After a lot of sliding, rubbing, pressing, stroking, then pulling, she says to me, “I can tell you exercise and lift weights but I can sense there’s a DIFFERENT type of tension in your body.”
Can you really tell?, I thought, as my ears perked for a possibility of a conversation brewing with the therapist I’ve been going to the past 3 consecutive months.
Let’s back up. She wasn’t a physical therapist or counseling therapist but a massage therapist. Yes, spas are quite expensive, and we usually go only if we’re on vacation and splurge for a truly relaxing experience. However, I do keep a mental gauge of the cost for a standard deep tissue massage, which should be less than $1/min, where it being way over-priced if more. With multiple physical therapists in my family and living an active lifestyle, learning the benefits of massage has outweighed the steep cost for an hour of either bliss or pain, depending on your tolerance.
Last year, we got sucked into the monthly membership model of Massage Envy, which I honesty wouldn’t recommend. But this is how we saved: they were having a special on gift cards; spend $50 or more and get an equal-valued one for half off. So we bought enough gift cards along with the half off ones to purchase a 6-month membership paid in full. We were even savvy enough to calculate in another gift card to pay a tip for each included monthly massage. We never went more than the included one each month. But taking advantage of these gift card discounts in bulk was the way to go. Don’t forget to cancel 30 days BEFORE the end of your membership. We got stung on that one and were forced to pay an extra month, leaving a bad taste in our mouths.
But that last extra month was when my therapist, Jessica, finally added some value beyond a great massage. She proceeded to ask me if I was stressed out about work or life. Then she offered me a great piece of FREE advice:
When you’re becoming over-stressed in any situation, stop for a minute, and think of 3 things you are grateful for that day.
I realized they could be as simple as waking up next to the woman I love, be given the opportunity to work and support myself and family, and healthy enough to live a lifestyle that I enjoy. I tend to get bogged down with trivial things much of the time. It’s not worth it! This was a reminder to take that extra second or two to remind myself how lucky I am in what we do have by appreciating the wonderful things in our lives because not everyone has that luxury. Worst comes to worst, I can relax and be grateful the world is knot going to explode even if I have to shoulder the load.