We see many clients who come into their initial evaluation and myofascial release treatment sessions wondering how things will go. Wondering if working with us will help them finally get their life back, finally allow them to return to the activities they enjoy and haven’t been able to do for a long time, sometimes years. We see clients who wonder how long it will take and how often they will need to come and how much it will cost. And we see others who just don’t know how they will be able to make things work.
Whatever your situation, we are here to help you make the best decision for you at this time, whether that is working with the Release Works Myofascial Therapy team or not. Here are some questions we have found helpful as people work their way through how to get started toward the change they want to see in their lives.
1. What do you want?
This is an important question to get really clear on. Many, many people tell us they want to get out of pain. Their short term and long term goals are to have less pain and then have no pain. But, that doesn’t really get at the heart of what someone is truly working toward. I’ll be blunt. It isn’t really about pain relief. If that pain goes away, then what??
This was a difficult concept for me to understand when I first started seeing a myofascial therapist years ago. I did just want my headache to go away. Along with the throbbing and stabbing and aching and tightening I felt in the rest of my body. I thought if the pain would just go away, things would be so much better. Maybe they would have been, but focusing on the absence of a thing didn’t give me anything specific to work toward. It can be so much more helpful to have a picture of oneself in a healthier, happier state.
Pointing the mind and body in the direction you want to go can be a powerful motivator.
I have found there is always something deeper, something that being in pain is preventing you from doing or experiencing or enjoying. For me, part of what I wanted was to be able to enjoy my family again. Be able to travel again. Be able to enjoy the company of friends again. Many people describe it as simply wanting to get their life back. Or being sick and tired of being sick and tired. Some goals are as simple as being able to sleep through the night. Those also would have been accurate descriptions of things I wanted.
Whatever the motivating factor is, it is important to know why this is the time for you to get help. What are you working toward that will make a difference in your life? If the initial answer is “pain relief,” perhaps consider, what will be different when <that pain> is no longer there? What is the first thing you will go out and do? What have you been putting off, thinking it will be too much?
The answers to these sorts of questions will get you much closer to a sense of what you are really working toward, what it is that will be meaningful to regain in your life. Whatever those things are, if they are meaningful to you, they are meaningful to us. Our goal is to help you reach yours.
That being said, the next question to consider is this. . .
2. What is likely to get in the way of your reaching your goals?
This can be a fun question to explore as you are making decisions about your health. We see a lot of clients who feel like they just haven’t found the right thing to “fix” them yet. Many have tried a lot of different things, including surgery, medication, talk therapy, physical therapy, cupping, acupuncture, naturopath and holistic medicine, and rest – and when they still can’t play on the floor with their kids or work an entire work day without a migraine, or golf 18 holes, or take a road trip without feeling wiped out for days afterward – it is easy to blame the modality for not working.
There can be some truth to that. Maybe you just haven’t found the right thing. Maybe you haven’t found the right practitioner. Maybe.
But again, it is important to be completely honest here. And for most of us, that means recognizing the role we each play in our own suffering. I have heard more than one client say, “I felt better when I was doing my stretching and exercises every day. But I stopped doing them. And now <that pain> is back again. Can you help?”
It make me wonder, if something was helping you feel better, why did you stop doing it?
But I digress. What is likely to get in the way of you achieving your goals?
We hear some fun answers to this question. One client admitted quite happily that Netflix is a huge distraction for her. (It is for me, too. . .) Another acknowledged she just doesn’t want to have to do things outside her sessions with us. Personally, I have a tendency to prioritize myself and my own care last. That is after a family with kids and a husband, a job, the dishes, the shopping, the bills. The list could go on.
I have a less than helpful to me habit of putting myself last. I also tend to be lazy. When I get home at the end of the day, feeling tired and hungry, the last thing I want to do is lay on a ball and do some myofascial self treatment. Maybe that is just me.
It is worth exploring, though, the habits that tend to get in your way when it comes to taking time and care for yourself. You are likely very familiar with them 🙂
Which brings us to the third question.
3. How do you think things will go if you don’t do something?
We call this taking a walk down a hypothetical future path. If you were to project forward, 6 months to a year, how do you see things going if you continue on as you are? This isn’t a question meant to scare you. It is more about getting a reality check with yourself.
I was recently asked to consider, if I project forward a year, what will I regret not having learned? What will I regret not having done? If I see myself a year from now, what qualities, experiences, and understandings will I be glad I took the time to cultivate and develop within myself?
They were sobering questions. I tend toward being a creature of habit, find something that seems to provide a modicum of okay-ness and comfortability in life and don’t stray too far from it. At least, that is my default path of least resistance when I choose to approach life with less than intentional living and attention to my needs and wants.
When I am paying attention to my own growth and development, I realize there are very much capacities, experiences, and understandings I would like to develop within myself. That I would feel sad, looking back a year from now, to realize I could have done something and chose not to.
That is the type of question this one is. How do you think it will go if you do nothing? Or continue on as you are? If you were to project forward, 6 months – a year from now, what capacities, experiences, and understandings will you be glad you took the time and made the effort to develop within yourself?
And finally, the last question.
4. What do you do now?
The answers you discover in yourself may be enough to move forward. If not, and you find you are ready for more direct help, you can start here.
Still not sure? We offer all new patients a complimentary 30-minute consultation either on the telephone or at our Salt Lake City Myofascial Release clinic, to explore the best way forward for your specific set of symptoms and explain how we would approach your treatment – all before any financial investment on your part, so there are zero risks.