The Logical Mind, Running Guard Role In Healing
In the vast scope of practice in which every manual therapy is lumped under the massage therapy genre, it is interesting to note how the logical mind often times gets in the way of healing. Its prevalent these days to hear the axiom, “Where your mind goes, your body follows.” Or, “so as you think shall it be.” Essentially, the wisdom that has been passed down over the ages, is the importance of the mind and how you focus on its ability to assist in the healing process. If you think when you journey through the door of an “alternative” therapist that “this shit couldn’t possibly be working”, its my belief it probably won’t work at the level needed to expedite the healing process. You have had to have your head stuck in the sand of the 13th century to have not heard of the placebo effect! Who cares how the outcome is reached, all we care about as massage therapists is getting our clients on the road to wellness, which in most instances, is a pain free condition. The mind can be a dangerous thing. When was the last time a student in a massage continuing education class was taught the importance of using words to encourage the healing process and correct a client if their story revolved too much about their condition, as if the condition was an old friend whose companionship gave them a story to share about their journey.
Conditioning plays a huge role in how we view the healing process. I know of a client whose pain originated in the attachment area of the rectus femoris and caused a constantly nagging pain that wasn’t responding to pharmaceuticals or classical physical therapy. Trigger point injections were unsuccessful in dealing with the pain as well. When she finally arrived at the massage therapist’s office who was versed in Rolfing/Structural Integration, she was desperate for relief since the pain was interfering with her sleep. Her husband was a well respected surgeon who asked her after her first visit to the rolfer’s office, if she was cured? And that my friends is God’s honest truth. CURED! So you can see how what we are exposed to, forms our viewpoints concerning the viability or lack of when it comes to different forms of massage therapy techniques.
Have you ever been asked in a massage continuing education class how you approach the client with their expectations? Have you ever set boundaries so that the client is well aware of the reality concerning their challenge? Dr. Rolf left a 10 session series for her practitioners that some idiotically accused her of creating nothing more than a marketing ploy. What fools. Imagine this, if you have been on the planet 30 years (adjust the math accordingly for your age) you have been moving in gravitational forces for 250,000 hours. Needless to say the physical, emotional and environmental vectors that have entered your system over that period of time have probably had an influence on the condition that your clients have presented to you. Its worth taking the time to educate them that what they are presenting didn’t happen over night, even though it may have appeared to “just happened” and it probably ain’t going away in one hour, Hallelujah! The ten session series of Rolfing allowed for 10-15 hours of work to change the structure in gravity and hopefully eliminate the painful condition presented to the therapist, by balancing the structure. Once someone commits to the series of 10 or more sessions their is a realistic understanding of what it will take to accomplish their goals and a willingness to accept that massage technique as one that has validity for them in surmounting their challenge. They have enrolled their minds and focused positively on the potential outcome.. That’s what I call getting out of the way of the logical mind and using the power of clear intention. It works, just ask Mr. Placebo!