4 Morning Habits To Help Put A Little Pep In Your Step

Forget hitting the alarm multiple times. Try this instead!

1) No more “beep…beep…beeeeep” for you! Switching out your typical alarm beeping for some music is the route to go. Let’s think this through, you know you have to wake up the next morning and you know that dreaded alarm is going to sound. When it does go off, you automatically are put in a bad mood and not ready to face the world.

By switching it to music that not only mentally persuades you to get up, but also waking up by music puts you in a better mood. A better mood equals happier thoughts and happier thoughts equal creativity and happiness. Sounds like music to my ears!

2) You don’t even have to leave the bed for this one if you do not want to! One of the best and easiest way to start your morning is with Child Pose. All you’ll have to do is throw the covers over (or get on top of them) and stretch.

It’s an easy stretch, that can be modified, that gentle stretches out the muscles in your back. It’s also a great transition from sleeping to waking up. Talk about Rise and Shine!

3) Wait, but first… not coffee! I know, I get it. I’m a coffee LOVER. I drink it daily, sometimes a couple of times a day. Fun fact though is that I never finish a complete cup. Weird, right? Back to the habits- drink water instead.

I think it’s safe to say that some of us know to do this, but almost all of us never apply it to our morning routine. Not only is it refreshing, but it is amazing with flushing out toxins. It also helps with the morning blues aka fatigue. Goooooood Morning 6:30 am!

4) Hot or cold? That is the question! I’m a fan of washing my face with a warm cloth in the morning. It’s like a mini facial-ahhh! But cold water is the way to go! Washing your face in the morning with a cold cloth not only helps you wake up, but it also does wonders for your skin.

It helps reduce puffiness, helps to close your pores, but also reduces wrinkles. Let’s be honest, if it helps reduce any wrinkles I have then you don’t have to tell me twice! So basically you get QUADRUPLE the benefits of washing your face with a cold cloth: helps wake you up, reduce puffiness, helps close your pores, AND reduces wrinkles. Yes, please!

Not Feeling Confident About Your First Massage? I Have Advice For You That Will Help

The Do’s and Don’ts for Receiving Your First Massage and What to Expect Told by a Massage Therapist.

I DID NOT enjoy my first session.

I was 28 when I received my first massage and I was completely unsure what to expect during my session. I decided to go back to school to become a massage therapist and by doing so I had to receive a massage as a requirement. It was not for me! In some areas, she massaged too hard and in other areas, I could barely feel her massaging me at all.

Not to mention that I had a terrible headache right after.

But I didn’t know what I could have done differently: should I have told her that she was hurting me here but that I couldn’t feel her massaging me there, that this was my first time getting a massage, that I did not like my feet being rubbed in any form or fashion, or that I was cold the whole time? It was not what I thought it would have been.

Luckily for you, I am here to spare you all of the heartache of you second guessing your massage decision!

  • The first thing you have to DO is ask yourself what type of massage are you wanting to receive? Are you wanting to have a relaxing session, are you wanting to focus solely on a specific area of your body (shoulders, neck, knees) that you are having problems/pain with, or maybe a little bit of both? When you decide what type of session you are wanting then it will be easier for the therapist to mold the session to fit your massage needs.
  • If you are receiving a massage for the first time DO tell the therapist. A really good therapist will take the time to explain what you should expect and to help settle any nervousness you may have. We want to make sure that you are comfortable, secure, and that you have a good first session.
person holding babys foot
  • DO tell the therapist if you do not like your feet, face, or scalp touched. Trust me, if you do not it WILL BE MASSAGED. And it is ok if you do not like those areas to be touched. I personally hate my feet to be touched. I understand the benefits of massaging them, but it ain’t happening! So yes, please let your therapist know.
  • It is completely ok if you DO fall asleep while you are receiving a massage. Honestly, I consider it a compliment because you trusted me enough to allow yourself to be that relax to fall asleep. PS: if you snore, you snore. It truly does not faze a therapist at all!
  • You DO NOT have to be completely undressed to receive a massage. The choice is yours. I will tell you this though that if you do decide to leave your shirt or pants on, for example, those areas more than likely will not be massaged. A typical rule of thumb is that if it is covered, it will not be massaged. So if you are wanting your back massaged I recommend undressing for that. If you are still unsure, just ask your therapist.
  • You DO NOT have to shave your legs for a massage. You will be surprised how many women apologize for that. I get it, trust me. My legs are shaved depending on life at that point. For us therapists, it is not a make it or break it kind of deal.
modern businesswoman in casual outfit talking on mobile in office
  • DO NOT not show up for your appointment. If you know you are not going to make it or be late, let the therapist know. We know that life happens. A lot of time they can fit you in later that day or that same week. Appointments are how us therapist makes our bread and butter. Communication is always key.
  • You DO NOT have to tip. Yes, you read that right. Actually, it is not required for you too, but it is expected. Depending on where your therapist works can depend on how much you tip. I tell my clients whatever they think that the session was worth, tip accordingly. It’s your session!
  • I would consider this as a “DO and DON’T” point and to be the most important one. Just bear with me. Please be respectful of your massage therapist. We all know that massage in general does not have a good reputation historically. Unfortunately during both World Wars, most massage therapists had to resort to prostitution as a form of survival during those times.

We no longer live in those times. Massage therapy has regained its rightful reputation/place in the healthcare field as another form of pain management and alternative medicine. We do not consider the term “happy endings” as a joke. It is an insult.

With that being said… if a massage therapist ever makes or insinuate any inappropriate/ sexual gestures or remarks, there are steps you can take. First, let the therapist know that you are uncomfortable. A therapist may not be aware that a certain comment or gesture – like not securing the sheet tighter- made you uncomfortable.

We are still humans and make mistakes not realizing it because as therapists we get stuck/comfortable with the flow of our routine. If that does not work, let their manager know. You are protected as clients. Worst-case scenario, if appropriate actions have not been done by the manager or supervisor, contact the Massage Board of that state.

I know that last point was intense, but I believe it needed to be pointed out. You would be surprised by what clients say when they are either extremely nervous or just completely unaware. It happens to the best of us and when you don’t know, you don’t know. What it all boils down to is your massage therapist making sure that you have a great and safe first massage session.

two people shaking hands

So please take these insights from a massage therapist, share this post, and book yourself a massage session! Any questions or comments you have, let me know. I would be more than glad to answer them. You deserve to be treated well and to enjoy your massage session to the fullest!


	

Hot Towel or Not to Hot Towel? When in Doubt, Do!

Is using a hot towel necessary during a massage session or does it just feel good?

When that ‘awww’ sensation takes over…

That’s a hot towel to the body! It’s equivalent to you holding that hot cup of coffee between the palms of your hands when you’re chilly and you begin to warm up. ☕

I caught myself using a hot towel for almost all my sessions with my clients. Rather it was in the beginning, mid, or towards the end of the session, I was using one. But I wondered if using a hot towel really necessary? Or do therapists use a hot towel just to use one?

The answer is yes and yes.

What are they?

Prep work makes the dream work!

Using a hot towel is extremely beneficial to a client during a session. It helps ‘prep’ the area that the therapist will be working on. Let’s say you have back pain and wanted your therapist to work it out; a hot towel will warm up the soft tissues and muscles for you. It’s easier to treat any area warm than cold.

It’s kind of like mixing chocolate syrup in hot milk rather in cold milk: You spend less time stirring and it mixes better together. That means any soreness you may have had will not be as significant due to warming your back first by using a hot towel.

Relax the mind, you can relax the body!

A hot towel relaxes the mind. There is not one session out of the hundreds I have done that a client didn’t let out the biggest sigh of relief AFTER I placed a hot towel on them. In that sense, we as massage therapists just have to wait and let the body do its thing, sorta say. In a way, it does our job for us. If the mind ( the control center of the body) can relax then the body will follow, literally! It is truly amazing how much the body can respond when the mind is ‘shut off’ and how massage affects each of the systems of the body.

It just feels amazing!

Plain and simple: a hot towel feels AMAZING! You get a sense of relief that just washes over your body and in a way it feels like a security blanket. It just makes your massage session even that better of an experience. There is no wrong or right time to use a hot towel during a massage session, but if you rather not even bother just let your therapist know. No problem!

Rather if you like a hot towel or not during a session is all up to you. Let me know what you think! Are you a hot towel kind of a gal or guy?