You might have known March 20th as the United Nations International Day of Happiness, but as of 2018 it will also be known as the Global Massage Makes Me Happy Day. Massage-profession powerhouses, Lynda Solien-Wolfe (Vice President of Massage and Spa at Performance Health) and CG Funk (Global Director of Funk Consulting), founded this new initiative in partnership with the Global Wellness Institute. Says Solien-Wolfe:
“The Global Massage Makes Me Happy Day will be a great celebration of the happiness massage brings to millions of people throughout the year and throughout the globe. Human beings need positive touch and we are committed to supporting the work of massage therapists and their professional growth. We look forward to the day massage therapy will be fully understood and honored as the powerful healing modality it is.”
The initiative was started to “celebrate the healing powers of massage therapy and promote its benefits through research and education, advocacy and global awareness,” according to the Global Wellness Institute’s website.
Their listed goals for the initiative are to:
- Create a global platform and rallying cry around “Massage Makes Me Happy.”
- Consolidate existing clinical research and support new research for deeper integration of massage into healthcare and wellness practices.
- Stimulate advocacy by encouraging storytelling of the benefits of massage through massage therapists, wellness and spa professionals, consumers, caregivers, educators and more.
- Promote and market massage therapy and massage therapy careers worldwide.
Now those are some admirable goals we can all get behind!
So, what should you do?
Here are some things the Massage Makes Me Happy folks say you should do as a practitioner to promote and celebrate Massage Makes Me Happy Day:
- Offer a discount or upgrade on massage sessions
- Create a client brochure showing how massage creates happiness
- Get together with fellow massage practitioners and share success stories
- Host an open house informational session for new clients
- Read a massage research paper and share the findings with friends and clients
- Offer massage as a charitable act – seniors, homeless shelters, etc.
- Share information about Global Massage Makes Me Happy Day on social media
- Work with local city or chamber to host an informational event for the public
- Host a parent/child massage event and teach them some massage techniques
- Post a video of a client’s happiness massage story on social media
- Take a CE class and learn something new
- Schedule a series of massage sessions for yourself
- Distribute a press release to local publications
- Spread the word about Global Massage Makes Me Happy Day and the initiative to family, friends, and colleagues
At minimum, go to the Massage Makes Me Happy tool kit, download the Benefits & Research flyer, and hang both pages up in your office today. Then go back and explore the rest of the tool kit to decide how else you can promote and celebrate this event that was made just for you!
Or, simply copy and paste this list of benefits from the tool kit into an email, or your newsletter, and send it out to your list to promote the day:
How does massage help achieve happiness?
Some of the many benefits of massage and its role as a tool to help achieve happiness include:
- Pain Management – Studies indicate that touch therapies can help manage pain, resulting in greater well-being.
- Emotional Balance – Massage reduces the harmful stress hormone, cortisol, while increasing serotonin and dopamine, instantly improving mood.
- De-stress – Managing stress leads to a happier life.
- Productivity – Lowering stress levels can improve efficiency and time management.
According to the American Massage Therapy Association:
- A study discovered women with stage 1 and stage 2 breast cancer benefited from regular massage therapy sessions.
- Research has shown that military veterans experienced significant reductions of depression and physical pain following massage therapy.
- Massage therapy is being recommended by some health professionals as a safer and drug-free alternative to pain management.
For more information and details on the research behind this initiative, please visit: The Touch Research Institute, University of Miami (www.miami.edu/touch-research) or The Global Wellness Institute (www.wellnessevidence.com).