Lessons Learned on the First Day of Student Clinic

    By now you know I am a nervous Nelly and my own worst critic.  I regret to inform you that going into my first day of clinic was no different. I asked a million questions, looked and reviewed the schedule 100 times, thought through my client intake, massage routines and SOAP note procedures YET I was still so antsy I got very little sleep the night before.
    Before even attempting to lay down for the night I reviewed the student clinic dress code. I wore my black athletic pants and Adrian School of massage t-shirt. Since I live in flip flops all summer I made sure I dug out a pair of socks and set out my tennis shoes. CHECK! Next I packed my bag for the day. I needed my massage products, product holster, and bolster. For clinic we use linens provided by the school so my sheets got the day off CHECK! I packed a second bag with a bottle of water, a snack, my computer (should I get some down time I could blog;-) and my notebook in case I needed a quick reminder on how to fill out my SOAP notes CHECK! I was all packed for the next day and now all I needed to do was lay in bed and spend the majority of the night staring at the ceiling running through all the possible scenarios a client may walk in with and how I would handle that. Oh and stress about the fact that I wasn't getting enough sleep.
      Morning comes. Even without much sleep I hopped right up. My nerves were over shadowed by sudden, intense excitement! In my excitement, I got to the school almost a half hour early.  If you are one of the first on the schedule for the day there is no point getting there that early because the doors are still locked LOL Arriving early did however, afford me the time to sit in my car and watch the gentle rain that had just broken through the clouds. It was incredibly calming. Feeling at peace I walked in and grabbed my linens.  Next I claimed a room, it's first come first served so if you have a favorite room keep that in mind. Last but not least, I dressed and adjusted my table.
    After my room was all set I made my way to the office where I picked the brain of our clinic supervisor for the day, Kendra. She was SO sweet. As a class we haven't had much of a chance to get to know her yet. She asked how I was feeling and if I had any questions. We worked our way through my questions and I was feeling pretty good. That was until about 10 minutes before my first appointment came about. Sudden all the butterflies I thought I had left in the parking lot found their way right back to my gut.  My nervous pacing gave me a way and Kendra gave me some great advice. She said "all you are feeling right now will disappear as soon as you step in that room. As soon as you touch that client you remember you are here to help them and make them feel good ...that's all that matters" that was so comforting to me in that moment. That is why we are here after all! Guess what....she was TOTALLY right. As soon I walked in, I was in the zone and the nerves were just as quickly gone as they had reappeared.
     Student clinic is a big part of your journey to becoming a massage therapist. You will be spending 125 hours here! Like any thing new, it can be a little nerve wracking but I hope you can take away from my experience #1 you're ready for this! Your instructors wouldn't let you in clinic if you didn't have the skill set needed. #2 the other students and your clinic supervisor are an awesome support system and happy to help #3 take a deep breath and remember why you're here, enjoy this time working with new people and practicing all your learning. This journey is already going so fast! We are already about half way there!

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