This is a guest post by Amy Hagerup of http://amyhagerup.com.
I wonder if, as a nurse, you have always believed that getting a massage is a luxury to be reserved for the rich or perhaps the seriously ill.
As a professional nurse, you are probably very aware of how you spend your money and no doubt have budgeted items to build up your own health.
I have a beautiful niece who is a nurse par excellence!
When she graduated, she got a job in a private practice but was frustrated with the limited amount of time she could have with each patient. It seems they wanted to rush patients through like cattle to get as many done as possible each day. Abigail, however, wanted to take more time with each patient. So she was frustrated.
Another great job became available – at a hospital this time. She applied for it and landed the job. This gal is really good at what she does.
But the last I heard, her stress levels are off the charts. This time, it is not the time constraints put on her, but rather a fellow nurse who is senior to her who makes her life miserable each day.
The stress is taking its toll on her body. It is time to de-stress and get healthier.
Can you identify with either of these problems she encountered?
What is a nurse like you to do to help relieve the stress and keep your body functioning well?
I recently wrote to my niece and asked her if she has tried massage therapy.
Massage therapy has so many benefits for all of us and especially for you as nurses.
Now, I am not a nurse, but I do run my own home business so spend a lot of time at my computer as well as juggling many stresses and deadlines. When I first scheduled a massage, I must admit that I felt a bit guilty for spending money that way. But I am big into natural health so I did it.
My massage therapist told me that I was getting a dowager’s hump as she massaged away on my back. She worked on the tension in my shoulders and neck and shared with me some exercises I could do to help.
I rescheduled . . . and continued on a monthly basis, though sometimes I would stop for 6 months or so, and then come back.
Guess what happened? As I continued with my massages, my dowager’s hump went totally away! I have very good posture and no sign of a dowager’s hump! You can see why I am such a proponent for massages.
Let me share with you 13 health benefits to keep in mind about massages:
Getting a massage . . .
1: Helps to pump oxygen and nutrients into tissues and vital organs, improving circulation
2: Lowers stress levels
3. Increases and promotes joint flexibility
4. Promotes deeper breathing
5. Improves posture and can prevent dowager’s hump (that’s me!)
6. Enhances skin tone & skin health
7. Helps to relax and soften injured, tired, and overused muscles
8. Helps with mental alertness, better focus, and improved concentration
9. Helps to release endorphins, lessening depression and anxiety
10. Can reduce pain, especially back and neck.
11. Can result in a tranquil mind
12. Increases your self-awareness
13. Helps to satisfy your innate need for human touch
Do any of these benefits resonate with you?
Tips for making massage therapy a part of your health regime:
1. Commit to putting a monthly massage into your health program and budget.
2. Do your homework to find a good massage therapist. Ask for referrals from your friends, read reviews, and then try out a few. Don’t feel you have to stick with the first one you try. Try different ones so you can evaluate and decide who you fit best with their style and personality for establishing a long-term relationship.
3. Communicate well with your massage therapist. They can’t read your mind so be sure you let them know what you like or don’t like.
4. Be sure to drink a lot of water after your massage to rehydrate your body. A good masseuse will provide water for you.
5. Plan the rest of your day to be low-key so you can relax after your massage to continue to benefit.
Being someone in the health industry, it behooves you to be the best you can be. Consider adding in massage therapy soon.
I heard back from my niece and she has tried massage therapy and wishes she could do it more.
I hope you will try massage therapy soon too.
Photo Credit: Microsoft free images http://office.microsoft.com
About the Author: Amy Hagerup is a Health and Wellness educator who is passionate about helping others reach optimum health in their body, mind, and soul. A former missionary to Africa for 23 years, Amy teaches through her many stories to help bring change in her readers’ lives. An author, speaker, and coach, Amy is married to her hero, has five children, three children-in-love, and 12 grandchildren.
You can reach Amy Hagerup at her blog http://amyhagerup.com or her Amazon author’s page at http://dld.bz/cGQvA.
Awesome guest blog post, Alicia-Joy. Thank you for having this writer to your blog. I was intrigued when I read the guilty feelings of getting a massage, of spending money on self. I know that many caregivers, nurses in particular, feel that way. Why is that? Why must we sacrifice our own fun, hobbies, health, care, what-have-you at the expense of another? I’m all for NOT doing it that way! So thanks for reinvigorating this feeling inside of me. Enjoyed the post, thank you! Elizabeth
Glad you enjoyed Amy’s article. It definitely inspired me. Caregivers are so often sacrificing their self-care. We see it time and time again. It’s such a shame because I believe you are in a better position to care for others, when you first care for yourself. Sounds so obvious, yet it is still ignored by many caregivers (nurse especially).
Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I don’t know about you, but a massage is on my horizon. I will cherish every minute of it.
Hi Elizabeth, Nice to “meet” you here. I’m so glad this resonated with you. Yes, we must be proactive to invest in our selves – both our health and our enjoyment – as you pointed out here! Glad you liked my post. Blessings, Amy