This article passed through my inbox the other day. https://www.massagetherapycanada.com/insurance/insurers-question-value-of-massage-therapy-–-a-signal-of-changes-to-come-4778 and it got me triggered, for sure. (Congratulations to the writer for getting me thinking!)
My thoughts, however, didn’t go to “What right do they have?”. Nor did I spend much time thinking about how to mobilize a grass-roots level campaign to save the massage industry as it currently exists.
The article did get me thinking about how we view purchases.
Fully enjoying it.
I think in our “Get it done” culture, we’ve lost a few things.
I remember very well a periscope I bought when I was about 10 years old. It was advertised on a box of cereal. I wanted it. It filled my mind. I seriously got preoccupied with having that periscope. I had to save up for it. Then I had to “send away” for it and wait…
And it seemed to take forever to come in the mail. But, when it did, it consumed me. I was in serious heaven. To say that I enjoyed that whole “buying experience” from beginning to end would be an understatement, for sure. The fact that I still remember it, today, some 50 years later is a testament to how much pleasure it gave me back then.
To offer a contrast, I few days back I bought a plant. I didn’t plan for it. I didn’t even start the day thinking I was going to get it. I just saw it, bought it, brought it home, and parked it in my massage room. It cost considerably more than the periscope did and having it didn’t preoccupy me, didn’t fulfill me anywhere near as much as that periscope did.
If I live for another 50 years, I doubt that I’ll feel for that plant the way that I feel now for that periscope.
So, what does this have to do with massage? Well, our massage industry has become a commodity. It’s possible to buy a massage almost as easily as it is to buy a chocolate bar. And if a client needs to pay out of pocket, our insurance industry has been quite good at ensuring that we don’t feel the pinch of the purchase. We get refunded a substantial portion of the massage quickly.
And that somehow bothers me.
What’s wrong here?
We don’t feel the experience. We’ve lost that. The anticipation, the thinking that goes into saving for it, the search for that perfect therapist, the post-massage “savouring feeling”. I think we’ve lost all that.
We’ve lost all of that when it comes to many things (and people) in our life. And that’s the true sadness. The planning, the anticipation, the having, the savouring, the remembering. Gone.
I’m off to look at that plant again. I’m going to remember things. I’m going to recall what it felt like to see it. What it felt like to bring it home and look for a place for it to live. What it felt like to go looking for a stand to place it on. I’m going to savour everything about that plant. Maybe, just maybe in 50 years I will feel the same way about that plant that I felt about the periscope. If I don’t savour it now, I only have myself to look at for allowing the joy to pass unused.
I’m going to walk and feel through that experience as if I’m kissing it.
That’s the way it should be for experiences.