Massage, or touch is an oldest, most instinctual form of healing. To celebrate or commiserate, we reach out to physically touch one another to convey our deepest emotions those beyond words. Touch is the language of feeling rather than thinking, and when done with care and compassion, it can be deeply restorative for many emotional and physical conditions. This article is an introduction to some self care massage techniques and those for loved one’s too so that you can be empowered to use the healing power of touch in your daily life for everyday issues.
Healing touch begins with the intention of the giver. It is often the energy of the massage therapist that really determines a good massage from a great one. And when it comes to self-care or treating a loved one, the first step is always to connect to the person you are treating before starting the treatment. Learning how to touch your partner, or loved one with compassionate touch can help transform your relationship. Whether it’s with your baby, child, husband, and best friend, touch is a beautiful way of expressing and showing your love ultimately.
Connect With Respect
This is the most important aspect of touch. Respectful touch is an expression of love. Before you do any touch, always ask permission. Breathe in deeply a couple of times as you first lay your hands on yourself or another. The concept of ‘Namaste’ can help you to align yourself to the right energy. Namaste essentially means acknowledging the soul in one soul by another soul, an understanding and respect of the essence of the person and connection to them as the same kind of being, a being of love and light. When we connect in this way we are dissolving the ego aspect of our psyche and allowing for the language of touch to unfold organically, intuitively, and so more effectively. Touch is always about feeling, little thought should be present and it’s a great exercise to improve your intuition in that sense.
Know The Pace
Now that you have connected to yourself or your partner, this should inform you of the kind of touch needed by that person at the moment. Generally, if someone is feeling low, sad, depressed or anxious slow, deep, slow touch is felt to be reassuring, nurturing, and calming. But if someone is lethargic, fatigued, or even angry, quick paced, light touch can help raise the spirits and provide energy to boost yourself or your partner into a different state.
Common Issues You Can Treat With The Massage Techniques:
For you or another, I have found
- Vigorously ‘scratching-without-nails’ all over the head to be extremely effective in lifting the energy off a stress or caffeine headache.
- You can then massage gently into their temples and around the back of the ear.
- Use your palms and/or fingers to spread outwards from the centre of the forehead to the sides, slowly and gently. Repeat several times.
- Massaging the feet is helpful as it draws the energy away from the head.
2. Period Pain
- Lie them face down with a hot water bottle or heating pad on their lower abdomen/low back depending on where pain is. Place hands over the low back and coccyx and press down firmly but gently.
- Gently rock them back and forth for 6-7 minutes or longer. Then massage down the legs towards feet, pressing rhythmically like a cat working your way down to the feet.
- Pressing acupressure points Spleen 6 and 10 can also be helpful.
- Pressing and massaging acupressure point Heart 7 (also known as ‘spirit gate’ or ‘Shenmen’ in Chinese) firmly for several minutes whilst taking deep breaths is really helpful in calming panicky feelings.
- Tapping and massaging around the sternum and chest is also helpful for shifting difficult emotions.
- Have your person lie down on something comfortable and make sure they are warm. Get them to take several slow deep breaths. Connect to them and gently place one hand on their lower abdomen and the other one on the top of their head, and then gently press down at the same time. Hold firmly but with no tension or force. Align your breathing with theirs and encourage them to keep taking deep slow long breaths. This is a deeply grounding technique.
- Get your person to lie down on their front, comfortable, and warm of course. Then connect, place your hands gently on the low back, intend to send loving energy to the person you’re treating and begin rocking them gently back and forth. Do not grip with your fingers but move with the body encouraging natural movement and you can up the pace depending on the person and their state and fragility. Repeat this for a minimum of four minutes. This rocking motion, just as when we are babies, stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, which encourages deep relaxation of the entire body and mind. This is very nurturing and supportive.
- With your person lying face down, cover them with a soft blanket and tuck it in under their shoulders. Use your fingers to rake and stroke the entire persons body in slow downward motion towards the feet. Do this thoroughly over the back, down the legs, and arms. It feels wonderful and like having the weight of the world lifted off you.
- Holding a special acupressure point called Kidney 1 on the feet is especially helpful for grounding a persons energy, and calming them. This is a great one to use with kids and can be incorporated into the above-mentioned techniques.
- Never underestimate the power of a good hug! Holding someone’s body close to yours with love and acceptance can rejuvenate another’s or your mood and energy dramatically. If you’re not sure what words to use, reach out and offer a hug or even a hand placed gently on the heart with the right intentions, space on their back or chest.