Millions of people suffer from muscle tension and pain and seek some sort of relief. Massage is a great way to find that relief, but for most of us, going to a massage therapist every other day isn’t tenable. And finding someone who’s not a massage therapist but willing to lend a hand is also difficult. That’s where acupressure mats come in. These mats have bumps or spikes that are placed in patterns that are designed to help stimulate pressure points on your body and relieve tension and restore the flow of chi through your body.
Not all acupressure mats are created equally, however. And finding the best one for your needs and particular situation can be tricky, especially if you’re going into the shopping experience blind. Not to worry, however. With our help, you will be able to get the acupressure mat that best fits your life. Our acupressure mat reviews will help you see what the top acupressure mats on Amazon are and what features make them great and what they could do better. Then we’ll go into depth on a full featured acupressure mat buying guide that discusses the benefits and how they work.
- 1 Acupressure Mats Reviews
- 2 Best Acupressure Mats Buying Guide
- 2.1 How Does an Acupressure Mat Work?
- 2.2 How Chinese Medicine Views Acupressure
- 2.3 How Traditional Western Medicine Views Acupressure
- 2.4 Benefits of Using an Acupressure Mat
- 2.5 What Features to Consider When Buying an Acupressure Mat
- 2.6 Four Tips for Getting the Most out of Your Acupressure Mat
- 2.7 FAQ
- 2.7.1 How Often Should You Use an Acupressure Mat?
- 2.7.2 How Long Should I Lay on An Acupressure Mat?
- 2.7.3 Is An Acupressure Mat Painful?
- 2.7.4 Should You Wear Clothes While Using an Acupressure Mat?
- 2.7.5 ● Should an Acupressure Mat Be Used During Pregnancy?
- 2.7.6 Are There Any Other Times That You Shouldn’t Use Acupressure Mats?
- 2.7.7 Can Acupressure Mats Be Used for Cellulite Reduction?
- 2.7.8 Can You Use Acupressure to Help with Cancer Treatments?
- 3 Acupressure Mats Comparison Chart
- 4 Conclusion
Acupressure Mats Reviews
- Features: Release tension
- Color: Green and Silver
- Dimensions: 9 x 7 x 15 in
- Weight: 2 pounds
- Warranty: Manufacturers
- Features: Advanced Stress Reliever
- Color: Ocean Blue
- Dimensions: 16.9 x 13.4 x 6.3 in
- Weight: 3.2 pounds
- Warranty: Manufacturers
- Features: Improve circulation
- Color: Magenta
- Dimensions: 27.5 x 1 x 16.5 in
- Weight: 1.7 pounds
- Warranty: Manufacturers
- Features: Muscle Relaxation
- Color: Grey
- Dimensions: 16.5 x 8 x 9.5 in
- Weight: 1.54 pounds
- Warranty: Manufacturers
- Zen Guru
- Features: Stress Relief
- Color: Mat & Pillow Set -Blue
- Dimensions: 26 x 17 x 1 in
- Weight: 1.7 pounds
- Warranty: Manufacturers
- Features: Relieve Sciatic Pains
- Color: Purple
- Dimensions: N/A
- Weight: 2.3 pounds
- Warranty: Manufacturers
Nayoya Acupressure Mat w/Neck Pillow
This acupressure mat measures 16” (W) x 26” (L) and features 6210 micro points spread out across 115 individual cells. The included acupressure pillow is an arched design that features 1782 micro points to target your neck and shoulder pain. The tiny acupressure points can be used to stimulate the pressure points in your back to help alleviate stress, tension, and other pain. As a bonus, the mat rolls up easily and fits into the included premium carry box. The box is made to resemble a briefcase and will also store the neck pillow.
The mat is nicely padded underneath the micro acupressure points and is covered with a poly-cotton blend that wipes clean easily. This is beneficial in case you decide to stand on the mat and use it as a way to activate the reflexology points on your feet.
- Thick mat
- Nice cover
- Included neck pillow
- Included carry case is discreet
- Only 16” x 26”, so cannot target the entire body at the same time
Ajna Acupressure Mat and Pillow Set
The Ajna Eco Lite Acupressure Mat is a perfect solution for the environmentally conscious person who wants to relieve their back pain and tension without pharmaceutical intervention. This mat is filled with a plant based eco foam, while the included neck pillow is cotton stuffed for comfort. The micro acupressure spikes on the pillow and mat are constructed of High Impact PolyStyrene (HIPS) medical grade plastic for safety and easy cleaning. The covers of the mat and pillow are 100% cotton to allow breathability and easy spot cleaning.
There are over 6000 individual acupressure points across 221 individual rosette patterned pressure pads on the mat, and 53 individual rosettes on the neck pillow The tight clusters and varying positions of the acupressure nodes allows them to apply pressure to every point on your back for nearly instant relief of tension and back pain. Additionally, you can stand on this mat to use it as a reflexology mat and target the pressure points on your feet.
- Eco friendly design
- 100% cotton cover
- Effective Rosette Acupressure Design
- Included pillow is traditionally shaped instead of a neck roll
- Half-body mat doesn’t allow you to apply pressure to full body at once
Spoonk Acupressure Mat
This acupressure mat from Spoonk is normally sold in Whole Foods, but is also available on Amazon. It features environmentally friendly ingredients combined with 6210 micro stimulation points that are constructed of hypoallergenic ABS plastic. The thick eco-friendly foam is covered in premium cotton covering to provide complete relaxation as you let the acupressure points work their magic and bleed away stress.
This mat comes with a 30 day money back guarantee and an impressive 5-Year warranty. It is also available in multiple fantastic and bright colors that will match your wardrobe or décor. It measure 15” (W) x 36” (L), and features 230 individual acupressure nodes, which each have 27 micro pressure points each.
- Eco friendly product
- Thick eco-friendly foam for comfort
- 6210 individual micro acupressure nodes
- Includes a stylish and discreet carry bag
- Narrower than other models
- Does not include a pillow
ProsourceFit Acupressure Mat and Pillow Set
This amazing acupressure mat and pillow are amazing for providing long-term relief for back or neck pain. Using this mat will help you find deeper relaxation thanks to the 6210 acupressure points on the mat and 1782 acupressure points on the neck pillow. Both the pillow and the mat are filled with an environmentally friendly plant-based eco foam. The cover is made of 100% cotton that comes in 7 fun and unique colors.
Each acupressure node on the pillow and mat contain 27 individual micro points to help activate your pressure points and release the flow of chi throughout your body. The included user guide shows how you can use the acupressure mat to isolate and target individual body parts such as your lower back, hamstrings, or even soothe your tired feet.
- Environmentally friendly materials
- 6210 micro acupressure points across hundreds of nodes
- Available in 7 fun colors
- Easy to use at home or office
- No carrying bag included
Zen Guru Acupressure Mat and Pillow Set
With 6210 individual micro acupressure points on the mat and 1782 micro acupressure points on the included neck pillow, this mat and pillow set are sure to help you find the relief from back tension and pain that you’ve been looking for. The neck pillow is also great to use for reflexology and the map on the back of the mat show you what the different pressure points are so you can use it effectively. For targeting individual muscle groups or body parts, the acupressure mat is amazing at loosening and relaxing you.
This mat comes in 4 different colors and also includes a free discreet carrying bag. This mat also features two different color acupressure nodes, allowing you to position yourself and track progress on flexibility exercises as well. Some nodes also feature magnets to help target the neck, spine, and lumbar regions; magnetostatic fields can help align your chakra and alleviate pain as well.
- 6210 Micro Acupressure Points on the Mat
- Eight magnets on mat and pillow for magnet therapy
- Reflexology guide on reverse of mat
- Includes discreet carry bag
- Difficult to isolate areas for trigger point therapy
DoSensePro Acupressure Mat and Pillow Set
This 28-inch long acupressure mat provides deep tissue acupressure therapy to help revitalize you and stimulate your blood flow. With over 6200 individual micro acupressure points, this mat can target your entire back at one go; you can also use the included neck pillow to target reflexology points on the bottom of your feet for added therapeutic benefits.
The mat measures 16.5” (W) x 29” (L) and the neck pillow measures 15.0” wide and 6.0” deep. This kit includes a reusable hot and cold gel pack for additional heat or cold therapy during warmups or cooldowns. The gel pack can be microwaved for soothing heat or frozen to ice down sore muscles after a workout. The mat also comes with a discreet carry bag that can be slung easily over one shoulder for transport.
- Extra Large length allows targeting of entire back at one time
- Included gel pack provides additional therapeutic benefits
- Pillow doubles as reflexology pillow for targeting specific nodes
- Only available in purple
Best Acupressure Mats Buying Guide
Now that you’ve read our acupressure mat reviews and get a sense for what type of mats are out there, it’s time for us to help you pick the best mat through our buying guide. First, we’ll talk about how acupressure mats work, and then cover some benefits. Some of these you may know and some you might not. Then we’ll discuss the features you should consider when shopping, and lastly, we’ll cover some tips on using your new acupressure mat.
How Does an Acupressure Mat Work?
The way that an acupressure mat works depends on whether you subscribe to traditional Western medicine or if you’re open to the theories that alternative and traditional Chinese medicine bring to the table.
How Chinese Medicine Views Acupressure
According to traditional Chinese medicine, the body contains energy channels that run from our fingertips to our brains and finally to a specific organ or network of organs. There are 12 major meridians that connect and allow the flow of chi through the body. When a meridian is blocked or out of balance, the flow of chi is interrupted. Acupressure works by massaging the meridian lines and restoring the proper balance and flow of energy through the body.
There are thousands of pressure points that lie along these meridians; depending on their location, can affect you in different ways. One example is anti-nausea wrist bands that apply pressure to the inside of your wrist in between the two tendons. This pressure point (called the PC 6) is recognized as one that alleviates nausea in certain people.
How Traditional Western Medicine Views Acupressure
There aren’t many studies into acupressure in Western medicine. However, as more people request integrated and holistic medical treatments, this is changing. More and more Western educated physicians are beginning research into the effectiveness of acupressure as a treatment for various ailments. One systematic review of acupressure was released in 2013 as an aggregate of fifteen different studies into acupressure’s effectiveness in treating maladies such as lower back pain, chronic headaches, and menstrual pain. This study begins to show that acupressure is effective in a large segment of the population for relieving these pains.
Traditional Western medicine explains these benefits as a side effect of releasing endorphins during the treatments. Others say that the benefits come from reduced muscle tension, improved blood flow, or the blocking of pain receptors in tissue.
Whatever the explanation, there is no denying that acupressure treatments work for millions of people in a safe way that doesn’t require taking any medication.
Benefits of Using an Acupressure Mat
When used regularly, an acupressure mat can provide many benefits. Here are four that are commonly cited by people when they discuss the benefits of acupressure.
If you suffer from arthritis of the hip or just lower back pain, using an acupressure mat can help alleviate those aches and pains. Additionally, women who suffer from menstrual cramps may find relief from painful dysmenorrhea by using an acupressure mat and laying on their side or stomachs. Acupressure neck pillows help to relieve pain in the neck and shoulders as well. Acupressure does this because it helps to release endorphins in your body. There have been several studies that prove acupressure’s effectiveness in this.
One key benefit of using an acupressure mat or pillow is the reduction of stress you feel in the long term. There have been studies that show that regular acupressure therapy can help naturally treat depression and anxiety. Using a mat can also help alleviate excess fatigue and improve your mood.
Improve Blood Circulation
By applying pressure to different parts of the body, you can gain a sympathetic reaction in other parts of the body that causes an increase in blood flow, generally about 3 minutes after the therapy stops. In one study, acupuncture done on the foot increased blood flow in the arm. This shows that stimulating a pressure point does have an effect beyond the initial point of therapy.
Acupressure has been shown to help numerous people get more satisfying nights of sleep. There have been several studies, ranging from women in menopause to people suffering from insomnia. In both cases, acupressure helped to significantly improve the length and the quality of sleep.
The increase of blood flow across your body has another significant side effect. With additional blood circulation, more waste products are removed and nutrients will be provided to your body, which helps in promoting healing. While it isn’t possible to target specific areas with a broad therapeutic device like an acupressure mat, you can receive increased benefits across your entire body by using a mat regularly.
Lower Blood Pressure
There were studies conducted in Taiwan in 2016 on how acupressure helped patients with hypertension (high blood pressure). The study showed that applying acupressure to specific pressure points (including the Taichong point) reduced blood pressure by a significant amount immediately after treatment and for up to a half hour afterwards.
There have yet to be long term studies on acupressure’s effectiveness on high blood pressure, including how often it should be used and how much pressure and where.
What Features to Consider When Buying an Acupressure Mat
So now that you know what benefits there are from using an acupressure mat and you know how they work, you need to know what you should be looking for when deciding which acupressure mat to buy. Here are nine of the most commonly cited reasons why a buyer chooses one acupressure mat over another.
Acupressure mats come in a wide variety of sizes. However, they are not all created equally. Most are designed to allow an average size person lay on them so that all of the acupressure points cover their entire back. If you are larger, then you want to look for and acupressure mat that will accommodate your particular size. However, remember that if you plan to travel, a large mat is not especially suited for packing away in a carry-on or a suitcase. In these cases, you can often find acupressure mats that are smaller. These are easier to pack away, and you can then use them to pinpoint specific problem areas such as your lower back while you are on the road.
For example, The Spoonk acupressure mats come with a full size acupressure mat and a half mat instead of a neck pillow. This should be a great solution for you if you plan to travel a lot. You can use the full size at home and take the half-size with you on the road.
Number of Acupressure Points
When it comes to acupressure points, there are two things you should look at. The first is the total number of acupressure points on the mat, and the second is the number of acupressure nodes. The nodes will have anywhere from 20 to 30 individual points on them. And you will find anywhere from 200 to 300 individual nodes on an acupressure mat.
One thing you want to watch out for, is that the nodes are not spaced too closely together. If this happens, then rather than getting acupressure therapy on specific pressure points, it will be almost as if you are just resting on one solid piece.
Most of the acupressure mats that we have reviewed are made of eco-friendly materials. This means that you are getting 100% cotton, and foam that is not made from Plastics. This is good for creating a platform for you to lie on comfortably. When it comes to the actual acupressure nodes and points, you would want them to be made of a hypoallergenic and easy to clean material. Some of the best options are high impact polystyrene, or ABS Plastics.
If you like, there are several acupressure mat manufacturers who embrace the holistic and eco-friendly aspect and make mats from repurposed and recycled materials like coconut fiber and recycled plastics. These mats are often a little more expensive, but the benefit to the environment by not creating another source of single use plastic is a small price to trade.
A mat is inherently designed to be portable, depending on the size. A regular mat by itself is going to be able to be rolled up into a rather compact tube that can then be stored and carried in the carrying bag that usually comes with these sets. If you get a larger mat, then you may find that the acupressure mat is not that portable. If portability is an issue, then stick with a standard size or get a half size mat.
Remember that the padding or foam you want to have a fairly long life. You don’t want an acupressure mat where the phone breaks down and becomes brittle and starts to disintegrate. Most plant-based foams are great in this regard. Additionally, you want to make sure that the padding is not super thick but also comfortable enough to lie on.
Remember that the thinner the mat, the more pressure you’re going to get from the acupressure points on the mat. If you are looking for an acupressure mat that gives you a more substantial feel, then get a mat with a half inch or less of padding. If you’re worried about the life of the foam, then look for a mat with a good warranty. Some come with warranties that extend up to 5 years.
Easy to Clean
You should getting mat that is easy to clean. Remember that when you use an acupressure mat, you want to lay on it with either a thin shirt or no clothing at all. If you choose the latter option, then the acupressure points are going to scrape away bits of skin and oil and dirt.
Look for acupressure nodes that are open and have a pattern that is easy to wipe clean with a disinfectant wipe. Additionally, the cover of the match should have a tight weave so that you can spot clean it easily. While acupressure mats should not be put through the washer on a tumble cycle, you can disinfect them with a spray or wipes.
One of the best perks about an acupressure mat that you are able to travel with is that you don’t have to worry about a hard bed in a hotel interfering with your sleep. Using your acupressure mat on the road for 10 to 15 minutes a night will help soothe and relax you, and help you get a good night sleep, no matter what type of bed you find yourself in.
That being said, if you are a traveler, then look for an acupressure mat that is going to be easy to pack into your suitcase or carry-on. While full-size mats range anywhere from 15 to 17 in in width and can roll up into a package that is three or four inch in diameter, only you can determine if that’s small enough are compact enough for you to fit into your travel suitcase.
When choosing and acupressure mat, sometimes you’ll find yourself narrowing it down to two or three choices that you love. If this is a case, and you’re wondering how to decide between them, we would recommend that you look at the accessories. If all of your bottom line choices are more or less equal in every other respect, then the included accessories will be the determining Factor. Here are a couple of accessories that are nice to have if not downright essential.
o Carry bag – This is almost a must have when it comes to an accessory. A travel bag or carry bag, allows you to roll your acupressure mat up and not worry about it unrolling while you’re walking around. Additionally, a good carry bag also provides a discrete storage location for your acupressure mat when it’s not in use. Most acupressure mats will come with a carry bag, but some come with a carry case which provides additional protection.
o Hot and cold packs – some acupressure mats come with additional therapeutic devices such as heating or ice packs. The best come with a gel that can either be microwave to create a hot pad or frozen to provide cold therapy. Remember that when warming up, you never want to use cold, and when cooling down, you don’t want to use Heat. If you plan to use your acupressure pad to help in your recovery and cool down from a workout, a hot or cold gel pack is a great thing to have.
Most acupressure pads are extremely affordable, most falling under $40. In rare cases, you may find an acupressure mat. Is more expensive. Before you press the button, thinking that a more expensive acupressure mat must be better, make sure to look at its features and make that determination for yourself. If the acupressure mats benefits are worth the premium price, then by all means get it.
Four Tips for Getting the Most out of Your Acupressure Mat
When it comes right down to it, the way to use an acupressure mat is to lie on it, sit on it, or stand on. However, there are ways that you can get more out of your acupressure mat then just doing that. Here are four tips for using your acupressure mat and getting the most out of it.
1. Go Slow At First – When you first start using an acupressure mat, it’s going to be uncomfortable. It might even be a little painful. But don’t let that dissuade you. Stick with it, and you’re going to reap all sorts of benefits. However, how do you avoid that burn out where you just wonder if the pain is worth the effort? By going slow. What we mean by this is if you are just beginning on your acupressure mat Journey, then the first time you use it, don’t lie on it for 45 minutes.
Instead, go for 10 minutes, and see how that feels. As you progress, you can start increasing the time from 10 minutes up to 15 and work your way slowly to a full-length session of 45 minutes. Also, remember that your body is not used to acupressure, and as such may give you some interesting feedback if you go too long on your first few sessions.
2. Use Your Feet – There are thousands of acupressure points on your body. However, there are also a ton of reflexology pressure points on the bottom of your feet. This may cause some discomfort if you are ticklish, but 10 to 15 minutes per day of using the neck pillow or your acupressure pad to stimulate the reflexology pressure points will have real benefits.
Some acupressure pads come with a reflexology map that allows you to pinpoint specific trouble areas. The way you do this is by either folding your mat so that a single Ridge of acupressure nodes is exposed, or by applying acupressure to the reflexology point manually.
3. It’s Not Just For Your Back – There are a lot of different ways that you can use an acupressure mat rather than just laying on it. By sitting on it in various positions, you can target specific pressure points in different parts of your body. For example, you can use the node to target your hips if you sit on the side of your ties and support your upper body with your arm. You can also target your calves, or any other part of your body essentially by folding the mat or curving it to accommodate the different sections. This means that you can reap the benefits of acupressure not just on your legs but also your entire body.
4. Use a Pillow – Your back and spine have a natural lumbar curve as well as a curve near the shoulders and neck. This means that it’s going to be difficult to achieve contact with the entire back at the same time. However, you can use a pillow to help. Use a regular pillow underneath the acupressure mat near your lower back to help lift it so that you get support and contact in your lumbar region.
If you’re trying to alleviate neck pain or a headache, then you want to get those acupressure points to the back of your neck. In those cases, use an acupressure neck pillow, or use a small bolster pillow underneath the mat to let the points do their work.
How Often Should You Use an Acupressure Mat?
o You should aim for one or two seconds per day when using your acupressure mat. Using it in the morning when you wake up can help energize and get you ready for your day. Likewise, using it after you get home from work or just before bed can help relax you and get you ready for a good night sleep.
How Long Should I Lay on An Acupressure Mat?
o If you’re just starting to use acupressure mats, you should use this mat sparingly, only for 10 to 15 minutes at a time, while sitting in a chair or reclining in a sofa. This will let you get used to the feeling of the acupressure points. And don’t forget to breathe. Taking slow and steady deep breaths while using an acupressure mat helps to accentuate the meditative aspect, and can help alleviate any initial discomfort.
Once you’ve adjusted to this, you can work your way up to 20 to 45 minutes. At this point, you should still be using your acupressure mat on your couch or a softer surface to continue to let your body acclimate to the sensation of the pressure. As an example, you may use your acupressure mat and lay on the couch while reading a book or watching your favorite television program. Before you know it, your allotted time will be up for the day.
If you are an advanced user, and you have been using the acupressure mat for a while, then place the mat directly on a hardwood floor and use the mat for periods up to 45 minutes. The hard surface of the floor will give you the maximum pressure that the mat can apply to your body. You really should not exceed 45 minutes in any case.
Is An Acupressure Mat Painful?
o When first starting out, some people find acupressure mats to be uncomfortable and even painful at first. This is because you are not used to the sensation of the acupressure points. However, after repeated usage, you will find that the sensation will change from a harsh prickly pain to a welcome massage like sensation.
An acupressure mat should never cause any puncture wounds, bleeding, or seepage when you use it. If it does, then you should stop using it immediately and consult your doctor.
Should You Wear Clothes While Using an Acupressure Mat?
o There are lots of people who say that you should let the acupressure points touch bare skin to get the largest benefit out of the treatment. However, if you’re just starting out, bare skin can be a little painful or annoying at first. If you find this to be the case, then wear a normal t-shirt at first, and work your way down to thinner workout clothing, until you’re ready to go with no shirt at all.
● Should an Acupressure Mat Be Used During Pregnancy?
o Acupressure in general should not be done while you’re pregnant. That is because there are specific pressure points that can actually cause you to go into labor. One of these is the Bladder 32 point. Otherwise known as the BL32 pressure point, and also called the Ciliao, this pressure point is located just above the intergluteal cleft. And there are at least five other pressure points that are thought to help induce labor as well. So if you are pregnant, don’t do acupressure and talk to your doctor.
Are There Any Other Times That You Shouldn’t Use Acupressure Mats?
o Absolutely. As with any other supplementary treatment that is part of a holistic health approach, you should always talk to your doctor before starting. That being said, if you suffer from any of these conditions, you should avoid acupressure treatments.
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Spinal Injury
- Bone Disease
- Varicose Veins
- Pregnancy (See Above)
- Heart Disease
Can Acupressure Mats Be Used for Cellulite Reduction?
o It is thought that acupressure actually can help with cellulite. It does this by helping to stretch and relax the connective tissue beneath the skin that has hardened. This increases the elasticity of the skin and helps to reduce cellulite’s dimpled appearance.
Acupressure is also known to promote increase blood circulation which helps to rejuvenate the skin as well. This increase in blood flow helps your skin get more nutrients and encourages the healthy turnover of old skin cells for new ones.
And another way that acupressure can help with cellulite is by stimulating lymph flow. Lymph is how your body removes most of the toxins from your bloodstream. Helping increase lymph drainage can actually reduce the fluid retention underneath the skin that helps to emphasize the appearance of cellulite.
Can You Use Acupressure to Help with Cancer Treatments?
o Acupressure treatments can help with nausea that is associated with chemotherapy. Additionally, acupressure helps to increase energy levels, help relieve pain, and reduce the stress associated with cancer treatments. There are several preliminary case studies that show acupressure’s effectiveness, but more studies are needed to confirm these studies.
Acupressure Mats Comparison Chart
|Nayoya||Release tension||Green and Silver||2 pounds||9 x 7 x 15 in||9|
|Ajna||Advanced Stress Reliever||Ocean Blue||3.2 pounds||16.9 x 13.4 x 6.3 in||9|
|Spoonk||Improve circulation||Magenta||1.7 pounds||27.5 x 1 x 16.5 in||8|
|ProsourceFit||Muscle Relaxation||Grey||1.54 pounds||16.5 x 8 x 9.5 in||9|
|Zen Guru||Stress Relief||Blue||1.7 pounds||26 x 17 x 1 in||9|
|DoSensePro||Relieve Sciatic Pains||Purple||2.3 pounds||N/A||9|
We hope that this acupressure mat buying guide has helped you find an acupressure mat that will be best for your given situation. Remember that as with anything that has to do with your body and medical health, consult your doctor before engaging in any activity. If you have any questions about acupressure and its benefits or one of our reviews, please don’t hesitate to let us know. We are always willing to listen and help in whatever way we can.