Never let your professional massage therapy or bodywork practice grow stagnant. Instead, stay curious and take steps to prevent your practice from landing in a rut. After all, it is when work becomes stagnant that so many practitioners run the risk of growing bored and burning out.
Besides avoiding such a fate, making sure a practice continues to change and grow in a positive direction can also be a great way to ensure success.
Fortunately, professional massage therapists and bodyworkers have a somewhat built-in mechanism for preventing stagnation and boredom. This mechanism is called continuing education, and it is widely available to professional manual therapists. The presence and availability of an incredibly wide array of continuing education classes means you can find a variety of methods for improving your own skills and your overall practice.
Often, this kind of practice boosting begins with the simple act of getting curious, and making it a habit to nurture your curiosity. Try to notice next time some observation or bit of information about massage therapy or bodywork piques your interest and makes you want to know more. These observations may happen in the session room or on the business side of your practice, but either way, they may merit a look into continuing education classes that could provide the knowledge you need.
For example, in the session room, one of your clients may present with an issue, such as chronic neck and shoulder pain, and you may attempt to resolve the pain in a series of sessions, with no lasting results. Frustrated, you might begin searching around in various books and online resources for a different technique or modality reported to alleviate chronic neck and shoulder pain.
In this process, you may well come across one or more upcoming continuing education classes that specifically address chronic neck and shoulder pain. By enrolling in one of these continuing education classes, you are taking steps to satisfy your curiosity about how to help this client, while simultaneously building on your own skill set, which can benefit your practice as a whole.
You may also begin to notice yourself wanting and needing to know more about some of the business aspects of a massage therapy or bodywork practice. This could occur as you are considering how to go about marketing your services in order to draw a larger client base and increase your income. Here, continuing education can come in handy once again, as there are continuing education classes that teach manual therapists valuable marketing techniques.
These are only two examples, but there are myriad ways in which continuing education can serve as the mechanism for refining and improving your professional practice. If you find yourself beginning to grow bored or frustrated in your working life as a massage therapist or bodyworker, take that as a sign to immediately become more aware and observant.
By doing so, you should begin to notice the weak spots or areas in need of a bit of bolstering throughout your practice. Then, you can take this insight and use it to select the most appropriate continuing education classes for you and your practice.