Point of View

I came across a hilarious blog named HaHasforHooHas.com, and a post written by Susannah named “Ten Things You’ll Probably Think While Getting a Professional Massage”. I loved it so much, I wanted to post my reply to her (and many of your) concerns. Here’s my response. Now mind you, this is my view on the subject, not on behalf of any other therapist. The first half of this post is here, if you missed it.

6.  What if someone secretly slips into the room, murders the massage therapist and then proceeds with my massage, all the while I have no clue because my face is buried in this terrycloth donut hole? Your mind had a tendency to roam when you want it to be quiet, even to the extreme, sometimes. The trick is to nip these thoughts in the bud as soon as you can, so that you are able to enjoy your session. There is a very low likelihood of a murder happening during the session, so just take a nice deep breath, hold it a sec, and exhale.

7.  I wonder if my body feels weird. This is the last thing you need to worry about, yet everyone worries about this very thing. Everyone’s body – even twins – is unique to itself. Each body feels weird, yet none of them are. Loving the skin you’re in is the trick.

8.  I bet my feet stink. Unless I’m passed out on the floor, with my nostril flaps bolted shut, your feet are fine. If you have malodorous feet, there are things that can be sprayed on them, such as wintergreen or lavender, that smell wonderful, and clean your feet at the same time. If you are truly concerned about The State of the Feet, here is a recipe to treat them, from Aura Cacia, or your could buy my Diva’s Bathtime Tea, on Etsy. Just do me a favor; please don’t walk through any garbage dumps barefoot. That will help both of us.

9.  Would it be weird if I moaned? No, so as long as it doesn’t go any farther than that. I used to have a regular client getting chair massage at when I worked at Logan Airport, who sounded like he was straight out of an Herbal Essences commercial. This was at a booth that had a modest privacy screen, meaning that you saw my head, when I stood up to work. You should have seen the faces of the people that walked by that heard the client, and saw just my head, until they walked around the wall, to see what I was doing. He didn’t care; he was getting his back taken care of, so that he would be able to enjoy his flight. Sometimes, clients will cry or laugh uncontrollably during a session. Emotional releases tend to be spontaneous and not always controllable.

10.   Will I ever shut off my mind and relax? You are not the only one with this challenge. Mindfulness is something that we are all challenged with. Your mind shoots off in so many directions, never wanting to be quiet. It’s called ‘monkey mind’ in many circles. Again, catching runaway thoughts and nipping them in the bud helps. Refocusing on quiet, calming thoughts takes practice and diligence, and always is a work in process.

I’m sure that you have more things on your mind than just these 10. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask. I’ll do my best to to answer them!