Hi there. I’m Ali. A massage therapist, a business owner, and a Mama.
I got into massage because my mother used to employ child labor as a bribe in exchange for a delayed bedtime. (She would let me stay up late and would read to me if I gave her a massage.) I was a night owl and decided this was not a bad gig, so after getting a degree in art (right brain for the win!) and a minor in business (left brain for the win!), I went forth and tackled massage school at The Boulder College of Massage Therapy.
Coming from a long line of entrepreneurs, it was inevitable that I would one day end up working for myself. Most days I love it, some days I like it, and on the occasional day, I feel like throwing in the towel and having the luxury of leaving work at work. But really when it comes down to it, I can’t imagine life any other way.
This entrepreneurial journey started in 2008 when I rented space by the hour from an existing massage therapy business. While building my practice, I supplemented my income by working at several spas around the town I live in, Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Currently, I employ around (this number is always fluctuating) 15 therapists and receptionists in my business, Kneading Hands. My minimal managerial work on a cruise ship kinda sorta prepared me for the demands of managing therapists, but most of my knowledge has been gained from trial and error experience. And boy have there been trials and errors!
In spite of those tribulations, the journey has been rewarding. I have poured myself into building a practice that while not perfect, nurtures and supports the individual, a place where judgment has no place. Just as I am, so is my practice, always a work in progress. And guess what, I’m proud of what I’ve built.
In 2016 I experienced the single most amazing thing ever, giving birth to my baby boy. The four hours of skin to skin contact I was so blessed to experience immediately after he was born changed me. My heart grew, I had more empathy, I valued different things. So when I was about to head back to work, a work I loved, a work that had defined me for years, I was scared. Scared to leave my son, scared to see if I could still be the kind of therapist I was before becoming a mother, scared to navigate being a mother, wife, therapist, and employer.
I searched the web for tidbits to help me feel more secure about heading back to a career I cherished. I found very little information. I found resources for mothers who worked from home, resources for stay at home mothers, but very few for those who actually left their babes every day. This lack of information inspired me. It moved me to create a space where mothers who worked outside the home, specifically those who did massage could feel understood. A place where they could find information to not only help them survive but also to thrive. And so, The Massage Business Mama was born.
I hope you feel inspired and supported by the information you receive here at The Massage Business Mama! Thanks for checking it out!