Solving induStry ProblemS “We spend so much time in the spa industry as health and wellness care-givers, at the end of the day we usually remain exhausted and barely able to consider the concept of self-care. Just a few simple steps implemented throughout the day can improve the overall quality of our lives...” associated with higher order brain functions such as awareness, concentration and decision-making – becomes thicker. The connection between the amygdala and the rest of the brain gets weaker, while the connections between areas associated with attention and concentration get stronger. We literally become more “thoughtful” beings through meditation, whether we realize it or not. According to many ancient Eastern disciplines—like yoga from India and Chi Gong from China—the center of our body that dissipates power is our spine. Learning three simple moves to do in the morning and evening to promote spinal health will promote general wellbeing because our spine takes the brunt of our day’s stress, whether we spend it standing at a treatment table or sitting at a desk. TRY THIS! Practice the breathing tip above for a minute or TRY THIS! Sit tall in a comfortable chair, barefoot. Under two. To free yourself of worrying about time, set an alarm for your right foot, slowly move a golf ball under all sections of three minutes. As you become more proﬁcient with the your foot. Make large strokes and circles to start, then make practice, you can extend this up to 30 minutes. continue smaller patterns. Wherever you notice a sore or tight spot, with the breathing technique, this time adding the aﬃrma- try to linger there for about 10 seconds, adding direct tions “I-am-love” on the inhalation series. on the exhalation, pressure. Try to dedicate three to ﬁve minutes for each foot. repeat to yourself “let-it-go.” Try to train your brain to focus before work, this will prepare our muscles to support and on just one syllable at a time. When your mind wanders, balance us in standing and gait patterns. After work, when gently notice that and, without judgement, bring your mind we can sit for about ten minutes, this will allow our muscles back to the meditative assignment. over time, you will ﬁnd to recover, remove stressful muscular knots and promote that this becomes easier and will leave you with a feeling of ﬂexibility in our feet before bed. refreshing awareness and rejuvenation, sort of like a mini spa treatment for your mind! anatomy Personal self-care for our anatomy comes in the metaphor of a tree with many branches. Some of these more important branches include our muscles, bones and organs; some include important body parts and areas like our spine and feet; still others include our feeding power center, our stomach. Since many ways exist to promote self-care in these areas, I propose you begin with simple steps for promoting healthy feet and spines because the majority of spa staffers spend more working hours standing than sitting. 30 PULSE ■ January/February 2018 Taking care of ourselves in the spa industry seems like a priority that often finds itself at the bottom of our action-item list. We spend so much time in the spa industry as health and wellness care-givers, at the end of the day we usually remain exhausted and barely able to consider the concept of self-care. Just a few simple steps implemented throughout the day can improve the overall quality of our lives and truly become beacons of wellness for our customers. n clicK Here for Laurence biscontini’s 4 Steps to Spinal Health.