This week I attended a reflexology conference. It was my first and I didn't know what to expect. It was fabulous! Often as a reflexologist, you can feel like an alien talking to people about your love of feet and the amazing things they can do. I know that many people can't even stand their own feet, let alone other people's so it was pure joy for me to spend a day around so many like-minded people.
More than the name suggests, this conference was about community. People who love something getting together to share knowledge. Even once the teaching was done a group of us sat together for dinner and got to know each other - shared our stories. What struck me is what I've read about many times - when you find your sense of purpose it makes you happy! Community gives you a sense of belonging, which is also good for your health.
I was listening to a podcast recently where Johann Hari talked about the real cost of rising isolation. He explained that humans are designed to be part of a tribe and this is how we work best. Over time, here in the western world, the tribal way of living has disappeared. Extended families are rare, often families are scattered all over the country or countries. When we age we no longer stay with our loved ones. With the rise of social media people are spending more time online instead of going out to meet friends or even calling them, with texting becoming more popular. Human connection is becoming more distant, which is worrying as research shows that loneliness may be a more significant risk factor than cancer, obesity, exercise or nutrition.
I felt incredibly fortunate to be part of such a supportive and passionate community. Add to this the tips I picked up that my clients have benefited from this week...I really couldn't have asked for more. My passion for reflexology just keeps growing and growing and I honestly believe that adding monthly reflexology treatments to your routine will be the best decision you could make. It prompts your body to do the job it was made to do by encouraging balance and relaxation. If you haven't already, give it a try...you will not regret it.