I know I bitch about stingy tips, complain when business is slow, etc., etc.
However, the reason I went into massage therapy still guides me: I want to help people and make them feel better.
Whenever I can alleviate a client's pain, when a client exits the treatment room beaming, saying he feels fantastic, like a million bucks, outstanding, any monetary considerations are immaterial.
I massaged an elderly lady last week who'd had rotator cuff surgery a few months ago. She was in a lot of pain, and still didn't have full range of motion of that arm. Even though she was booked for a Swedish massage, NOT a deep tissue, I still went ahead and did deep/injury work on her arm and shoulder. She told me, "You don't know how good this feels. Bless your hands! You better take care of those hands, they're gonna help a lot of people!"
I felt such a burst of joy when she said that, it was like an explosion of sunshine in my chest. I had to hold back tears.
She went on to have a facial after our session, and I ran into her later while I was between other services as she was getting dressed to leave; she smiled at me and told me again how good I'd made her feel.
That evening, as I collected my tips from the tip-box, I saw she'd left myself and the aesthetician who had done her facial $2.00 each. As my colleague groused, I just smiled and walked away.