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Ellijay, Georgia

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Setting Client Priorities and Goals. Treatment Planning as To-Do List.

When it comes to Massage Therapy Session & Treatment Planning, the client’s priorities and treatment goals can and should be treated much like a to-do list.

Putting check marks next to daily, weekly, and monthly items can give you a sense of accomplishment, allow you to feel productive, and enable you to meet necessary goals within a workday or help others to do so. It doesn’t matter how big or small of a task each item is.

 I enjoy having a to-do list.
 I like seeing each task or goal neatly written down.
 I like the reminder of things I need or want to do and prioritizing each item.
 I like breaking down bigger assignments into smaller, less-overwhelming undertakings.
 I especially like marking things off of my to-do list as they are completed.

I often add in self-care tasks just as reminders during busy days, or I’ll add seemingly minimal undertakings as motivation towards bigger, more time-consuming tasks. As I mark off each item upon completion, I am driven to be more consistent with what I have been doing, to maintain or expand upon the accomplishments of each day, and to progress forward toward bigger projects and goals.

Treatment Planning as a To-Do List
When it comes to Session & Treatment Planning, the client’s priorities and treatment goals can and should be treated much like a to-do list. Each session can be thought of as a group of tasks to be completed, with each subsequent session building upon previous ones towards a bigger outcome. The Treatment Plan and Suggestions for Client Self-Care can be thought of as a way to establish and organize client priorities and as a way to maintain progress and steadily improve toward reaching Client Goals.

Making & Meeting Client Goals
The Cohutta Healing Arts night class has recently been studying “Client Assessment” and how to create and record an individualized Treatment Plan for their clients. Visual cues, along with input from the client, and palpation findings during a session, aid the therapist in understanding the client’s goals, priorities and expectations for their sessions. Together, the massage therapist and the client can utilize this information to create a treatment plan that will be beneficial and satisfactory for the client. It can be satisfying for the client, as well as for the massage therapist, to see therapeutic changes being made and goals being met from one session to the next. Writing in or checking off such outcomes as an “Improvement in Range of Motion” or a “Marked Reduction in Pain” on the treatment notes, can be reassuring for both the massage therapist and the massage client. Noting the goals met can encourage them to continue with their treatment plan by scheduling future sessions.

A career you’ll love is waiting for you!
For more information about the benefits of massage, becoming a massage therapist, or receiving massage and bodywork, visit: or call 855-515-2424.

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by Leslie Byrd LMT, CHAI graduate & contributing author to the CHAI Massage Blog.