A Key to Caring for Yourself

By Wendy Brunson

Can we agree on one thing? No matter who we are, what we do, or how enlightened we think ourselves to be, we all have days that rattle us, or maybe even shake us to our core. If you’re like me, perhaps you wake each morning with intentions to feel grateful, peaceful and calm. We hope these intentions will guide us throughout our day as we strive to gently and compassionately connect with all whom cross our paths, until…the morning traffic clogs our path, someone’s horn blares and their middle finger meets our gaze, hot and beloved coffee ends up on our clean, pressed lap…illness, work troubles, money fears, miscommunications, arguments…you know the list. These common daily stressors build up in our nervous systems and work their way into our physical bodies. They show up as headaches, kinked necks, stiff lower backs, aggravating hip and knee discomfort, or possibly debilitating plantar fasciitis. If neglected, these stressors can turn into incessant anxiety, depression, auto-immune disorders, chronic pain, and that list continues on also.

As the stimulation of everyday life grows more overwhelming by the day, people are becoming increasingly curious about, and open to, alternative forms of healing. The list of holistic practices as preventative medicine, or what is now known as complementary medicine, is growing. We are learning the importance of caring for our body, mind, and spirit as a whole. Massage therapy is a very common, popular, diverse and exquisite tool to add to your holistic self care arsenal. Here is a short list of why massage therapy can be a helpful part of your health-care regimen.  

Increases Mind/Body Awareness: When you allow yourself time on the massage table, it enables you to slow down and tune into your body. You become more conscious of the layers of muscles, fascia, joints and tendons that work harmoniously and/or dysfunctionally together. As you enter into the present moment, you begin to understand how the scattered mind, and all of it’s memories and worries play a part in your body’s current reality.

Improves Flexibility: Regular massage loosens and relaxes muscles. This helps your body achieve its full range of motion and increases movement potential.

Improves Circulation: Whether you’re receiving a gentle, relaxing massage, or intense deep tissue bodywork, loosening tight muscles and tendons allow increased blood flow that can help with pain management and eliminating toxins.

Pain Management: Regular massage therapy can help alleviate problems like lower back pain and chronic headaches. A professional massage therapist can locate the root of the problem and create a helpful regime.

Helps Eliminate Toxins: Massage therapy activates your lymphatic system which helps remove and eliminate toxins that build up in our bodies. This is why it’s very important to drink water after you receive a massage.

Helps Ease Anxiety And Depression: In a Recent study in the International Journal Of Neuroscience, researchers found a 31% increase in the level of both serotonin and dopamine after massage therapy, which increases the feelings of happiness, and decrease feelings of anxiety and depression.

It feels GREAT! Being touched feels amazing and allows us to connect with our physicality, mental state and emotions.

As I began working as a massage and Reiki therapist in 2004, I noticed how the aches, pains and emotional were affecting me. I realized how important it was to take care of myself as a way of continuing the work that I love. I now enjoy a variety of holistic therapies that include Reiki, meridian massage with energy work, facilitated stretching, myofascial release, acupuncture, yoga, and meditation, to name a few.

When someone books a massage appointment with me, my personal style is very intuitive and includes a tranquil blend of Reiki energy healing, Lomi Lomi, myofascial release, deep tissue, soft tissue release, and foot reflexology, according to each person’s needs. I offer pure essential oils for relaxing and detoxifying, and use an extensive variety of crystals and gemstones to assist in balancing energy during my sessions.

There is a wide range of massage modalities and styles to choose from. Finding one that serves your current situation may take a little research, or it may be as simple as asking a few friends if they have anyone they work with or recommend. Deep tissue massage may be exactly what some people need, but may feel too aggressive for others. Facilitated stretching, myofascial release or Thai massage may be the answer for people looking to increase their body’s range of motion while becoming more flexible. Most practitioners you meet with will have their own style of working with people that includes a combination of the many classes and techniques they’ve learned over the years, this may help guide you .

Life will always serve us a healthy dose of just what we need to grow as we participate in this human experience. Sometimes, it’s crucially important to create an occasion for ourselves to slow down, enter the present moment, and reconnect with our minds and bodies. At the Living Free Healing Center, each of us are trained healers and practitioners. We offer a wide range of holistic services including various types of massage, Reiki, and sound healing. We offer yoga classes, drop-in meditation, and Reiki classes. Check us out online at LivingFreeHealing.com.

Wendy Brunson is a certified massage practitioner and Reiki energy healer with 15 years of experience. Call today to book your self care session. (530) 591-9063