Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Minding the Business: Taking care of you!

I've talked before about learning to say no as a fundamental business lesson. Especially for those of us who have a tendency to always put others first.  There are good reasons to put others first such as, you have children, aging parents and/or that's who you are.  But always doing for others and never carving out a little time for yourself leaves you depleted and worse yet, sore. If your unwinding time involves making jewelry or crocheting, the small muscle movements can leave you wound up tighter than an old fashioned grandfather's clock!

I work as a sign language interpreter, beadmaker, crocheter, knitter, jewelry designer and all around crafts maker. I know what I'm talking about. Over-use. Repetitive movement. Carpal Tunnel. My down time just wound me up more. I kept over using my muscles, giving myself migraines and soreness, but I didn't make anytime for me. No vacation, no days off, just work and over-use.

Maybe that's you, maybe it's not. But either way, I'll bet you need to make a little time for yourself. But what should you do? 

Get a massage.

Yes, dear readers, a massage. I'm encouraging everyone and anyone to get a massage.

I was the original queen of denial. I didn't realize how tight my muscles were and what they were doing to me. It drove me to doctors and neurologists. When the neurologist sent me to a chiropractor who said he could give me 50% of my movement back and massage therapy should be part of my regular routine, I was in so much pain I just did what the doctor ordered to feel better.

It took awhile to finally get to the point where I was ready for massage. Once I started going in the spring, I wondered why I hadn't gone earlier. Whatever stood in my way, I'm glad it didn't continue because massage is one of the best things I've ever done for my health.

I take 2 hours every three weeks to have a massage. My work and my hobbies wind up my muscles. Massage unwinds them. I feel better, have less pain and more movement than I've had in years. Two hours every three weeks, that's hardly a blip in my schedule.

It would hardly be a blip on your schedule too.

Take care of yourself, my friend. After all you do for others, you're entitled to enjoying your handmade work and feeling good.


laurelmoon said...

"No" can be spectacularly difficult, you are totally right. I've been working on that myself. I'm beginning to understand that sometimes when I say "yes" I cause myself problems in the long run. :)

Strings Attached Beads and Accessories said...

I did not know all the healing benefits of massage until my husband became one at the age of 56. If you haven't already you should Google the health benefits. Charlie has a few listed on his blog

Michelle said...

It's true, regular massage is very healthy. When I was an exec in the corporate world I got an hour massage every week. Made a huge difference in my stamina and health.
I quit work to take care of my Mom and had to cut back expenses.In the meantime my fav massage therapist moved away. Boy do I miss her!

Sarah Sequins said...


I agree 110 percent about the massages. I had a severe shoulder injury awhile back, and massage was just as important as physical therapy -- maybe more so -- in helping me become functional again!

I actually wrote a blog post on being an injured artist and listed all the ways I take care of myself -- massage was on the list. I also wrote an article for the Daily Muse on coping with injury., in case you're interested. My goal is to help as many people as I can.

Thanks for spreading the word about self-care, and also about massage! Both are, I feel, too overlooked.

-- Sarah