Massage & Bodywork

September/October 2009

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Page 9 of 139

editor's note FROM ME TO YOU CHERRY PICKING Thanks to life's twists and turns, I spent lots of time in Western Colorado with my folks this spring and summer. They're the perfect team: my father works from sunup to sundown tending a huge garden and overseeing 150 fruit trees. Mom picks up from there, smiling when Dad covers her kitchen counter with buckets of fresh produce ready to be washed, prepared, and enjoyed. Of all the produce, cherries are the stars. Since the turn of the century, they've thrived so when we moved onto the place 40 years ago, cherry buyers started showing up in the wee hours of the morning ready to pick. Times change. Thanks to the liability of having exuberant city folks teetering on our ladders, we now hire pickers. But the sense of community and appreciation for agriculture is still there. The end of this year's cherry harvest happened to be the day Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals launched We're already enjoying the bountiful response as talented, enthusiastic massage therapists sign up and begin to make this network their own. As of press time (two weeks after launch), we have more than 1,500 members and the site is growing. Have you joined this party yet? Those of us who are into social networking share the same challenge: how to manage the concentric circles of our lives. Massageprofessionals. com gives us all a place to connect, discuss, and socialize with a community of bodyworkers and those who care about what we do. Although it's powered by ABMP, it's nondenominational—everyone's welcomed and encouraged to participate. In fact, you can form your own groups on the site, too. It's a great place to start if you've been hesitant to join Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace, Twitter, or other such sites. Here, you're among peers. You can learn from each other and brainstorm how to negotiate today's business climate, as well as the diverse bodywork field. Then, you can establish a presence on the more all-purpose sites above where your clients "live." While you're there, be sure to join our ABMP groups. I hear people say that a sense of community is gone from our world, but I don't agree. I think it's just shifting and those who aren't online are in danger of being left behind. Online social networking may not be as quaint as the corner coffee shop, but it does allow you to make friends and learn from those around the globe. Just like picking through the cherries, you may have to sort through the selection of practitioners and groups to make the right connections for the most tasty of rewards. But even with minimal effort, you'll be thrilled with your harvest. So please "friend" me; I guarantee you very few pits. LESLIE A. YOUNG, Editor in Chief 8 massage & bodywork september/october 2009

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