Energy of Spring

The energy of spring is one of emergence.
Of feeling ready to get out and do things.
Things are taking shape
You’re getting out into the world again - with all the projects, lists, and NEWNESS!

Push up and through and surround yourself with those to support you.

Push up and through and surround yourself with those to support you.

Since I dig energy in all it’s vibrations (fascinating creature, Energy), I feel the excitement and fruitfulness, but also the opposing, less loved feelings of distraction, avoidance, and general uncomfortableness of the season.

Spring is about emergence, and also about shedding old skin and letting go to make room for the new growth and transformation.
Just like seeds shedding the shell as the sprout comes out, humans need to shed what’s no longer working and shift perspective and walk into that cramped space of uncomfortableness.

If not, those unwanted energies may show up as indecision, procrastination, constipation, headaches, TMJ, a pain in the neck or butt, premature failure, and even lethargy when getting up in the morning because the day is too daunting. (This is different than depression or chronic fatigue or a serious illness.)

Maybe we just need a simple change in routine - that yoga at 6am too much, what’s another time you can practice?
Or maybe there’s a bigger change we resist because we like our comfort zone?
Whatever is happening for you - Those new intentions need a space to crawl into to germinate and flourish.

Whatever it is, we cannot avoid the change that comes with the spring emergence.
It’s a total package.
Yin/yang, dark/light.. there isn’t one without the other.
(It’s one of the Mystical Laws - the Law of Polarity)

What do you think? I’d love to know.

 

Lisa Kai is a licensed bodywork therapist in Chicago Illinois. She specializes in transformational bodywork including Lomi Lomi and Visionary Craniosacral. This blog contains her insights on bodywork and everyday tips for practicing Aloha for the body, mind, and spirit. Lisa also practices Aloha, is a nature loving tikiphile, digs jazz (well, all types of music really!), double dips her veggies, is an artist, and embraces change.


 

#Me Too... a bodywork therapists view

I AM really not one to jump in. I didn't want to post anything. But my soul kept prodding me to, so here goes...

With everything going on around women and all different types of abuse and harassment being outed, it's time to say something from my industry's point of view. From a woman who's been in the business for almost 20 years...

My soul sister, Liz, says I am not like many women. I stand up for myself, sometimes loudly, and defend my tribe fiercely. No qualms about it.

On that note, I feel I need to say a bit from a bodywork/massage therapists point of view.

There are many things not being said by my fellow body workers.

Things we only dare talk about among ourselves...

All women know what it is like to be harassed in some way. The seedy look from a stranger, being followed home from school, men you don't know grabbing your breasts. (Yes, this last one actually happened at a bar on New Years Eve when I was young - WT?? My boyfriend at the time was not too happy with that either.)

As a bodywork therapist, I have had my share of obnoxious, misogynistic, entitled behavior from the opposite sex. In my case - men.
And so have most of my friends (male and female), who are all legitimate therapists.
This is some of what we have encountered and shared with each other. It doesn't matter if it was when we worked at spas, yoga studios, or on our own. It happens everywhere. But that does not mean it is acceptable or okay.


Phone harassment:

Usually it starts with a phone call with some heavy breathing as they are asking to book an appointment.
Sometimes, I can actually feel that there is sweating going on on the other end of the phone.

There is usually a need to get in for an appointment right away.
Like in an hour - or at 11pm that evening.?!

If we do not give them an appointment right away, we really begin to get harassed.
Again, this is just on the phone
-

*Why not?
*Another therapist has done it for me before.
*I don't want to wait a week.
*Do I get anything extra if I wait a week?
*Am I going to be naked? Are you going to be naked?
*I have a foot fetish, do you wear socks or go barefoot?
*Let me tell you about this blind therapist I had in the Netherlands...
*I like my gracilis worked all the way to the top. (FYI - a very intimate muscle that goes up the thigh into the groin. - and this guy was no athlete.)
*One guy even asked me who I thought I was not providing a service for him right away - so I told him who I was - my name.

Table harassment/ non-verbal harassment while on the table:

*I have had men when I worked at a spa leave the sheets off their body and climb on top of the blanket so they have to stand up naked to get under them when I come in. Not just once, but the same guy, on numerous occasions. (Finally told the owner - never saw him again.)

*Leaving the sheets half off, or completely off the body, so we can see the body naked when we walk in the room.

*Gyrating of the hips while glutes are being worked on. Or just in general - gyrating of the hips during a massage. (Come on, as if we don't know what that's all about.)

*A friend had someone actually ejaculate onto the sheets at a prestigious spa downtown after being told many times what massage was about - this guy was not allowed in the spa ever again.


Verbal harassment in person and even during a session:

Is there a special place I can put my underwear?

Do you have a lock on the door?

Men who plead to not be draped before, and during a session. (It's the law in Illinois.)

Oh, (disappointment) since you do Thai bodywork, I thought you'd be Asian and provide "more".

Great job beautiful, but can you work my abdomen deeper and lower.

Hey sweetie, I like it fast and deep.

I am looking for a sensual release.

Overly touching - lots of hand grabbing. ("I can't control what my hands are doing.")

My therapist in Hawaii was almost Tantric. ( I will not even go here. This really annoys us.)

When do I get to give you a massage?

I like to take a shower after my session. Want to join me?

"You are so great with your hands" -  said with an knowing smile on the face.


I believe you get the point.

There is a lot of shame and embarrassment around this among most therapists. I am comfortable "standing up" for myself in a straightforward and graceful (hopefully) manner and very grateful to have an excellent support group around me to be able to talk about some of what happens. - And a fantastic boyfriend who just listens and also shakes his head - no no no....
I understand that people need to be seen in certain ways, but the majority of us have professional boundaries and do not go there.
And yes, some of it sounds funny and cute right now, but there is no excuse or reasoning behind this kind of behavior.

Inappropriate behavior is inappropriate behavior.

At this point, I am not sure I have much more to add except thank you for hearing me and my colleagues at this powerful point in history.

Mahalo Nui Loa,
with love, Lisa

 

Lisa Kai is a licensed bodywork therapist in Chicago Illinois. She specializes in transformational bodywork including Lomi Lomi and Visionary Craniosacral. This blog contains her insights on bodywork and everyday tips for practicing Aloha for the body, mind, and spirit. Lisa also practices Aloha, is a nature loving tikiphile, digs jazz (well, all types of music really!), double dips her veggies, is an artist, and embraces change.


 

Be Empowered

I want to write about something that has me experiencing anger and frustration - the Snake Oil Salesman.

You know this one. He, or She, comes in many forms. And at some point, we have all been their victims, whether we like to admit this or not.

Talk that is intended to impress others but is insincere or deceiving;  and also  Someone who sells, promotes, or is a general proponent of some valueless remedy, or solution.

Talk that is intended to impress others but is insincere or deceiving; and also
Someone who sells, promotes, or is a general proponent of some valueless remedy, or solution.

Their advice is often cryptic in nature and serves to do nothing but disempower you. (And fatten their wallets!)
This is such a disservice to us. Me, you, and particularly anyone that pays for their services regularly.

The disservice lies in this: People come to you for assistance in their lives. In all ways: physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
In seeking this service, they are feeling vulnerable, possibly scared about a future outcome in their lives, and may be in a place where they are not facing some truth about the consequences of a choice they have, or have not made yet. Sometimes, they are even in a place of such self-doubt and low self esteem that they feel shattered with no clear vision of how to start putting the pieces back together for themselves. Perhaps they are even mentally ill!

Taking advantage of a "fragile" person by handing out metaphor ridden, false, and purposefully fearful messages in the guise of advice is unconscionable to me. 

Why do people seek out, and keep on going to the "snake oil salesmen" repeatedly?
I can only surmise that they are not embracing a challenge they are facing, and not wanting to actually step up to plate and commit to change. Perhaps they want someone else to do it for them, to tell them what to do.

I have compassion for these seekers. There is much fear around change and self-empowerment in our culture. We are never taught how to take a leap of faith or about innovative thinking outside the box, or most importantly, how to look inside ourselves for the quiet space where insights come from.

In the long run, no one knows how to shift your life more than you. People can give you advice and tools to assist you that bring additional benefits to your life, but you still have to figure things out for yourself. (aka: Where does that belief stem from? Does it still serve me now, as it did when I created it? Does it keep me a prisoner or victim for other people to control or bully me? ETC.)

So, that all being pondered and written, here's a tool I use when I take a class, or go to a different practitioner for a service.
After the session, I take a moment and check in with myself: Does what they say to me make me feel like a dark cloud is looming around me and that I am on alert in fight or flight mode, or do I feel better, with more insights to move forward with more awareness?  Does of any of what they are saying help me in ANY way? (I don't discount raising my spirits, that's generally a good first step for me :) )

Learning a simple self-empowerment tool might take a few times, but don't beat yourself up about it. We, as human beings learn by experience and trial and error.
None of us are perfect and learn life lessons the first time around!

To growth and moving forward.
Sat Nam, Lisa Kai

 

Lisa Kai is a licensed bodywork therapist in Chicago Illinois. She specializes in transformational bodywork including Lomi Lomi and Craniosacral. This blog contains her insights on bodywork and everyday tips for practicing Aloha for the body, mind, and spirit. Lisa also practices Aloha, is a nature loving tiki freak, digs jazz, double dips her veggies, is an artist, and embraces change.