Ways to Stay Connected to Your Clients that Don’t Include Stretching Videos… (but keep doing that too!)

Ways to Stay Connected to Your Clients that Don’t Include Stretching Videos… (but keep doing that too!)

Ways to Stay Connected to Your Clients that Don’t Include Stretching Videos… (but keep doing that too!)

Don’t get me wrong, I love stretching! In fact, I did some partner stretching with my son a few days ago (I’ll post on my social media soon). There are other creative ways to be a beacon of self-care for your clients in their time of need. Below are four ways to stay connected by offering tangible resources for your beloved clients. (The links included are NOT affiliate links).

DIY Face Mask
If you are crafty, then you can make them yourself. There’s a link in the resource section at the end of the blog to get you started. If you are not the crafty type, you can purchase them from Etsy. There are MANY sellers making homemade masks. You can have the masks sent directly to your clients or to your home. As an added precaution, be sure to wash the mask(s) once they arrive.

Essential Oil(s)
Many essential oils are known to have anti-viral properties. They are excellent for cleaning the home and creating homemade hand sanitizer.

  • Tea Tree Oil
  • Lavender
  • Cinnamon
  • Garlic
  • Eucalyptus
  • Thyme
  • Clove
  • Oregano
  • Frankincense
  • Lemon

You can find essential oils in stores like Whole Foods…even Target will often have tea tree oil. You can also purchase online (link is below).

Travel-Sized Hand Sanitizer
Promotional companies make travel-sized hand sanitizer to give away at trade shows. You can also add your own logo if you choose. Just a heads up, the minimum order is 100-500 depending on the product…but don’t let that deter you! Connect with other LMTs and split the order. In the resource section below, I posted a company that has relatively low minimum order amount and a 10 day turn around.

Immune-Boosting Herbs
There is an array of herbs that are great for boosting the immune system. According to a study published by Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine, “… natural products serve as an excellent source of biodiversity for discovering novel antivirals, revealing new structure–activity relationships, and developing effective protective/therapeutic strategies against viral infections” (Lin et.al. 2014). Below are herbs that are readily available in the United States:

  • Turmeric
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Oregano
  • Licorice Root
  • Elderberry
  • Echinacea
  • Calendula
  • Astragalus Root
  • Cat’s Claw
  • Olive Leaf

Send your clients dried herbs, along with a recipe or two on how to use them. This is an excellent way to send your love! You can find these herbs in your local market or online.

It is important to stay connected with your clients by sending them small, affordable, yet meaningful care packages. It helps to keep the continuity of care and the relationship that you have built throughout the years. It is truly a worthwhile investment in their health.

Be well healers,

Vanessa Hazzard, M.Ed., LMT

LINKS TO HELP ON YOUR JOURNEY:
Face mask tutorial: https://hellosewing.com/face-mask-sewing-pattern/

Etsy search for face mask sellers: https://www.etsy.com/search?q=face%20mask

Bulk essential oils: https://www.bulkapothecary.com/categories/essential-oils/pure-therapeutic-grade/

Positive Promotions (hand sanitizer): https://www.positivepromotions.com/hand-sanitizer-bzk-towelette-kit-personalization-available/p/osw8985/

Lin, L. T., Hsu, W. C., & Lin, C. C. (2014). Antiviral natural products and herbal medicines. Journal of traditional and complementary medicine4(1), 24–35. https://doi.org/10.4103/2225-4110.124335

Starwest Botanicals (dried bulk herbs): https://www.starwest-botanicals.com/category/bulk-herbs/?utm_campaign=herbs&utm_medium=cpc&utm_source=adcenter&utm_content=bulk-herbs-exact&utm_term=bulk%2520herbs&msclkid=2742169cad66148a9f7b48e32f911c91

Golden Milk Recipe: https://wellnessmama.com/223/turmeric-tea/

Don't Forget Your Freebie!

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Meet Vanessa Hazzard, M.Ed., LMT

Since 2005, I have been helping folks to reduce chronic and acute pain, decrease stress, improve athletic performance, restore range of motion, and simply relax while hiding from the kids and in-laws. In short, I help you be resilient to whatever life throws at you!

Lets get to know each other! Join my Thai Yoga Massage community on Facebook. 

Check out my upcoming classes to learn with me in person!

4 Quick Tips for Successful Online Learning for LMTs

4 Quick Tips for Successful Online Learning for LMTs

4 Quick Tips for Successful Online Learning for LMTs

With self-quarantine mandates in effect, there are more licensed massage therapists and wellness professionals accessing online learning than at any point in our professional history.

Online learning can prove to be challenging for us…due to the tactile nature of our career. We are used to our learning experiences including touching and movement. With that taken out of the equation, learning and retaining knowledge can be a daunting task.  While it may be a challenge at first, it is still possible to have an awesome e-learning experience!

Here’s a few tips for you to make the most out of online learning:

 

1. Limit Your Distractions

Find a quiet place free of commotion and close the door. Close any and all unnecessary browsers. Also, put your phone on “Do Not Disturb”. This will turn off the ringer and social media notifications.

2. Take Handwritten Notes

Writing your notes by hand helps you to retain the information better than using a Word document. Taking notes is especially helpful when watching a video lesson or podcast.

3. Don’t Try to Digest the Lesson All at Once

This often leads to cramps and muscle aches (which is why most of our clients come to see us)! It also leads to daydreaming, loss of focus, and a decrease in your ability to retain the information. Instead, pause the lesson every 10 minutes to take notes. Take a 5 minute stretching break every hour.

4. Embodiment

Embodying the lesson allows you to take what is on the screen and make it tangible. For example: mimic the movements and make note of how a stretch feels. Pretend that there is a body in front of you. Practice the techniques like you would on a client. Lastly, palpate the areas on your body and on a partner if one is available.

I hope you found these quick tips helpful! Feel free to contact me with any specific questions!

Be well,

Vanessa

 

 
 
 
Remember…quiet your mind, have faith in your foundation, and trust the work.

Don't Forget Your Freebie!

Get my free book on relieving low back pain

Get It Now!

Meet Vanessa Hazzard, M.Ed., LMT

Since 2005, I have been helping folks to reduce chronic and acute pain, decrease stress, improve athletic performance, restore range of motion, and simply relax while hiding from the kids and in-laws. In short, I help you be resilient to whatever life throws at you!

Lets get to know each other! Join my Thai Yoga Massage community on Facebook. 

Check out my upcoming classes to learn with me in person!

Faith is the Opposite of Anxiety

Faith is the Opposite of Anxiety

I’d like to share something with you all that I never really talk about. I don’t like to get too personal because personal and professional boundaries are important. Yet, I’m choosing to share this part of my life with you all because I often hear other healing arts entrepreneurs struggle with this same thing.

I had a pretty challenging childhood. I grew up poor and that affected my relationship towards money and self-worth. Poverty messes with your brain in ways that can affect you over time and in many ways.  Ways that have taken years of therapy to work through! In the past, I have even had panic attacks when working on wealthy clients because the voice in my head that says, “I’m not worthy”, won’t shut the hell up!

Here I am, a healing arts professional with 14 years of experience under my belt. I have multiple degrees and countless certifications. I’ve worked on thousands of clients and had hundreds of students over the years, and yet shaking that feeling of not being good enough is still a struggle for me.

Thankfully, most days the negative voice is quiet or non-existent. This is the result of years of practice with re-educating my brain. Being a wellness professional doesn’t mean that I am immune to intrapersonal struggles, but it does mean that I have come up with ways to help myself when I am panicked. When I feel the anxiety coming on, I remind myself of these things:

Quiet Your Mind

  • The harmful things my mind is telling me is a result of my childhood and is not rooted in an assessment of my skills. Reminding myself of this brings me back into the present instead of replaying old mental tapes.

Faith in Your Foundation

  • Faith is the opposite of anxiety. If I am struggling with faith in myself, my faith in the foundation of the healing modalities I practice is forever unshaken! Having a strong foundation in eastern and western approaches to massage and bodywork makes me feel like I am supported by all of the healers who have lent their wisdom over the ages to perfect these traditions. Studying with experienced professionals has helped me to build confidence.

Trust the Work

  • When I quiet my mind and have faith in my foundation, it makes me feel like the work is bigger than myself…which it is! It helps me to trust the work and get out of my own way.

  Are you struggling with confidence in yourself as a healing arts professional? Wouldn’t it be great to build a stronger foundation in massage and bodywork, replete with a larger body of knowledge?

I can help you with that.

Along with an array of courses in the United States, I’m going back to Thailand for the third time June 22-30, 2019 and I’d love for you to join me! This time, I’ll be teaching at Samahita Retreat Center, located on the lovely island, Koh Samui.

Spend 9-days learning Thai massage, partner yoga, and how to incorporate eastern knowledge in western settings. The course I’ll be teaching is eligible for NCBTMB CE hours in most states, including New York. (Contact me for details and I can tell you if it is approved in your state). You will learn traditional Thai massage combined with innovative techniques that are evidence-based…and plenty of variations based on body types and injuries!

Not a massage therapist? Yoga and fitness professionals are welcome!

This is not only an opportunity to build your practice and earn continuing education hours, but it is also a chance to explore the other side of the world! Click here to learn more and register! Anyway, I’m so glad that I was able to share my experiences with you all in hopes of helping someone else that struggles with the same thing.

Remember…quiet your mind, have faith in your foundation, and trust the work.

Join Vanessa in Thailand!

Immerse yourself in the beauty of Thai culture. Breathe in the sights and sounds while relaxing on gorgeous beaches. Eat healthy meals while meeting new friends!

Learn More

Don't Forget Your Freebie!

Get my free book on relieving low back pain

Get It Now!

Meet Vanessa Hazzard, M.Ed., LMT

Since 2005, I have been helping folks to reduce chronic and acute pain, decrease stress, improve athletic performance, restore range of motion, and simply relax while hiding from the kids and in-laws. In short, I help you be resilient to whatever life throws at you!

Lets get to know each other! Join my Thai Yoga Massage community on Facebook. 

Check out my upcoming classes to learn with me in person!

Should Americans Study Thai Massage in Thailand?

Should Americans Study Thai Massage in Thailand?

Thailand is known as the “Land of Smiles” for a reason. The people are as warm as the weather. The food is affordable and delicious. There are many beautiful Buddhist temples! Even if you are not Buddhist, the architecture alone is awe-inspiring!

In my previous blog, I talked about my first visit to Chiang Mai, Thailand. While it was the best decision I’ve ever made, there are still many differences between studying massage in the United States and studying in Thailand. I’m often asked if I prefer one experience more than the other. There are pros and cons to both. Massage therapy isn’t standardized worldwide. Therefore, before making the decision to study abroad, there are many factors to consider.

There are wonderful teachers in Thailand and if you find them, learn from them! And yet, not all teachers are for everyone. My goal is not to bash anyone. My goal is to give insight into what you may encounter based on my first-hand experience:

Language Barrier

While many people in Thailand speak some conversational English, there still may be a language barrier that exists in the classroom setting. I have seen students encounter this specifically when referring to anatomical terms. Thai massage is largely energetic, so in the places I’ve learned, the sen lines and acupoints are referred to more often than the actual muscle group. When westerners with a background in anatomy and physiology have asked for clarification for the corresponding anatomical structure, there was some difficulty translating it to English.

Certificates

Many of the schools in Thailand offer certificates as a part of their training. The downside is the certificates that you get after completing the course are not accepted in the United States as part of the required hours to earn your massage therapy license. Some schools are now offering NCBTMB continuing education hours. This is great if your state accepts CE hours from the NCBTMB.

Some states, like Louisiana, require a completely separate application form from its providers. If you live in New York, the CE provider has to submit an additional form, along with the initial approved provider application. This is something that many American LMTs are not aware of, and they end up having to take additional CE courses back home because the classes they took abroad do not count!

Adaptability

When learning Thai massage during a weekend or weeklong course, you are taught a routine. While this is a great way to learn, oftentimes there are not many adjustments offered for people with different body types, levels of flexibility, and injuries. As a person with a flexible and heavier body type, this was a bit of a challenge at times. Some moves my teacher had the other students skip on me because he didn’t know how to adjust on a body like mine.

Also, there are still misconceptions about certain conditions, like pregnancy and cancer, that have been debunked in the west, but still remain prevalent in the east. For example, I have been told by teachers in Thailand that touching a pregnant person’s ankles and/or thumb webbing will cause an abortion. Yet, we now know that you can perform this without causing harm to the fetus.

 

While learning Thai massage abroad is not quite like learning in the United States, don’t let that be a deterrent! I’m going back to Thailand for the third time June 22-30, 2019 and I’d love for you to join me! This time, I’ll be teaching at Samahita Retreat Center, located on the lovely island, Koh Samui. Spend 9-days learning Thai massage, partner yoga, and how to incorporate eastern knowledge in western settings.

The course I’ll be teaching is eligible for NCBTMB CE hours in most states, including New York. (Contact me for details and I can tell you if it is approved in your state). You will learn traditional Thai massage combined with innovative techniques that are evidence-based…and plenty of variations based on body types and injuries!

Not a massage therapist? Yoga and fitness professionals are welcome!

This is not only an opportunity to build your practice and earn continuing education hours, but it is also a chance to explore the other side of the world!

If you are ready to say yes to adventure and transformation, click here to learn more and register for the experience of a lifetime!

I Was Frazzled, Scared, but I Did It Anyway: My First Trip to Thailand

I Was Frazzled, Scared, but I Did It Anyway: My First Trip to Thailand

Starting Over

Few people know the real reason I went to Thailand when I did. I have been wanting to travel there since I first learned Thai massage 12 years ago. Yet, between starting a family and figuring out my path as a wellness professional, the timing was never right. In March 2012, my then-husband and I decided to divorce. It was easily the most challenging period of my life. I was confused, depressed, yet weirdly empowered to move on and recreate a different path for myself. Up until that point, the career decisions I made revolved around being a wife and a mom.

Don’t get me wrong, I considered my own happiness as well, but I factored in how my choices would impact my husband and son. At the time, I was practicing massage therapy, yoga, and Reiki. I was happy, but the money was inconsistent, and I didn’t have the acumen to build the kind of business that could support us. I loved teaching massage therapy, but the school was an hour away…plus I had to work shifts that made it impossible to spend time with my family.

This was also before Obamacare so we were reliant on my ex-husband’s health insurance. Unfortunately, his job was physically and mentally taxing and didn’t offer much in terms of compensation. Because of all of that, I decided to change careers and began looking at nursing schools. It wasn’t my passion to be a nurse, but it was a stable and sensible career choice that would allow me to be the kind of wife and mother that my family deserved.

After we decided to separate, everything fell apart. I stopped applying to nursing schools, I quit my teaching position, and my son and I moved back in with my mom. I didn’t know what was next for me because, for the past five years, everything revolved around a family that was now broken up. I now was tasked with creating a new life and future for myself and my son.

I had some money saved up and I considered going to Thailand for a week or so, since I needed to do continuing education hours anyway. Plus, since I put off the trip when I decided to start a family, it seemed fitting that I go now thatI’m starting over. I talked to my mom about it, and she told me to go for 3weeks…considering the flights are about 20ish hours!

So, I went.

Bum Guns and Comfort Zones

Two months after separating from my ex, I was on a flight to the other side of the world. I’ve never flown internationally…and I haven’t ever flown by myself. After traveling through Seattle and South Korea, I found my way to Chiang Mai in northern Thailand. I told the guesthouse manager the time that my flight landed, but I didn’t factor in the line for immigration and currency exchange.

By the time I arrived at the guesthouse, it was closed! Luckily, there were a few guests still awake at 12:30 am that knew the manager and had her phone number. She lived nearby and arrived within 10 minutes to show me to my room. I listened to the Alabama Shakes while I unpacked and attempted to get some rest.

 

 

One of the spots I enjoyed most was a lake outside Chiang Mai.

The next few days were spent getting used to navigating Chiang Mai, finding places to eat, and learning to use a bum gun. In my preparation for the trip, I somehow missed how to use the potty! So, in Thailand, you cannot flush toilet paper. It has to go in the wastebasket. Their septic system can’t handle it. Instead, there is a hose hooked up to the toilet that you squirt your…uhh… parts. Then you use the toilet paper to dry yourself. It took some getting used to, but now I actually prefer that way!

Once I started Thai massage school, I felt more settled. I made friends from around the world-many of which I am still friends with nearly 7 years later. English was people’s second or even third language, and yet we connected as if there were no barriers at all. Some of the people I met were also going through tough transitions in life. We comforted and supported one another… all while learning fun Thai massage techniques! After only being there for a few weeks, Chiang Mai felt like home. It still does to this day.

 

 

Pasi (Finland), Julie (France), Rhonnie (New Zealand), and Stelios (Greece) hanging out at
Wa Lai House! 

That life-altering experience taught me that you can’t recreate yourself inside your comfort zone. I needed to go where no one knew me,so no one could compare me to my former self. Now, several years later, I decided to remain a massage therapist, yoga instructor, and wellness educator. I earned my Bachelor of Applied Science in Massage Therapy and am currently earning my Masters in Adult and Continuing Education.

I’ve written books and articles on massage therapy, as well as produced instructional videos. I have taught hundreds of massage therapists and yoga instructors Thai massage and western-based bodywork. I look forward to sharing the healing arts with hundreds more!

Travel is a Gift of Transformation

As you can tell by my story, international travel can be daunting and scary, but it doesn’t have to be. I’m going back to Thailand for the third time June 22-30, 2019 and I’d love for you to join me! This time, I’ll be teaching at Samahita Retreat Center, located on the lovely island, Koh Samui. Spend 9-days learning Thai massage, partner yoga, and how to incorporate eastern knowledge in western settings.

This is not only an opportunity to build your practice and earn continuing education hours, but it is also a chance to explore the other side of the world!

If you are ready to say yes to adventure and transformation, click here to learn more and register for the experience of a lifetime!

Please Share!

Join Vanessa in Thailand!

Immerse yourself in the beauty of Thai culture. Breathe in the sights and sounds while relaxing on gorgeous beaches. Eat healthy meals while meeting new friends!

Learn More

Don't Forget Your Freebie!

Get my free book on relieving low back pain

Get It Now!

Meet Vanessa Hazzard, M.Ed., LMT

Since 2005, I have been helping folks to reduce chronic and acute pain, decrease stress, improve athletic performance, restore range of motion, and simply relax while hiding from the kids and in-laws. In short, I help you be resilient to whatever life throws at you!

Lets get to know each other! Join my Thai Yoga Massage community on Facebook. 

Check out my upcoming classes to learn with me in person!

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