2017 Year in Review

Here is my annual year in review. I’ve been doing these posts for a number of years now (2012201320142015, 2016) and it’s a great exercise to reflect on what you’ve accomplished and learned over the previous year. If 2016 was a year of “gratitude”, then the theme for 2017 was “transitions”.

Just weeks before the New Year rolled in, my long time partner, Anne Williams, and I decided to get married. We wanted to do it before Seth turned 18, so we set a February date. We’ve both been there and done the marriage thing before, so we decided this would be our personal celebration. So we ran off to Las Vegas (Anne in a purple mini-dress with white go-go boots and me in a purple suit) and had a classic Elvis wedding.

I wrote a new book in May and it went to bestseller status on Amazon. I didn’t really plan on writing it, but when I came across an old BodyworkBiz blog post on a free email service called TinyLetter, I thought that massage therapists (or any business owners really) should know how easy it is to get started in email marketing. The book is called TinyLetter Guide: Set up, design and send your first email newsletter in under an hour… for free! I also set this up as a video course at SkillShare. Currently you can get a three month trial at SkillShare with access to thousands of video courses for only 99 cents.

Then in June, I published two more books: The Relax to the Max Guide to Chair Massage Techniques and Chair Massage Marketing 101: Your step-by-step Guide to Creating a Thriving Chair Massage Business.

At one point this year, I had five of my books in the top 20 massage bestsellers in Amazon. I’m glad this necessary marketing information lives on now that BodyworkBiz no longer exists.

Seth finished high school and was uncertain what direction his future would go in. He met a wonderful girl named Brianne and followed her to an Outdoor Adventure Naturalist program at Algonquin College where he is currently learning outdoor skills, from white water rafting to foraging for food. I know all parents go through the process of letting their kids go at some point. Knowing that doesn’t make it any easier and it was very sad to have him leave home. I take comfort in the fact that he is having an awesome time and learning some fantastic skills.

My business partners, Scott Dartnall, Melanie Hayden, and I pioneered the idea of a virtual conference when we started World Massage Conference. Ten years ago, the idea of a virtual conference was unheard of as streaming video was still in its infancy and most of us were still using slow dial up Internet access. But we took the leap and created something truly unique. Ten years and about 400 online presentations later it’s still the premiere event in the profession as thousands of massage therapists from around the world join us online to learn from some of the top educators and experts in massage. This year marks my last year of producing the conference, but we have something very exciting planned for 2018. Stay tuned.

The fall was relaxing. I put up my feet for a while, so to speak and explored the world of English. I also continued my education in video and filmmaking, joining some great groups and getting out with my camera.