Allissa and Michael do a mid-year review of their 3 words for 2019. Check-in time!
Learn more about our ongoing 3 words project here.
Sponsor message This episode is sponsored by Yomassage. Yomassage’s mission is to make therapeutic touch accessible. To make this happen, they created a modality in which clients can receive touch in a small group setting. Yomassage practitioners combine restorative stretch, mindfulness, and therapeutic touch. In addition to offering massage at an accessible rate, Yomassage classes appeal to more people because they are fully clothed and offered in a safe environment. Yomassage practitioner trainings are taking place all over the United States. You can learn more and find a training near you at massagebusinessblueprint.com/yomassage. And for our Blueprint listeners, you can get $50 off any trainings in July and August 2019 using the code BLUEPRINT. And again, you can go to massagebusinessblueprint.com/yomassage to learn more.
Allissa Haines Hello, everyone. Welcome to the Massage Business Blueprint podcast, where we discuss the business side of massage therapy. I am Allissa Haines.
Michael Reynolds And I’m Michael Reynolds.
AH And I have been throwing all kinds of last-minute stuff at Michael this morning, and then —
MR I love it.
AH And then not paid attention to the fact that I was supposed to open this podcast, so y’all should know that he was just very gracious about waiting like 20 seconds for me to pop in.
MR [Laughing] I slacked you the word “go.” I don’t know if you saw that.
AH He literally sent me a message that said go, and I was like oh, I’m hosting this one. So yay, good for me.
MR We are pulling it together this morning.
AH Anyhow — we are. You know, I’d said we just are — we’re running into — I don’t know, what does Miley Cyrus say? Came in like a cannonball?
MR Wrecking ball.
AH Yeah, a wrecking ball. Wrecking ball.
AH This is where — this is bad. So — [Laughing]
AH Yeah, it’s zany. It’s zany times here people. But I’m really, really —
MR We’re just humanizing this podcast, just making sure —
AH We are humanizing the heck —
MR — you know that we are real people that are far from perfect.
AH We are. And it’s — that’s actually kind of what a lot of our topic is about today because we are going to do our mid-year revisit of our three words. If you’re new around here, every January, in lieu of — what do they call them? — resolutions. Sorry, I was going to be like, revelations.
AH In lieu of resolutions — of new year resolutions, Michael and I choose three words to kind of help us prioritize and guide how we want the next year to go. So we’ve been doing this — Michael’s been doing this for several years. I popped on a few years ago. We’ve done some written posts about it. We podcast it every year. And we decided — I think we started last year doing a mid-year check-in to keep us on track with how we are doing staying true to what we envisioned for ourselves as people and as business owners and such at the beginning of each year.
So I’m going to jump right in. Is that okay, Michael?
MR That is okay.
AH Okay. So my three words for 2019 were work, patience, and friendship. And we’ll put the Episode 198 where we go through these at the beginning of this year and really talk more specifically about them, if you want to go back and listen to that.
So I — yeah. Yeah, work. I’m overwhelmed, and I’m actually really — I’m overwhelmed by how proud I am of how I’ve actually stuck to this one pretty well. So work was my first word. And I really wanted to more clearly structure my work schedule and stick to my work time and tasks. I wanted to be more productive in the time that I was at work and then not think about work when I wasn’t at work. And I needed to dramatically increase my client numbers — they had fallen off in the last year or two, and I wanted to really knock out a great column for ABMP’s Massage and Bodywork magazine. So that was my goal. And as for work-wise, I feel really, really good about it. I, at the end of last year with this in mind, joined a networking group. I spiffed up my website, I added some new content. I feel like I got my act together, and as — I guess as a result, my client numbers are way up. I think I had like 70-some clients in March, which was really good for me. And I’m hovering exactly where I want to be in the mid to low 60s on a monthly basis. And in fact, my May numbers were really good and I took a week off. So it’s been really, really good.
AH I have almost completed all of my 2019 content. I’m in the middle of writing the final column to submit for 2019, for all of our ABMP columns. And I kind of spontaneously-ish came up for a idea for a feature article, submitted it, it went out in the last issue, and it made the cover. So I feel like work-wise, I’m doing great. And I’m active in my networking group. There was some change in leadership, and I kind of took over some admin responsibilities in my networking group, which actually ended up with me leading — chairing our meeting the other day when the dude who chairs it was out sick. And I didn’t stink at it, so that was exciting. So I feel like work-wise — there’s more to do. I have some goals. I’m still struggling a little bit with when I sit down to do some deep thinking with a big project, having some attention span issues and some focus stuff and easily distracted by rotating the laundry. So I’m working on that, but mostly I feel really good.
And then my second bit was patience. I wanted to be more patient with myself and more patient with the people I love. And that’s pretty clear cut. And I’m going to give this one like a meh. I think I’m doing a good job of readjusting what I care about. I’m choosing my battles, I think — I’m choosing my angst with the people around me and myself — like am I really going to get aggravate with myself and get snippy because I didn’t do meal prep on Sunday or can I just let that go and go to Trader Joe’s and pick up a couple of prepared things that are going to work for me. I’m doing a good job of things like screw it, we’re all going out for ice cream for dinner and not caring about little things that really don’t matter, and I think that that’s helping. There’s, again, a long way to go there.
And then my final word was friendships. I have definitely failed to nurture my friendships in the last couple of years and I’m feeling that. It’s making me feel really distant from the people I love, so I kind of set a loose goal of having, like, once a month dinner or lunch or coffee with a friend, or a walk or something. I wanted one friend event per month. I’m pretty sure I failed miserably on that. I know I’ve had a couple, but I know we’re six months in now and I’ve only done that two or three times. But I also have kind of flipped the script on this because I’m trying to focus on my work and my income and also family stuff, that I kind of needed to redefine what friendship has meant to me. And I’ve got a couple of friends going through some really hard things that are also time and labor intensive for them. So it’s been tricky. So I’ve kind of readjusted that, and now I make an effort a couple of times a week to make sure that I am reaching out via text to people, even if it’s just to say — and this is frequently a text that people will get from me, I just wanted you to know that I’m thinking of you. Hope you’re doing okay. No reply needed. Because I know people are pretty elbow deep in their own difficult stuff, and I just want to give people a moment of feeling good, a virtual hug, versus making any demands on their time that will cause more stress. And so I’m happy that I’ve adapted that. It’s not in lieu of real connection with people, it’s just a placeholder because things are hard for a lot of people right now.
And that’s where I’m at. What do you think, Michael?
MR Nice. I’m really happy for your business success. I know you said you were kind of struggling a little bit with the others, but the business success is really exciting. So congratulations.
AH Thank you. It’s taken me a long time to catch up on some old debt, business and personal. Because I expanded my business like nine years ago — or maybe it was ten years ago — yeah, ten years ago — right at the time I separated from my ex-husband and put myself in a really financially precarious situation, which I know I’ve mentioned before. And then three years ago I did a big expansion, and then I had to downsize from that because it — I had to kind of — I moved forward two steps and then back one step. But now I’m in a really good sustainable business situation. And with my massage practice taking off again, I feel like I’m making real money. I feel like I’m making a good full-time income that is allowing me to pay off things and breathe a little bit, which is really, really nice. So there’s that.
But I’ve got — stemming from that I have a whole bunch of ideas about upcoming podcasts and webcasts on how I’ve done that and what I’ve — what systems I’ve tried that have failed and what I’ve landed on that works well for me. And all that’s coming up in the next six months, people.
AH Or next year, I don’t know. We’ll see. But soon.
Michael, who’s our halftime sponsor?
AH Yay, jojoba.
Sponsor message It’s super exciting because this June 2019, you can get 20% off — it’s almost the end of June, people, so pull it together — you can get 20% off orders of $35 —
MR [Laughing] Pull it together.
AH Pull it together.
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AH Michael, tell me how you’re doing on your three words, yo.
MR No too bad. Not too bad. So my three words were family, grow, and select.
So I’ll start with family. So family was really kind of multifaceted. It meant, literally, family, like my family. It also — in my mind, it encompassed friendships because I consider friendships chosen family. So I kind of lump that into friends and family. And the whole point of the word family was to remind me to stay very focused on what’s important. And I, like many workaholic type personalities, have a tendency to get very, very, very focused on work and to inadvertently get not focused enough on family and friendships. And so I wouldn’t say I’m terrible at that, but I have a tendency just to focus so much on work and think that’s the most important thing. So that was a reminder that the work I do is ultimately in support of what’s really important, which is family.
And so I think I’m doing a pretty good job because, I mean, last year at the end of the year, I sold an entire business for the purpose of spending more time with my family. [Laughing] So I think I get a pass on this one pretty well. I went from — I mean, I wasn’t working like crazy, but I had a lot of stress, a lot of time, and a lot of — mostly just stress focused on this business I’d owned for over 20 years, and I thought, you know what? I don’t want to do it anymore. I want to do something different and I want to create lifestyle businesses that support my ability to spend more time with my family and not have stress get in the way of that. Because even — if you’re spending time with your family but you have stress form business and work, it’s still not quality time; you’re not really present. And so I wanted to be able to be present when I was going to the park with my four-year-old and going on dates with my wife and doing family activities and being able to really be in the present. And I think I am getting much, much better at that. So I’m really happy where that’s going.
Next, grow. So this also goes along with what’s happened recently. So I was feeling very stagnant in the business I’d owned for a couple decades. It was a marketing agency, and I loved a lot of things about it. I loved and still love the people I worked with and a lot of good things were wrapped up in that. But again, it was causing a lot of stress, it was kind of stagnant, the passion, for me, wasn’t there anymore for it, and I wasn’t growing. The business wasn’t growing, I wasn’t growing, nobody was growing. We were just kind of status quo. And that’s just not any good. That’s just not helping anybody. So by selling the business and by focusing more energy on the new companies that I am involved in — including Massage Business Blueprint, including some other things, including my financial planning and advisory firm that I just launched this year — I am now incredibly excited to grow these businesses, whereas before it was like, oh, I got to them when I got to them, but I was really having to babysit this other business that was just not fulfilling anybody anymore. Now I am focusing on growing multiple startup businesses that are so much fun. I am back in the zone of excited about marketing and technology and money and finance and operations and productivity and learning and personal development and all the stuff that goes with that. So the growth is happening, both from a revenue standpoint, but more importantly from a satisfaction, a fulfillment, and an emotional standpoint. So I feel good about that. I feel like that’s working.
Then finally, the word select was to remind me to not make the same — I’m going to go ahead and say it boldly — the same mistakes I made in business previously, which was to not be selective enough; to kind of let business happen to me as opposed to being intentional about my business. And so that was a reminder that I am in charge of selecting what I want in my life. And when it applies to business, I am in charge of selecting the types of clients I want to take on, the type of business I want to create, the types of services I want to provide. I am in charge of selecting that. And I should be responsible for selecting the types of clients, the type of services, the type of businesses I want to grow. I’m in charge of that, and I need to be very selective. And that’s probably the one I’m still not great at, but I’m better at it than I used to be.
So in general, I would give myself probably a B minus overall with my three words. I would say family and grow are probably an A minus. Select is probably a C plus, maybe a B minus. So that’s kind of where I am. So I feel fairly positive.
AH I am not giving myself any letter grades because I don’t need that. I don’t like competition.
AH So yeah.
MR Well, I don’t think it’s a competition. It’s more of a check in — more of a status check for me. It’s not a competition.
AH Okay, I’m giving myself an A plus-plus on everything. [Laughing]
MR You do you.
AH I’m just teasing.
MR I would agree with that. I think you’re doing well.
AH I think you’re actually doing better on select than you think. I do.
MR Maybe, maybe.
AH You’ve gone back to structuring your time so you have a full day — I don’t know once or twice a week to do deep work. And your structuring your appointments well. I think you’re actually doing much better on that than you think. But, you know, whatever. You do you, baby.
MR Thank you. [Laughing]
AH All right, that wraps it up, people. And I just want to give you a head’s up, we’ve done a handful of episodes in a row that are a little more philosophical, that are a little more thoughtful. We did our podcast recommendations last week and before that we talked about how there really no perfect system for your business, and you know, there’s been a lot of less tangible stuff the last couple of weeks. But I want you to know that the next few weeks we are deep-diving into some interesting, potentially complicated, but fascinating issues that people come into when they’re massage therapist — in their massage therapy businesses.
If you have something you want us to talk about or help you through, by all means email us: firstname.lastname@example.org. Those emails come to Michael and I. We will not just answer you and answer your questions — if it’s a quick answer, we’ll jot it right down to you. If it’s a more complicated answer we’ll take some time and either answer it in writing or via a podcast episode. So know that you can get to us that way, and we love your emails.
And that’s what I have to say. If you like this podcast, tell one of your massage friends that you like this podcast and show them on their device how to listen to podcasts. And that would be really, really awesome.
MR And we’re on Spotify now.
AH Oh, oh, oh, we just got a message about that. Did you — oh, wow. That’s —
MR Yeah, yeah. So thank you to one of our community members and listeners who actually reached out to us via Facebook and said, hey, I’m using Spotify now for podcasts but I can’t find you guys, can you help me out? And so I said, well, sure. I submitted us to Spotify, within a couple hours we were listed, so we are now on Spotify.
AH See? That’s how responsive we are. And Michael handled it so quickly that I didn’t even know that it got handled. Like, holy moly. Less than 24 hours —
MR Olivia Pope style.
AH Thanks, man. That’s amazing. Yeah, so, hey, we’re on Spotify. So tell your friends or whatever. Do whatever you want. I hope that we have been helpful to you today. I hope that you have a wonderful, successful, business-y day.
MR Thanks, everyone.