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Taking Care of Yourself--and Others

Cathy Christensen October 2012 issue of Skin Inc. magazine

Several years ago, I was overwhelmed. I was seeking balance, but the term “work-life balance” isn’t big enough for how off-kilter I was feeling. It was work and life and kids and friends and expectations and aging and changes and EVERYTHING! I’m not sure if you’ve ever hit this point, but it was time for something to give. I realized that I didn’t want to be a person who only discovered I wanted to be happy in my life after it was too late to do anything about it.

After much introspection and prayer, I was finally advised by a person in my spiritual life to remove myself from the chaos, and take some time to be quiet and breathe and find peace. At first, just the thought of this seemed inconceivable. I had an unrelentingly busy life with young kids, a full-time job and myriad other obligations; where would I find the time? Where would I go? I was uncomfortable with the idea. But in my current state of hopelessness, I decided to try it and started taking time out of my day visiting the prayer garden at my church. There, I just sit and listen to nature, breathe, meditate, read uplifting books and grow my spiritual self. This has changed my life. I am more capable of helping, and I’m a better person for all those I touch with my life because I’m taking care of myself in a positive way. This leads me to the question: Are you taking care of yourself?

The wellness way

Stress is a toxic and undeniable poison in today’s world. Your clients suffer from the effects of stress, and you see it every day. They come to you for skin care, of course, but they also come seeking relief, human touch, communication and understanding. And they get it from you. But how are you taking care of yourself in order to be the givers that you need to be?

In “What is Wellness?”, Lila Shanti Pettyjohn discusses holistic wellness methods that you can help clients implement, providing a healthier way of life that is so evident on the skin. Skin care, as well as nutrition, stress-reduction and sleep, are all crucial to a client’s (and a skin care professional’s) well-being, and if you help them fulfill these needs, you will hold a place in their hearts—and on their priority lists—for years to come.

And it is in taking care of yourself that you can take care of others. “Welcoming the Disabled Spa-goer” by Naomi Servisson, discusses how disability-friendly and American Disability Act (ADA)-compliant skin care facilities are on the rise, meeting the need of the 19%—and growing—of Americans who are disabled. Will you be taking measures in the near future to join the ranks of skin care facilities who are making life better for disabled clients? Serving the needs of every type of client is both good for them and good for business.

Be thankful

Although I still have my off days, I am better able to manage my life when I find time to focus on what’s important and take time to be thankful for that every day. As skin care professionals, you make the world a better place through your work—one client at a time. In order to do this to the very best of your ability, take time to nurture yourself, breathe, focus on your blessings, eat right, and laugh loudly and often ... and wellness and happiness will be yours to share.

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