Thursday, August 30, 2012

Massage Planet News by Irma Romano

Photo by Florent Courty

It has been five months in the making of Massage Planet News. My quest to find healers, body workers, and explore massage therapy techniques as well as modalities has expanded my mind and life in a way that I could never have foreseen.  Since then I have been interviewed on SoulSpeak and will be featured on Organic Soul.   My exploration has naturally evolved into the metaphysics and the deeper levels of true healing, looking at it not through my own eyes but the eyes of other talented and gifted individuals who have shared with us all their wisdom and gift of healing. My question is “How do we bring healing to our planet through touch and other holistic measures?” For me the journey began when mainstream medicine left me disappointed and my six years as a massage therapist had burnt me out physically and emotionally because I was allowing myself to be used as a means to an end in a commercial world that had no concern for real healing but rather was being motivated by the might dollar.  I had to step outside the realms of flesh and bones and into other dimensions and look at the bigger picture in order to answer my own questions.
If you’re a student studying massage therapy I can tell you from my own experience that massage therapy is much more than allowing yourself to work in a spa or clinic. In that environment you will only evolve so much competing with others for the same position and pay rate. Get a passport and use your hands to travel the world. This will allow your mind and energy to expand as you experience other ways of living, food, culture, and body work. Be creative with yourself. Write, blog, share your gift. It is the ones that share themselves with others that grow. One door opens and then another one connecting you to a world that the mind alone can never fully conceive. That is how you carve a life for yourself.

Do not make money your focus rather use it as a tool. As my friend Jessica Schab would say in her interview with Massage Planet News. If you allow money to come first you allow fear of survival to enter your realm of reality and greatly compromise your ability to heal. Static goals such as becoming famous in what you are doing or being a millionaire reduces your power to create. Instead come from a space that includes others and inspires than the details will take care of it- self. There is a greater intelligence that operates through our doing far greater than the human mind is capable of understanding. Allow it to manifest your life and step out of the way.

I was told before I began creating Massage Planet News that I needed to be Realistic and Responsible. Look around you at the people who are being both of those things. Are they experiencing joy in their life? Ask yourself more powerful questions such as “What will my life look like in ten years if I only do what is expected of me?” Don’t carry a bag of regrets in pursuit to happiness, someone else’s ideas of responsible and practical is just that. Rather look for inspiration in individual who are already living in a way that you would like for yourself. We are so much more than what is expected of us to be fitted into someone ideologies and standards. We are more than mere robots to be stuck into a box with a label so that someone else can feel comfortable about where to place you. What is success? For some it’s to have a bank account full of money so that they can start living their lives someday. For others the journey is going inside and seeing that everything they need is already there.

What is next for Massage Planet News? This journey has allowed me to write a book that will be published this fall. I have discovered that I like to story tell and explore. In order to do that I have sold all my belongings and reduced my load into three pairs of shoes and one suitcase. What I have gained in return is a wealth of information spiritually and countless of connections to people of the same resonance and heart as myself. I allow myself to travel by prioritizing my expenses or rather by living within my means so that I can finance my ventures. There are many ways to travel on a budget for more information I recommend reading The Four Hour Work Week by Timothy Ferris. My next step will be creating a documentary called Project Gaia where the whole spectrum of healing will be explored on film. In the meantime stay tuned for more interviews on be well, Namaste.
Irma Romano

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Jessica Talks about her Body Work/ Jessages & Energy Healing

Massage Planet News has asked Jessica Schab to do a video that shows us the art of body work, healing, massage, from a gifted individual. I personally had the pleasure of receiving her energy directly back in May in Toronto where we met for the first time. After spending time with Jessica I realized that the gift we have as massage therapists can only be a deep experience when the giver and receiver are open for change. The effects I personally encountered by being in contact with Jessica lasted for months after or initial meeting. I wanted to share with you the other side of body work from Jessica’s perspective, someone who is a Reiki Master and has never taken a course. Where does her gift and ability to shift someone into a higher state of consciousness come from? This is what Jessica has to say about her gift and massage. As she travels the world and discovers different massage techniques, shamanism, and the power that lies in nature I am happy to introduce you to her and her wisdom.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Abundance (by Irma Romano)

Abundance and lack is created by the mind. Whatever you think that the world is holding back from you is what you are holding back from the world. Recognition, love, assistance is lacking in your life when you feel too small and think you have nothing to give the world.

Give what you would like to have in your life. Praise, smile, assistance, love, and to be appreciated, when you start giving you will start receiving and you will not get what you do not have. Everything you need is already in you.
The source of abundance is not outside but inside. It is who you are. You also do not need to have things to give. A simple act of kindness is abundance and will be felt in more ways than you can ever imagine. MY LIFE is a situation LIFE is what you are. If success in the world gives you stress, pollutes the earth, and exploits others you’re striving to get somewhere in an illusion of the future is pointless.

What the future has in store for you depends on your state of alertness and consciousness now. Our commercial material world would stop existing today if everyone woke up now. You will not be happy or find peace in things. It gives you pleasure now but will sooner or later also give you pain. Having a THING that the world deems as important like a brand name piece of clothing or mansion does not add value to you as a person. If everyone had a mansion you would need to live in a tent to feel superior to others. Enjoy the limited things of this world if you want to but realize that they are not forever and will not give you happiness or joy only knowing your true self will.

Whatever you DO bring you full presence and BEING into it. Be grateful for your life, the sunshine, nature, your expression that you are in this life. That is called Abundance.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Exploring Algonquin Park Canada (by Irma Romano)

This morning I had time to myself and decided to head off to Algonquin Park. Algonquin Provincial Park is located between Georgian Bay and the Ottawa River in Central Ontario. It was established in 1893 one of the oldest parks in Canada. To put things into perspective it is 7653 square kilometers in size. To get an idea of the vastness it would be the size of PEI, or the US state of Delaware and a quarter of the size of Belgium. The Government of Canada has established this park to protect wildlife and it has remained untouched. The only way into this provincial park is by foot, canoe, or kayak, and if you decide to go kayaking for instance you will see an abundance of wildlife such as moose, birds, coyotes, wolves and bears. Many have gotten lost in this park for weeks unable to remember which way they have entered. Being knowledgeable of the woods, nature and survival skills come in handy. You can come here on organized trips with a guide to enjoy over 2 400 lakes, 1 200 kilometres of rivers, over 272 species of birds, amphibians, reptiles, and fish amongst other animals that live in Northern Canada.

There are cabins for rent, camping sites, yurts, and really roughing it if you enjoy tenting in the woods and making sure your food is hanging off a tree just in case a bear comes around. Many of my friends have ventured out here to do vision quests and to just get in touch with nature. I did drive this morning past several cottages in small communities that were on the waterfront, as well as retreat centers and an Algonquin Couples Resort for honeymooners or a romantic getaway. This is a place you do not want to miss if you decide to visit Canada. The beauty of the wildlife and lakes will take your breath away. The smell of pine and green will revive you spirit especially if you’re a city dweller. The best time to come here is between July and August but the park is open all year. If you have ventured in this part of the woods send me your story so we can share it on Massage Planet News. 

Summer is not over yet so get outside. What are you waiting for?


Photo Sources: 

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Why Massage Therapy is Needed like Art in our Society (by Irma Romano)

Somehow in our society when our children say they want to become an actor or a musician most parents fringe at the thought. “You want to become what?” the images of poverty, hardship, and not taken seriously by the public as a whole is the background noise going through the parent’s mind. Imagine just for a second countries without art like a Picasso or museums, theater, music that we hear on the radio or a live show. What would the world look like, feel like without artists? They are very much needed and they feed our souls. They are not less than or not needed. How many of you have seen the ballet or an opera and cried or felt changed afterwards? 

The same is true for the massage therapy profession. “You want to do what?” images of underground parlors and not being taken seriously by the general public comes to mind as well by many.  Reiki and energy work that whoowhoo stuff so flaky etc.…  

Imagine for a minute a planet without body work, massage therapy and healing or holistic thinking of the body and mind of our environment. Did you know that during 911 hundreds of massage therapists traveled to the city to help heal in the crisis?

The Salvation Army, American Red Cross, firefighters, FBI agents and others accepted the healing gift of massage therapists with open arms. Grown men grieved in the arms of massage therapists and their healing hands where felt beyond body beyond the manifested and spoken word. Remember that next time you have a conditioned response to what a person does for a living or an idea of what it is the truth of what they actually do goes beyond your judgment of it and most of the time it is much needed like the air you breathe and food you eat. 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Why the Body Holds Tension & Creates Knots (by Irma Romano)

Clients often ask me during a treatment while I am pressing down on a trigger point, a knot if you will, why they have them in the first place. Some people hold so much tension in their bodies I really have a hard time getting into the muscle as it will resist and refuse to unwind and let go. The physical factors to tension include diet, water intake, work that you do, posture, age, and if you work out or not. If you do not work out your body will be out of balance using only a certain group of muscles daily to do tasks. While some muscles will weaken others will shorten and tighten. For example your pectoral muscles tend to be tight which will weaken your back muscles and create the all too famous hunch over posture you see with office and computer workers. Working out with weights, stretching will prevent this from happening.

Another thing to consider that affects your body and tension is non-physical but affects your body just as much. The body has its own intelligence and your cells are in constant communication with one another reacting to your thoughts. The Universal intelligence runs your body without you having to think about it. It functions on its own. The body is also designed to protect itself from danger with its nervous system which will react to an outside situation protecting you from harm.

Emotions on the other hand are the body’s reaction to thought. The way you perceive life’s events will affect your body and the amount of tension it holds. The body does not know the difference between an actual situation and a thought. If you sit quietly and think about biting into a lemon you will actually create saliva as if you have taken a bite out of the lemon even if you haven’t.

Now if you start creating fearful thoughts in your mind while being in a safe place your body will behave as if it is happening. Your heart beat will increase, your sympathetic nervous system will kick in and you will create tension amongst other things in your body. If you have negative thoughts about the world you live in and what a hostile world you live in or you spend too many hours in your mind thinking in past or future it will show up in your body. Most stress is a reaction to thought not the actual situation. Negative emotions create a toxic body. Envy, jealousy, fear, sadness, hatred, and so many others disrupt the energy flow of the body and create unbalance in the organism.

Looking for balance in the body can be achieve through diet, exercise, hydration, and most of all just being in stillness not resisting life but also surrendering to what faces you in daily life. Adding meditation to your daily activities will help achieve stillness, peace, more joy and reduce stress. Your body will love you for it. Massage can help with trigger points, and helping muscles relax but it has its limitation beyond the massage table. What you do after and what you choose to think is more important in creating long term affects.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Interview with A Match For The Curious Band

My daily discipline of committing to my spiritual exercises sometimes include acknowledging my shadow self the part of ourselves that we stuff down to resist in essence the truth. This exercise if you will entails putting on some of the loudest in your face kind of music crossing over to the dark side allowing it to bring me closer to my emotions and the part of myself that I know we can embrace because they are part of ourmakeup, also because if one doesn’t allow the monsters out to play eventually they have a way of sneaking up in a way that is not always so predictable or endearing.   Two sides of the same coin light and dark life and death, ying and yang both are part of the whole universal cosmic dance. 

Since it has been an unusually synchronistic mysterious year so far I ended up not only listening to loud music but spending an evening with A Match For The Curious an alternative rock band out of Toronto, just me and four talented musicians that have emerged out of the music scene and taken us by surprise with their vocals, raw energy, and chemistry. 

Over the years I have coincidently met talented musicians from many genres and walks of life. Without art, music, and the other art forms our planet would lack mystery, depth, and beauty.  For me it is as important as breathing in air and drinking water. Inspiration comes in all packages and I can’t deny my love of music and the talent behind the scene creating it.It brings communities together, and there is an exchange of energy between musician and audience big or small the transfer is always present and powerful.

Creating a band like A Match For The Curious is no easy task and only a few lucky bands can say they have the flow and brotherhood that this band has. Ask bass player Robin Dworakhow the band came together in the first place? What was the motivation behind the creation? This is the answer you will get.

How long have you been playing together? How did you all decide that you wanted to form this band? 
We just recently got back together after a brief break, but have been playing together since 2008. Steve the guitar player and Brandon the vocalist started the band and asked me to join. We have an amazing chemistry that I have never felt with any other musicians. Our writing just seems to flow out of us. I think that one of the hardest things for bands is to actually get along.

Was being a bass player something that you always had a passion for?
It's a funny story. I have always loved music so when I decided that I wanted to persue music I went to buy my first instrument. I didn't know if I wanted to play guitar or bass. Having never played either before I went into Cosmo Music and picked up the guitar but it felt like I was gonna break it. So I ended up buying a bass. Funny how things happen

I envy people who can sing and have great vocal range that is an instrument on its own. Screaming is so primal even if we cannot all sing we should at least try to scream when we can. In heavy metal the screaming and is there to invoke anything in particular? 
Screaming is an outlet that to me is sometimes even more necessary than singing. Screaming is a way of enhancing an emotion, bringing it even closer to the surface

To inspire through strong lyrics, music sounds, your image that you portray, what are you trying to evoke in your audience and why? 
I don't think we try and force out something that isn't natural to us, we just write what is in our hearts. And because of that, I think a lot of people relate to our lyrics and music and really enjoy listening to our songs.

Do you all have a hand at writing? What is a typical rehearsal like and how do you create your music?
Ya definitely, we all come up with different ideas, some good some bad and we go from there. Most of the lyrics are written by Brandon and I think it's important for the singer to have a real connection with what he is singing about. 

What is the space like in the creative process?
We usually start practices off by either warming up with a set of our completed songs, or running through a few of our songs in progress. From there depending on how the vibe is in the room we will either bring forward brand new material or work on the unfinished songs. The studio can definitely get pretty intense when new songs are being written, although we all work very well together and know what buttons not to push.

Sometimes I find that you can’t force things to come out. They come when they want to. Can you relate to that statement?
Absolutely, you definitely can't force a song out, and if you do it will end up sounding that way. Sometimes songs are written in 5min other times it takes months. But however long it takes it takes.

Where do you find your inspiration to write the way you do?
Depends, I usually find inspiration from what is happening at the time in my life. Sometimes I will put on my IPod and listen to some of my favorite albums and get inspiration that way as well. A lot of the time it is a feeling I am having or the type of mood I am in

Are you observers of life noticing the way people do things, a moment or emotion in time?
We all observe and grow throughout life. There are always those key moments in one’s life that will always hit home, whether it be something to cherish or something to learn from. I think all the elements within music are essential, I guess it depends on how you want to take the music in. For me, I feel that the music plays the most important role. A song can have no lyrics whatsoever and still make a person cry, smile, or laugh. Lyrics are just a bonus if written well. It’s all about mood within a song. People connect with emotion, bottom line, so if you strike that chord with you and your audience, that's all that counts

For you Robin what is your strong suit? the music, sound, or lyrics. What is more important? 
When I’m on stage I feel like I can play a character, I can be someone else for an hour, and I do it very well. I also take pride in being able to keep things calm when it comes to band business.

I think the music and lyrics are the most important thing. If you don't have great lyrics the music won't follow and vice-versa. If you can play a song with just vocals and acoustic guitar and it sounds good, then you have a good song. The overall sound is one of the last steps in the writing process in my mind.

I find most band have a statement whether it’s political, environmental, something that they want to change in the world. Is that true for A Match for the Curious?
When it comes to our music we are not thinking about making any political, environmental or world changing statements. We aim to create something that anyone can relate to. If a fan listens to something and can relate it to their political, environmental views, or some change that they would like to see in the world, then we've done our job. We want our music to be multifaceted, because every listener is unique

What should we be curious about? 
In our world curiosity never killed the cat. The mixture of our personalities, influences and experiences leads us down a new path every time we sit down to create. We are hoping to inspire our listeners and ignite in them a thirst for seeking out more than what is on the surface. 

If we are “Curious” enough how can we listen to you live. Is there a tour, a gig coming up?
We are currently working on our comeback show. It will be at a great venue calle lee's Palace in Toronto, On on Fri Aug 31stand of course you can check out all our interviews, pics, videos and music on these websites! this is our official website

The Five Dollar Massage (by Irma Romano)

Two days ago I went to Toronto on the Danforth to do an interview for Massage Planet News and a three hour photo shoot with a local rock band. I also started promoting a new spa Rayne Spa which is only three months old. Tucked in and not always so obvious to passer-by and under new ownership made it quite a challenge in terms of shouting out to the neighborhood that we were new and open.

I took matters into my own hands sort of speak and decided I was going to advertise 5 dollar back massages for twenty minutes 11 massages later I had sparked an interest in the spa and generated bookings for the following week. 

What I learned in that moment was that if you are not afraid to give of your energy, time, and care you will create clients long term. I also walked from store to store telling them about us and what we did. Don’t forget to come by for our Wednesday special. Some people had to come inside to ask questions just because they were in total disbelief of the price and service. My Starbucks coffee costs more than a twenty minute back rub. 

So don’t be afraid to introduce yourself, be creative with your space and do something that on one else is. Add a lot of love to what you do, be generous and give your time you will see that the Universe will not forget about you when you live in gratitude and presence. 

Running a business takes time to grow but people feel weather you really mean it and that you have their best interest at heart. They will want to support you and this will build a loyal customer base. 

The last two days has taught me what service is really about and that as long as I give with no fear or wanting something in return.  I will never have to worry about how the story ends. If you have a chair massage go out into your community and test it out. I would love to hear about how it worked for you. The 5 dollar massage can become a diamond in the rough. 

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

August is Starting Off With High Energy at Rayne Spa on the Danforth in Toronto

(With Renay, owner of Rayne Spa)

August is starting off with high energy at Rayne Spa on the Danforth in Toronto. My own experience has been an uplifting and a positive one performing 20 minute massage on the rooftop patio on this sunny afternoon. As a massage therapist I have enjoyed a variety of clientele that have come to see me about re-energizing their backs, necks and shoulders with these brief yet powerful treatments while enjoying the  outdoors. All of the local businesses and clients can benefited coming here for cool refreshment and some well-earned pampering. Unlike many places I have worked in this unique organic spa caters to the wellbeing of the clients, staff, and environment. It’s a win win situation here at Rayne Spa and I look forward to lending my hands in the coming months to my favorite neighborhood and spa on Toronto the Danforth.

Today I was thrilled to find an article by "Neighborhood Living" that talks about Rayne Spa, giving it a well deserved review:

"With an interior as restful as its name, Rayne Spa is the latest addition to Danforth’s spa scene … and it certainly raises the bar. A beautiful four-storey reno on an old building near Broadview has transformed this space into a restful oasis. With a sunny deck for lounging, and multiple floors of cleanly designed treatment areas, Rayne Spa will satisfy anyone who is looking for a touch of luxury. A water wall on the main floor, dark wood cabinetry and calming music set the tone from the moment one steps in the door.

This is no ordinary spa, and the woman behind it all, Renay Loucaides, explains that after a whirlwind month to get things ready, she’s enormously happy with this new chapter in her life. An aesthetician by training, Renay worked for MAC for years, starting in make-up and finishing in a top corporate position. From there, this busy mother of two young girls went to Apple, where she was responsible for 200 employees and, later, to Victoria’s Secret.
Her immersion in the business world gave Renay first-hand knowledge of what women need to keep them going. “These amazing companies, particularly Victoria’s Secret, helped me to understand that girl power is really based on strong self-esteem. I love the thought of pampering hard-working women so they are refreshed and ready to face their busy lives.”

A life-long resident of the Danforth neighbourhood, Renay’s community involve- ment doesn’t stop at the doors of the spa. As well as sponsoring corporate events – a reward party for employees or a girl party for grads – Rayne Spa also offers spa days to organizations like Nellie’s, so women in all circumstances have the opportunity to be pampered.
In every way, Renay has been able to express her values and promote her lifestyle choices in this “dream come true” venture. She’s aiming to have the business green certified and, apart from the eyelash extensions, all her products are organic or vegan, even the nail shellac, which will be available soon. The staff – knowledgeable, well-trained veterans Renay has known for years – share the same level of commitment to exceptional care and quality.
Renay opened the doors to Rayne Spa on April 1 of this year to a warm Danforth welcome, and the lovely aesthetic of the spa and its focus on organic replenishing treatments have already made it a neighbourhood destination." (Source)