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Massage Today
November, 2013, Vol. 13, Issue 11

Healing Intention: What is Your State of Mind?

By Marie-Christine Lochot, LMT

Most massage therapists and bodyworkers choose the profession out of desire to help other people feel better. We believe that by using our hands and applying the techniques we have learned, we can help people heal from injuries, get stress relief and attain better health. This is conscious, mindful and determined; this is a healing intention.

Healing intention is better known when it applies to one person desiring to improve his or her health. The past few years, many books and movies have been made regarding that concept: "The Law of Attraction," Shortcut to a Miracle and more recently, "The Secret," to name a few. They are all based on Quantum Physics principles. "Through the study of the quantum realm ... science has now learned that: 1) We live in a universe that is 'an undivided whole;' 2) We are one with it and part of it; 3) It is a world of potentiality rather than predictability; and 4) We actually participate in the operation of this universe – it responds to us." – Michael C. Rann and Elizabeth Rann Arrott from Shortcut to a Miracle.

According to those principles, we can have an impact on our own life by projecting a goal. When I got interested in quantum physics, the most useful explanation I found was that we are projecting holograms of ourselves, or how we perceive ourselves, into the universe and that is what comes back to us. It's the famous, "Be careful to what you are wishing for, because it might happen." Therefore, a healing intention requires using a voluntary thought process that establishes belief, expectation and hope that one's health and balance will be regained.

What happens when that intention is held by a massage therapist or bodyworker? Which state of mind do we need to have before, during and after a session?

healing intention - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark Getting ready for a session as we hold a healing intention, requires the therapist to be mentally prepared. To enhance this belief, we want to develop awareness and set a careful intention. One way to reach those goals is our own healing, making sure that we are at peace with our self and our inner world. Another way is to participate in mindfulness programs or meditation.

When the client arrives, listening to her or his desired objectives is paramount; our healing intention has to match what they are looking for in term of the results, even if we had another idea. It cannot be our agenda. I have clients who sometimes only want to address their stress and not their tight shoulders. My healing intention then is to help them relax their mind and balance their energy, even if I know how much their shoulders could benefit from more focused work.

As we sit at the head of the table and touch our client for the first time, our state of mind should be a hope that some healing will happen, belief that the body will guide us, compassion for the human being on the table and acceptance of the results. Be careful not to confuse intention with expectation. This is one of the keys of intentions or manifestations.

We also want to be grounded and centered. A good way to ground ourselves is to plant our feet firmly on the floor and imagine that roots come out of them to sink into mother earth. Being centered comes from grounding and being in a peaceful place. Lastly, I believe that we need to be humble; our mission is to be of service, we are not in charge.

During the session, presence is essential. If distracting thoughts come to mind, acknowledge them, then gently push them away and refocus onto the client's body. Awareness is another key element. As we proceed with strokes, we want to pay attention to the body's reactions and the feeling of the tissues under our skilled hands. I always try to listen to my hands and fingers as they seem to know best when to linger, which depth to go to and which rhythm to adopt. The unwinding of a muscle and the client's sighs of relief often confirm that it was the right approach.

Paying attention to our breath is also part of awareness. Slow and deep indicates that we are focused and relaxed. A shallow breath sends us the signal that we are tensed and need to relax our diaphragm. To accomplish that, I have found it useful to visualize a yellow or green light in my solar plexus. After a few minutes, discreet yawns, provoked by strong contractions of the diaphragm, are indicators that the quality of my breathing is improving.

Being quiet is a must. How can we be centered and aware if we are having a conversation? I am not talking about feedback from the client, but about mundane talk. Finally, empathy, gentleness and kindness are necessary cornerstones of a healing journey.

At the end of the session, gratitude is in order. Let's be grateful that the client trusted us with their healing needs, that we were there to meet those needs and that the body's wisdom did its magic. It probably went the way it was supposed to, even if sometimes we don't see it right away.

The following quote from Mahatma Gandhi is on the wall in my treatment room so I never forget my healing intentions and the sacredness of the work: "Work with the hands is the apprenticeship of honesty. May the work of your hands be a sign of gratitude and reverence to the human condition." May you have successful healing journeys with your clients.

Marie-Christine Lochot is a licensed massage therapist, energy bodyworker and educator. Owner of Massage Montclair in New Jersey, she has been a member of the AMTA since 1994 and is nationally certified by NCBTMB. With specialties in Swedish massage, massage for people affected by cancer and energy healing, Marie-Christine coaches and teaches energy healing to laypeople, massage professionals and in the corporate environment. With a diverse background in management and accounting, Marie-Christine also teaches small business and private practice organization. She can be reached at


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