Starting Off On the Right Foot

By Darren Buford
[Editor's Note]

Half of all New Year’s resolutions fail. And one-third of them fail by the end of January. Why is that? Most likely, it’s because people set unrealistic expectations for success, or success isn’t clearly identified. Second, there’s little, or no, plan of action. Ever heard the phrase “Fail to plan, plan to fail”?  
So, let’s change that this year.
According to the journal Management Review, resolutions must be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound, best remembered by the acronym SMART.
So, here goes nothing:
1. In 2019, I will receive relaxation massage or bodywork once a month, because not only does it feel good, it’s an excellent path for self-care and wellness, and it directly benefits the very lives of the practitioners we work with and write about each issue. I will receive massage or bodywork and then book my next session within 24 hours of the previous session, so that I get them on a calendar, and thus, there’s more certainty of following through.
2. In 2019, I will gift two massages or bodywork treatments, one each to two different, unknowing, very deserving individuals whom I believe could benefit from its relief.  
I’ve got this. You know why? For starters, as a department at work, we have a new tradition of going as a team to receive reflexology after we complete each issue of the magazine. Six issues = six sessions. Now, hmm, what to do about those other six months? I know. I’ll get six massages from ABMP members listed on (that’s not only our public education site, but it’s also where consumers can find an ABMP practitioner with whom to book a massage or bodywork session).
In this issue of Massage & Bodywork, we hope to ring in the new year with Kristin Coverly’s take on New Year’s resolutions with her article “A–Z Guide to Improving Your Practice in 2019.” Peruse her piece and take it as a medium for the motivation to change (at least) one thing about your practice in the upcoming year. From learning to toot your own horn in your marketing to brushing up on your anatomy, Kristin has outlined 26 tips for taking your practice to the next level.
We complement her feature article with some other newness for 2019: two new authors. Let’s say hello to Amy Andrews McMaster, who will be helming the Mindful Money column, and to Ian Harvey, who’ll be covering massage and bodywork basics in our technique column called The Massage Sloth (Ian’s nickname). In a recent letter to the editor, a reader expressed that some of our material was too challenging for them. We heard your statement and responded by asking Ian to write specifically about improving technique from the ground up. Each issue, Ian will write a short column and have a brief video demonstrating his approaches to bodywork.   
In 2019, we promise to continue to strive to bring you the best of the best with each and every publication. Making a quality magazine for our readers has always been our number-one priority. We are fortunate to be working on your behalf. Here’s to a terrific 2019, and may all your goals be fulfilled.

Darren Buford

P.S. Send us your New Year’s resolutions (! What will you improve about yourself and your practice in the coming year?