All too often, whether it’s while we’re driving down the road or performing a tried-and-true massage technique, we may zone out and become caught up in a stream of thoughts that float through our minds, which usually have nothing to do with the present situation at hand.

By recommitting, over and over again, to stay focused and pay attention to what is happening right here and right now, it is possible to live a more vibrant and satisfying life. However, this is not the only benefit of increased awareness—staying focus and paying attention can help you perceive important information about the task at hand, which may go unnoticed when you’re in a less conscious state.

For example, ask yourself when the last time was that you truly paid full attention to the way you use massage cream in your massage therapy or bodywork practice. Ask yourself when the last time was you noticed the package your massage cream comes in or noticed the way it feels on your hand when you pump some from the bottle.

Next time you are in a session, challenge yourself to be absolutely mindful about your massage cream, paying full attention to all of the above details and them some. Use your senses and focus on the smell or lack of smell associated with your massage cream, whether it seems thin or thick, whether you enjoy the texture on your hands.

Also pay close attention to how much of the massage cream you are using on each client, and see if you can spot a pattern in terms of when you might use a large amount versus a small amount of massage cream. See how your use of massage cream changes when you are working on different clients with different issues and skin types, or when you are performing different techniques or modalities.

As you may imagine, turning up your level of awareness around the use of massage cream in such a manner can yield a huge amount of useful information for you and your massage therapy or bodywork practice. This exercise in mindfulness may end up conveying that you have the perfect massage cream for your current practice, or you might find out something to the contrary.

For example, you may realize that the massage cream you are using requires a large amount of product for nearly every client and technique, and that you might be able to find a massage cream that is created with more glide, so you do not have to apply nearly as much. A realization such as this one can be a big boon to your bottom line over the course of time.

As another example, you may notice you enjoy the slight aroma of lavender that accompanies your massage cream, but that you might like a little variety when it comes to the essential oils that are blended into your massage cream. This could mean branching out and purchasing another massage cream with a different scent, such as citrus or rosemary.