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  • Karen Stoner, LMT

4 ways to make scheduling your next massage easier

4 ways to make scheduling your next massage easier

1. Schedule your next one before you leave

Short Answer: We all leave an appointment with the best intentions of, “I’m going to remember to do this”, but by the time we get home or even to the car, we’ve checked email, answered a voicemail, or gotten annoyed by traffic, so it slips our minds. Don’t let the opportunity fall prey to distraction, and schedule before you leave so it’s one less thing to worry about or remember to do.

More details: In our society today, we are constantly having to make decisions, getting hit with distractions, having people contact us, and needing us to deal with things. It is very easy to want to get out of an appointment to start dealing with everything, then schedule your next appointment when you get home and look at your schedule and can take a breath, but that's usually the way that we forget to go back to smething that isn't ppressing. If you schedule your next appointment before leaving, you not only remove the chance that you'll get distracted and forget, you are taking steps to making your self-care part of a healthy routine (see #3 below) and you are also ensuringt hat you get a first pick of your therapist's available open appointments. If you wait too long before scheduling, you could end up being in pain rather than avoiding being in pain, and you may not be able to get an appointment as quickly as you need.

4 ways to make scheduling your next massage easier

2. Ask for a gift certificate (and babysitter if needed)

Short answer: Birthdays, holidays, special occasions... there is usually a time when someone asks you “What do you want/need?” Be confident and ask not only for a gift of an opportunity for a massage, but also don’t be afraid to ask for help to get you free to go to the massage appointment.

More details: Sometimes the hardest thing about taking time for yourself is simply getting away, or even justifying to yourself or those around you that you need the time. Sometimes having something tangible like a gift certificate is an easy way to say "Yes, I am doing this because I have to use this certificate and I don't want it to go to waste." One thing we also often have difficulty doing is admitting when we need help. We tend to not want to admit that we need someone to do something for us, but if you are a caretaker or anyone who is responsible for others, you are not being negligent or avoiding your "duties" if you ask for someone else to take over for a very short time. Caretakers especially need to take care of themselves, and asking for help is not a sign of weakness, just proof that you are taking care of yourself so you can continue being your best in taking care of others.

4 ways to make scheduling your next massage easier

3. Make it a routine

Short answer: Regular routines become habits. They take a little discipline to get started, but can be good for you. Try to set something solid like ‘every third Wednesday’ or “the first Tuesday of the month’ and stick with it.

More details: Routines create habits - both good and bad. Sometimes the bad ones are easier to create because they usually involve something more indulgent or involve avoiding something we don't want to do. Good ones are harder, but ultimately make your life easier and better. Think about brushing your teeth vs eating a snack before bed. It is super easy to settle down with a big bowl of pretzels or ice cream when winding down before going to bed, while how often did your parents have to nag you into brushing your teeth efore you made yourself make it a routine? And at the same time, which one is actually better for you? Getting a massage into a good routine should require a little less nagging than learning to brush your teeth, bu can be just as good of a hait. To make it a routine, son't leave it vague at first, set some guidelines to keep it a regular habit and it will get easier to make it a normal occurrance.

4 ways to make scheduling your next massage easier

4. Go for a shorter, more focused appointment

Short answer: If you are putting off scheduling a massage because you have to figure out when you can fit a whole hour+ into your schedule, don’t. If time is an issue, opt for a shorter appointment that focuses just on your most needed issue, then get a longer appointment when you have the time.

More details: Longer doesn't always mean better, especially if time is limited and that limited time is keeping your from scheduling. You don't have to go all-or-nothing every single massage. Sometimes getting into a good routine means switching things up to what works. Even though a 60 or 90 minute massage is fabulous and beneficial, it can be hard to find the time, so it can be easy to put off scheduling until the time appears in the schedule, but as we've seen in #1 above, distractions happen and "when it happens" might be way longer than you want it to be. If a longer appointment is difficult, go for a half hour or a chair massage to focus just on your most troublesome areas to keep them from getting worse, and then take the time for a longer appointment if and when the time is available. This keeps the massage in your routine without stressing your already limited time and stopping you from any minimum amount of care for yourself.

4 ways to make scheduling your next massage easier

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