Ten year anniversary
Hello out there,
This is a short 4-minute read marking quite a significant milestone. I ummed and ahhed over whether my personal milestone was worthy of a newsletter to you. And then I thought, ah heck Claire, just write it! After all, this newsletter answers what almost every client asks me when we meet for the first time, which is: have you always been in massage? And, how did you get into it?
As you'll already have gleaned from the subject of this email, this month marks TEN WHOLE YEARS since I took the plunge, left the City and started setting up my massage therapy business.
"Taking the plunge" sounds way more brave and courageous than I actually was, so let's be clear on what actually happened in October 2011. As is often the case in life, a series of events collided to give me the push I needed, including the week where I found out I needed IVF one day and got made redundant the next (in Starbucks no less, and I bought the coffee). Throughout 2011 I had also been in massage training and I was just weeks away from taking my exams. So, coincidence or fate?
By November 2011, I had passed my BTEC diploma and had acquired a second hand couch. I didn't have a business name, I didn't have a website and no one used social media so I started out with word-of-mouth support from friends, former work colleagues, local dog walkers and the Cambria Choir. By January 2012, things were up and running but I didn't become a Best until the September of that year so not sure I had a business name or a website for ages. Still, word got out and business repeated for which, dear work colleagues, friends, choristers and dog walkers, I am very grateful.
Before massage, I graduated in French so ran a kids' club in the southern Alps and translated nuclear power plant bids in Paris, after which I taught English in Polish universities and returned to London in 1998 where I spent well over a decade in headhunting. Secretly, I had always wanted to be a doctor or a physio but went completely off piste with A-level choices.
Ten years on and I feel as content as I did when I first started and I feel blessed to do a job I love around the son I was lucky to have. I have amazing and loyal clients, caring and wise industry colleagues, have had fantastic experiences and have completed plenty of fascinating training courses. I've massaged with a 6-month bump, along the back row of a Radio 4 audience, spent time in a dissection laboratory and, in 2019, achieved my dream (remember the young desire to be in a medical setting) of massaging in a hospital - and for this I feel really proud of myself. (see: www.fullcirclefund.org.uk)
To mark my ten year anniversary, I've been mulling over a quite major retrain within the complementary therapy field but for now, and post pandemic, I'm taking things slowly. Instead, my plan is to invest 10% of my revenues from now until October 2022 in shorter training courses that I think will be of benefit to you. Also, I want to consolidate my hospital experience and this year's continued oncology massage training by developing the cancer massage side of my business.
I think that when you feel lucky, that luck needs sharing around. I have already given hundreds of hours befriending elderly patients at King's and now give my time by massaging in oncology and haematology at St George's Hospital, so more time is not an option right now. Therefore, I've decided to take opportunities each month for random acts of kindness in the local community, starting with paying forward someone else's lunch at Loughborough Junction's community cafe - The Platform Cafe. (www.theplatformcafe.org).
So, there you have it - ten years and a potted history of me! If you've got this far, thank you for reading and a very genuine, heartfelt thank you for coming to me for massage. As ever, a small business always appreciates kind word-of-mouth and google reviews.....so if you feel inclined, thank you!
I wish you well and hope to see you again soon.