Podcast

Episode 129

Dec 12, 2017

Annie LaCroix tells us all about her career in massage and talks us through her favorite tips to help students get the most of of massage school. (Pssst- turns out these tips are great even if you’re well out of school.)

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EPISODE 129

Annie LaCroix tells us all about her career in massage and talks us through her favorite tips to help students get the most of of massage school. (Pssst- turns out these tips are great even if you’re well out of school.)

Things we talked about:

Special thanks to our sponsor:

  • ABMP. 

At ABMP.com/students you can join the free ABMP Student Life network and get great tips like “Easier Ways to Learn the Muscles,” plus helpful technique videos like “Draping Mistakes to Avoid.” And, if you’re preparing for the MBLEx exam, check out ABMP Exam Coach, the best test prep in massage and bodywork. With timed practice exams, unlimited quizzes, and thousands of flashcards, it will be your new favorite study buddy.


Transcript:

Sponsor message This episode is sponsored by ABMP, Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals. ABMP is dedicated to helping massage students get through school alive and lead rewarding, professional careers. At abmp.com/students, you can join the free ABMP Student Life network and get great tips like easier ways to learn the muscles, plus helpful technique videos like draping mistakes to avoid. And if you’re preparing for the MBLEx exam, check out ABMP Exam Coach, the best test prep in massage and bodywork. With timed practice exams, unlimited quizzes, and thousands of flashcards, it will be your new favorite study buddy. All this and more at abmp.com/students.

Allissa Haines Hello, everyone. Welcome to the Massage Business Blueprint deep-dive podcast, where we discuss the business side of massage therapy. I am Allissa Haines, and I am here with our deep-dive guest, Annie LaCroix today. Annie, say hello.

Annie LaCroix Hello. Thank you so much for having me. I love being part of the Massage Business Blueprint.

AH Thank you. You’ve been with us since the beginning. Thank you for doing this. And it is — Annie, is it even light out where — right now?

AL No. It’s actually not. [laughs]

AH Oh my gosh. I was going to say we’re doing this at the crack of dawn, and I’m on the East coast; so it’s not that crack of dawn-ish, but for me it is. And Annie is a crazy early bird and was “Sure! We can do this at 7:00 a.m. my time.” Holy moly.

AL That’s right. Got to get stuff done, man. I’ve been up for two hours.

AH Oh my God. That’s — I can’t even think about that. So, Annie. Let me tell you guys a little bit about Annie. Annie is a massage therapist and also owns a school in Wenatchee, Washington. Did I say that right?

AL You did.

AH Yay! Annie’s school is the Columbia River Institute of Massage Therapy. Annie does a whole bunch of stuff. She has been on Washington state leadership for the AMTA; she was the president. She is a — the list is just bonkers: a researcher for a pathology textbook and reviewer, and she also formed this really cool Wenatchee massage co-op next to her school to help new graduates get their footing as independent practitioners out of school, and she’s a member of her chamber of commerce and the rotary club. I’m going to stop talking now because this intro ended up being way longer than I anticipated already. Let’s hop right into it. How did you get into massage?

AL Oh gosh. It’s such a circuitous route. Okay. Back in college — I’ll try to make this relatively short, but back — I went to college for anything that had nothing to do with math and science, which ended up being communications, which is ironic because I love science now, and I teach a lot of it. But I went to school for communications and decided to become a social worker. So I was a social worker for a few years, decided “No, I’m not going to be a social worker; I’m going to be a chef.” Went to culinary school, did that for a while, ended up relocating to this area where I’m at now, and then ended up — I got married and became part of my now ex-husband construction company, and so I was — I worked in a construction company as the bookkeeper for a long time. And then during that time, just randomly, I knew I wanted to do something different, and I went to an open house for a massage school. I didn’t really know much about massage; I’d never had a massage; I just — it sort of appealed to me. So I went, and I enrolled. And then I got a massage, because you needed to get a massage to get into school; you needed to get two or three, I think. So I went and got a few massages and that — I didn’t really look back from there.

So I became a massage therapist. I opened my own private practice right out of school. I’ve never been a great employee, and I learned that a long time ago; so I didn’t have a job for someone else right out of school. I opened my own practice, had my private practice for several years, started teaching continuing education. A local massage school, that is no longer in existence but was at the time, needed a teacher, and I said, “Uh. Sure. Why not.” And I jumped in and I started teaching, loved it, thought it was great and knew at some point that I wanted to open my own school. And it turned out that that school ended up closing down sooner than expected, and so I said, “Okay. Let’s do it.” And so I opened my school six years ago, and I haven’t looked back. That’s how I got into it. It was a long — lots of different detours and stuff, but here I am.

AH I love this no-nonsense aspect to be like “Ah. I heard about massage, checked out the school, totally decided to do it.” Okay. Because that’s kind of what happened to Lauren, and that’s — Lauren Cates was our guest in the last deep-dive episode, and I know you know Lauren — and that’s kind of what happened to me and a surprising number of people. I think it’s so weird how this very pragmatically woos us in. Like “Oh, all right. This is a thing I could probably do. Let’s check it out.” And it just sucks you right in, doesn’t it?

AL It does. And I find that — I know we’re going to get into student life a little bit later, but I find that with a lot of students that they come here to check out the school, and they go “I don’t know, it just seems like I should be here.” And I go “I get it. I get it.” It’s a theme; it’s a theme.

AH So you’ve got a whole bunch of balls in the air; you’ve got a bunch of different things happening right now. So tell us what you do now. What’s your day and your work and your stuff like?

AL Okay. Let’s see. Pretty much everything I do is the school, because it’s a small school; I don’t take more than eight students at a time. I’ve done everything. I recently hired an assistant, which — I could actually do a whole podcast on that — has been life changing. So anyway — that’s a different subject; I won’t get into that. So my day right now is I basically teach, I work on curriculum in the evening, I teach four days a week, and then I have my student clinic which is a couple other days a week, and I work in that. And then I am also getting my master’s right now in human nutrition and functional medicine; so I do my own homework usually early in the morning so that’s why I get up early; usually from 5:00 to 7:00 I do my own homework. Then I teach, and then after school I work on whatever we’re going to do the next day. Sometimes I do something like yoga to calm myself down. [laughs]

AH Tell me about your school. I know your school is a little different from a lot of the other ones that I have, at least, learned about and looked into and even went to. So tell us about what you wanted in a school and what you implemented and why. I know you had very specific vision for Columbia River; so what was that and how have you applied that?

AL First of all, I wanted it to be small, and I knew that, and that’ll never change. That is something I know won’t ever — I know people say “never say never,” but there’s certain designs that you just know. And I knew I wanted to be small so I could focus on each student and find out sort of their individual talents in massage. I call it “finding their home”. I tell my students that I’m going to help you find your home in this massage world because we all have different homes, and we all have different things that we’re good at, and so I feel like in a small school I can do that. That was very important to me. I wanted to be — I love science; I love teaching science; I love everything about science. And so I wanted it to be heavy in the evidence-informed practice, scientifically-based curriculum without losing sight of the fact that massage is an art and — so those two things were really important to me. I wanted a lot — let me rephrase that — I wanted more hours than is typical, especially more hands on hours than is typical; so I do have quite an extensive student clinic. I do 150 hours in my student clinic, which is more than a lot of schools that I know do. But keeping it small was probably my main goal, and also preparing students for lifelong — not just to pass the test that you need to pass, but to be a lifelong, holistic practitioner in all of the things that that means, which, again, I could talk about forever. But really preparing them to be successful in this profession for a long amount of time.

AH I’m totally veering off our prepped kind of questions, because I think it’s really important, and I took a class this weekend that had a real big element of newer pain science to it. How do you get students into a more evidence-informed approach? What does that look like in the classroom? What kinds of activities and assignments, and what’s your approach for doing that without — people who might not be inherently science oriented — without them glazing over?

AL Definitely. That is a big issue. So first of all, no one enrolls in my school without knowing that’s what’s going to happen. I know you’ve looked at my website, but it’s pretty clear that if you — that I’m science based or science informed, wherever you want to go with that. And during my interview and stuff, I tell them it’s heavy on science, it’s heavy on — we do a lot of research and stuff like that; so they already know it going in. And then it is hard in the classroom to get the students excited about it, but no one enrolls in my school without knowing that we’re going to go down that path. And then I do a lot of activities; I start really small. I start with find a fact on social media — fact, I’m using air quotes — and then prove it by finding the data and finding all that stuff. So that’s a good exercise to kind of learn that maybe things aren’t true just because they’re on Facebook, which I know is a shocker for a lot of people. But that’s how I start. And then in the anatomy and physiology class, we do more research. And then in the pathology class, we teach research literacy and then how to take a pathology and how to see how massage might benefit that pathology and support it with research and those type of articles. That’s a very short summary, but I start with baby steps and I work them up into how to read a study and how to evaluate if the study is a good study. For example, who funded that study? Because if the study is funded by somebody close to the outcome, then that’s an important piece of information, right? How to tell how many people are in the study, blah, blah, blah. I’ll stop myself on this one, but you get the idea, right?

AH I do. And that’s brilliant; I love that. I want to see that in action. So what is your fantasy job/location/training? Your “if I won the lottery” plan for your career — and you can’t say exactly what I’m doing now — I at least want to hear some addition or expansion or grand fantastical plan of what you would do if you were given the resources and the time.

AL Okay. You must have read my mind because I was like “Oh I’m going to be that boring person that doesn’t want to change.” But I can definitely change it a little bit. I do happen to love what I do; I do love it. So I wouldn’t want to stop what I’m doing. I’m not one of those people that would say “Great! I won the lottery. I’m done doing this.” So what I would probably change is I would, instead of doing two classes a year so I’m going all year, I would do one class a year so that I have some time off, and I’ll get to my fantasy part of that in a second, but I would do one class a year. And with those students, money’s no object, time’s no object. I would take that little group of students, because it’s always small, and I would fly them to my bucket list instructors. It’s funny that you mention Lauren Cates because that would be a bucket list instructor example. I would fly all my students to take a class from Lauren. And I’d fly all my students to go take a class from Ruth at their places, right? I know the logical thing is to fly the instructor to me, but this is fantasy, right? So I would fly my students everywhere, and we’d go learn from all these amazing people. And then in my break, I would travel around the world and get bodywork everywhere. There’s my fantasy.

AH Dang —

AL [laughs] It’s a good one, right?

AH — I hope it’s spliced in with sitting on a beach reading a trashy novel and beverage in your hand.

AL For sure. For sure. I would be sitting on the beach waiting for the bodywork, and then they’d come to me, I’d get some awesome — I’d get Thai massage or whatever it was, and then I’d go back to sitting on the beach and reading. I do love the science, but I would like to read something in my life in the next decade that’s not about science.

AH So what have you — what was the last thing — if you can even remember — what’s the last piece of fiction that you read or even the last non-work-related book? Because you are just a plethora of resources for work-related and personal-growth related literature. I’ve read a bunch of things you’ve suggested and hated and loved exactly 50/50 split on those. But what’s the last thing you read for fun, man?

AL Well for fun was — when you added that on I almost had to change my answer, but I read A Little Life, and I cannot remember the author right now. But I read A Little Life, which was — it’s a very thick novel, and it was beautiful and heartbreaking and wonderful; so I don’t know if it was fun, but it was — I think it’s — I would recommend it to everybody. Such a beautiful book, beautiful book.

AH I read the review of that and immediately thought “Nope. There’s no way I can get through this.” But, everyone, I’ll put the link in the show notes, A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara, I think is how it’s said.

AL Thank you. Yes, yes.

AH I actually had it bookmarked since you told me about it. I’m finding myself very curious what people are doing to shift their brains away from massage on occasion, because I’ve had to do that myself a lot lately. I got a little overwhelmed and just a little too go, go, go, and realized that I hadn’t read a book for pleasure in a really long time. So I went a very different route from you. I have been reading Judy Blume’s grown up books: Smart Women and In the Unlikely Event and Wifey, which are — because they were written 80s — 70s, 80s, they’re cracking me up. But it’s Judy Blume; so how do you not love it? You love it. And we have chosen very different routes for our pleasure reads, Annie.

AL We do. Well, I’ll tell you the other thing that I do, because to your point, to get away from — sometimes you just need a break, is I do a lot of podcasts because I am in books a lot. Sometimes I just need — with a podcast, I can put my phone in my pocket and walk around and clean the school or do things I need to do or take a walk and be listening to something else. So I listen to a lot of podcasts, and my podcasts where I go away from everything are true crime, which are — apparently, I have this need for dark —

AH Yeah, a little bit of a dark side there, Annie.

AL [laughs] Exactly. But I do love the true crime; so those are the things that take me away from — give me a little mental break from what I’m doing.

AH Sweet. I love getting people’s histories, and it’s so interesting to see where people come from from doing bookkeeping for a construction company. I love that. All right. So we are going to jump into our halftime break and a sponsor I’m really excited about, and I know you are too. And then we’ll get into the expertise question of how to survive massage school. So let us thank and welcome ABMP.

Sponsor message This episode is sponsored by ABMP, Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals. ABMP is dedicated to helping massage students get through school alive and lead rewarding, professional careers. At abmp.com/students, you can join the free ABMP Student Life network and get great tips like easier ways to learn muscles, helpful technique videos like draping mistakes to avoid, which I feel like I need to review. And if you’re preparing for the MBLEx exam, and I know so many of you are, check out the ABMP Exam Coach. It is the best test-prep reference in massage and bodywork. It’s got timed practice exams, unlimited quizzes, thousands of flashcards; it is your new favorite study buddy. You can get all of this and so much more at abmp.com/students.

AH Annie, I want to let you freestyle a little bit, because I know that you use ABMP resources at your school. Tell me about how you use them and what you love.

AL So much about them. I use Exam Coach quite a bit; my students use Exam Coach. And then I also direct my students to all of the student resources that they have, which are — a lot of them would be useful for this list I’m going to give of how to survive massage school. But, they’ve got great time-management stuff, great flash cards, tips on how to study, just — it’s a real great resource for my students, not to mention as a teacher. But focusing on students, it’s a great resource. I love it. Exam Coach really makes a big difference.

AH I’m thrilled and so grateful that they are sponsoring this episode for us.

AL Yeah. Thanks a lot, ABMP. That’s awesome.

AH Annie LaCroix, owner of Columbia River Institute of Massage Therapy, what are your favorite tips for surviving massage school?

AL Well, let me start with — I’m going to start with a couple easy ones that are probably obvious and people have said before, and then I’ve got a couple other big ones.

The first one, I would say, is study in small chunks rather than “Okay. I’m not going to study for a few days, and then I’m going to cram for hours.” I’d say, study in small chunks.

Time management. Mastering time management in massage school is going to be your friend. I am a big fan — I teach this to my students — I am a big fan of a routine. In fact, my students have to make a calendar and block out all of their time. They have to block out time that is for personal growth; they have to block out time for studying; they have to block out time for sleeping. So time management and routine are going to be your friend.

Take notes old-school. Do not take notes on a computer, on a tablet, on your phone. There’s a lot of neuroscience to back this up, but pen-paper notetaking, and then copying your notes — so I tell students, “Take notes in class. Let them be messy, whatever you want to do, and then recopy them later, nicely, to make it a study guide for yourself.” And that process of recopying will really help you to retain the information. I actually don’t allow students to use any device to take notes except pen and paper. They can’t bring a computer in; they can’t take notes on their phone, anything like that. And I know that there is some argument about that, but I’ve got the science to back it up.

I tell students to “teach to learn”. When you learn something, listening to it or reading it is just one way of learning, and it’s usually not the highest amount of retention. When you teach something, you learn it. So I say if you have a long drive to school, teach the dashboard of your car, teach your cat, teach your dog, teach a tree. But if you just stand up — don’t stand up in your car — but if you stand up in your living room, and you explain to your dog all about the muscles, that process of explaining it to something else will really help reinforce, because you’ll be listening to yourself, and you’ll say, “Wait, wait. That’s not quite right.” And then you reference the book, you get it right, and you go back to teaching your dog or your cat. And then you have super smart animals; so it’s sort of a win-win right there.

AH [laughs] Cats are natural massage therapists so that works out quite well.

AL They really are. And you know that I have cats, and so my cats have learned a lot over the years. I think they’re going to take over pretty soon.

So those are my first, more obvious kind of concrete things. Do this, do this, do this. Time management, routine — make a routine, take notes on paper, and then teach what you’ve learned to reinforce it.

The other three are sort of bigger, general philosophies that I really think will help in school. Be willing to be wrong. I’ll ask a question in class, and students are hesitant to answer because they might be wrong. But you’re in school; it’s okay to be wrong; this is the point, right? And so I tell them “If you answer and it’s wrong, then we get to discuss it and you’ll remember it so much better.” I believe that some of our best learning experiences come through failure, and if we can allow ourselves to be vulnerable enough to fail and be wrong and do it in front of people in a class, your depth of learning will be so much greater than someone who’s always not wanting to say it out loud in case in might be wrong. And I think that’s really important, because I think it’s just our human nature to not want to be the person who shouts out the wrong answer, right?

AH It really is. And that’s a huge — it’s a huge issue that I think, actually, grade schools and middle schools and even high schools are starting to tackle. A friend of mine is a scientist; he’s a chemist, and he’s constantly pointing out to me and to his kids the best way to learn is to — all of science is failing and trying again —

AL Yes. Yes.

AH — That’s what science is. Thinking about something, trying an idea, failing at it, trying a new version of it. That is how we will cure cancer; that is how we found a polio vaccine. We tried a thing; it failed; we adapted it; we tried more. And everything that you learn in that process is fine. As someone who was always so afraid to speak up in school, it really annoys me that it took me 42 years to get to that point where I don’t mind answering something and thinking that it could be wrong, but knowing that it’s going to get me on the path to something right. I love to hear that that’s being really clearly applied in a classroom and in a massage classroom. That’s a big deal.

AL I do the full immersion version of this where students have to answer something, and it’s in a Google group, right? So they’ve answered it in an email that everybody can see, and then I put it up on the screen in the classroom, and we go through what’s right and what’s wrong and what could be adjusted and what’s sort of warmishly right. So their own words are up on a screen for everybody to look at, and we all pick it apart, and it’s a good learning opportunity for review, and it’s hard for them in the beginning. But then when they get into it, they go “Okay. I see this. I see this.” So it teaches you to take criticism and to take feedback and to not be so emotionally attached to words that you’re putting on paper, and you’re just trying to learn something. And it also helps them learn through their mistakes. I do the full immersion version of —

AH That terrifies me.

AL [laughs] I know. Yeah. I know. It terri–

AH I take back anything I said about visiting your school.

AL [laughs] I won’t do it to you. I won’t. I won’t tell you ahead of time.

AH Excellent.

AL So then — be willing to be wrong. I just said — Okay. Another huge principle that I say in school is that it’s not about the massage. You are going to be a massage therapist, but let’s get there later, let’s get there later. Make school about you and about being the best therapist you can be and don’t worry about the client. So students come in and they say “Okay. I want to give a great massage. Am I going to learn this? Am I going to learn this? Am I going to learn this?” And I go “Okay. Pump the brakes.” We’re going to do foundational stuff. We are going to be all about body mechanics, and we are going to be about body mechanics over and over and over again. And we’re going to be about self-care. And we’re going to be about where we’re at in this world and how we position ourselves with other people, because that’s going to inform your ethics. So I think school for students should be about building yourself as the best therapist you can be for you so you can do it for a long, long, long time. When you’re getting feedback on body mechanics, spend your time there. In fact, when my students are exchanging bodywork, I don’t let the student on the table, in the beginning, have many preferences. I don’t — I say we’re just learning. Don’t worry about more pressure, less pressure right now, because we’re not client focused in the beginning; we’re therapist focused in the beginning. I’m sure people would have a lot of opinions about that, but that’s my thing. And I just tell the students the massage will come, but the bigger part of being in school is preparing you to be successful in this. And then after we lay that foundation, you can give an awesome massage too.

AH I very much wish that body mechanics had played a larger role in the very beginning of my work. I definitely developed bad habits very early on, and that has come back to bite me a few times with various little tweaks and injuries. I really like that approach, Annie.

AL My body mechanics — I think of my students– I walk into a room, even if they’re not doing massage, and everybody sits up because I’m so used to saying “Okay, watch your body mechanics.”

And then the final thing I would say is that massage schools are generally relatively short, right? In the scope of other careers, they’re relatively short; my program’s 10 months. And a lot of students are busy, right? A lot of times they’re working at another job or they’ve got kids or whatever it is. So it’s easy to say I just got to get through this; I just got to get through this. But I would say do everything you can to be present in that moment and squeeze every ounce of life you can out of your instructors and out of those moments. You’re paying for this, right? So squeeze every bit of worth you can. Be present. Show up and be curious and interested to learn, and when your instructors are there, they have knowledge and ask them questions and get the knowledge out of them, because you’re not going to be in this situation again. You’re actually going to go to a place that can be a career of a lot of solitude unless you are in a community, right? So you’re not going to be in this sense of community that you have in school probably ever again, except maybe in brief continuing education classes; so be present in every moment. Recognize that it’s a relatively short amount of time and get every ounce that you can from it in every way that you can do that.

AH Brilliant. Those were six seriously good tips for getting through massage school alive. Thank you, Annie! Thank you so much.

AL If I can just say one other thing to sort of bring it all together is the way to get everything out of it and to be present is to start at the beginning and manage your time well. So right? We have to do these very concrete things to do these very non-concrete things. So manage the time and then the rest will come.

AH And that is the number one problem — and I know you know this as a business owner and as someone who juggles multiple things, multiple projects, multiple jobs, multiple roles –figuring out how to manage your time so you are not overloaded. And time management is also the art of saying no to things and the art of shutting down activities that do not bring you joy or bring you money, really, that don’t sustain you in one important way or another. And that time management will only serve you moving forward, even if you never decide to own your own business, even if you go the route of being an employee or a contract or whatever, that time management is a huge concept and can be applied to every aspect of your career. Time management in the massage room. Time management in handling your business tasks. Time management in looking at the overall schedule of your life and how you want your time portioned out among the various responsibilities and goals and desires. That’s a huge — that’s why we probably have written a ton more about time management and productivity at The Blueprint than lots of other things because the root of success, I think, in business is not glamorous; it’s not sexy; it is structure.

AL It is structure.

AH There’s nothing magical about it.

AL [laughs] I say that all the time. It’s just doing the work in a structured — you just have to do it, right? You have to — and you’re a business owner; so I know you appreciate this, but you just have to clean the bathroom. No matter how glamorous it is — I’m using air quotes, glamorous, to own a business, you have to clean the bathroom and that has to be scheduled.

AH Yep. It does. And I say that to myself every time I take the trash out at the office. “Yep. Small business ownership is super glamorous,” as I was taking it out in the rain yesterday. And it was my own darned fault for not doing it in the morning before it started raining. And I had to take it out, because it was my own trash from my salad at lunch that was going to be smelly if I didn’t. Ain’t nothing glamorous about this, people. But crazy rewarding and not really that hard when you get the routing going.

AL It’s not that hard, and because we’re talking about students going into a career in massage, I also want to say that if you’re a student, or you’re looking at being a student, you’re about to go into a career that is amazing in its uniqueness in the sense that everyone loves to see a massage therapist, and everyone feels good after they see a massage therapist, and the career is so rewarding and so wonderful to be able to interact with people in a health-care setting. We’re health-care providers in the State of Washington; so I recognize that may be different for other states — so in a health-care setting in a way that no other healthcare providers do. This amazing, rewarding career can be yours for years and decades and decades and decades if you set the routine, set the body mechanics, set the structure — it’s the structure, right? Body mechanics is structure, your routine’s structure; it’s all structure. And if you just take the time to set that foundation beautifully in the beginning, you’ve got the best career on the planet, in my opinion.

AH I came from a retail pharmacy experience where nobody was ever happy to be at a pharmacy. Nobody was ever happy about giving their money. They were sick, usually, when they were there, and they were angry because they have to pay some co-pay that was ridonkulous. I went from that experience of customer interaction to massage where people are thrilled to walk in my office, feel fantastic the whole time they’re with me. Even if there’s someone in pain, I am doing something for them that is taking them somewhat out of pain. Even, at the very least, if it’s just getting them in a cozy position for 60 minutes, or letting them doze for 60 minutes, and then they’re happy to give me their money.

AL I know! [laughs]

AH What? And I still feel like that’s a little bit of a scam. Really? You’re paying me for this? And I just raised my rates, and I was talking to my office mate yesterday about how weird it feels coming out of my mouth. I used to say, “That’s $90 for the hour” and now I have to say, “That’s $100 for the hour.” And it still sounds foreign to my face to say it, but nobody’s blinked; nobody’s even blinked at it. How crazy is that?

AL We spend time in class reconciling that. That you can love what you do and make money doing it —

AH I’ve never–

AL — That’s something massage therapists have to reconcile.

AH — Yeah. And I’ve never had trouble with that. I’ve never had trouble accepting money for massage except for my nieces and nephews when they try to pay me I’m like, “No, sweetie, you’re not doing that.” But it’s strange having that — and that was a goal for me when I hit 10 years of massage to be charging $100 an hour. And I did not meet that goal; I was two-and-a-half-years late on that, which was my own fault, and that won’t happen again. But it’s such an interesting thing to really recognize no one blinked. I’m the only one that feels weird about that. This is — anyhow — a little off track, but I wanted to tell that story going from a job where no one was ever happy to see me or give me their money to this is pretty darned cool.

AL It is cool. It’s awesome. We are very fortunate people.

AH We are. And we’re fortunate to have educators like you. Everyone, you can learn more about Annie LaCroix if you would like at crimassage.com. I will have that link to her website in the show notes as well as the books she mentioned and a couple other things and the link to the abmp.com/students, who again, we are so grateful for their support of students, of us, and their sponsorship of this podcast. It really helps us serve you. That is wrapping it up.

If you have any questions for us here at the podcast, please feel free to contact us at podcast@massagebusinessblueprint.com. The “us” is my other half of this business, Michael Reynolds, who joins me for our Friday podcast. Tuesdays are all mine, baby. That will wrap it up for today. Thank you, Annie LaCroix, for being our guest.

AL Thank you so much for having me. I always love being here, and I love being part of this MBB community.

AH Good. Because we’re bringing you back soon. Everyone, have a wonderful day and a crazy successful career.

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