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Building Connections with Massage Clients

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massage seattle dreamclinicMany massage therapists worry about providing pleasant service, but clients can be more nervous than we are.  After all, it can feel very vulnerable, lying there disrobed on a table for an hour, having a therapist working hard on them.  Some clients even worry that they’re somehow inconveniencing or overworking their therapist.  This concern comes out in questions such as, “how many people have you seen today?” or kind statements like, “it must be hard to do this job.” One of the best remedies to ease your clients’ anxiety is to overtly ask the client to come see you again. This reassures them that not only do you not feel put out by your work, but you enjoy it and look forward to it and to building a good rapport with them. It’s important to keep in mind that, beyond good clinical massage technique, clients are also looking for a connection or relationship.  It can be easy to overlook that critical aspect and think that you can let your massage speak for itself, but a few simple words to the effect that you’d like to see the client again makes clear that you are inviting that connection. A lot of therapists will use words something like “It was good to work with you” or “I hope you come back to see me again.” While this is better than saying nothing, it is very passive and doesn’t really speak for your genuine desire to have the client come back.

Phrasing that shows your active engagement with the relationship is more effective. For example, “I really enjoyed working with you. Will you be in again?” or “I loved working with you. I’d like to see you again.” goes a lot further in having the client feel confident that you genuinely would like to work with them again. If they had a particular concern that brought them in that day, you can even include that, such as “I’d love a chance to do more work on that shoulder. Are you able to come again next week?”

If you’re not asking your clients to come see you again, definitely start. If you are, check your phrasing and go from the passive “hope you return” to the active “I would love to work with you again” to better ease your clients’ worry and assure them that you’d like to have them back, again and again.

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