We had the good fortune of connecting with Kara Ford and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kara, other than deciding to work for yourself, what else do you think played a pivotal role in your story?
The most important decision I have made in contribution to my own success is taking the knowledge and care I give to my clients, and implementing it into my own life. In my own experience, the balancing act of life can be extremely challenging. Making self-care part of my daily priorities has ensured that what I put out into the world comes from my overflow tank, and not my reserve.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Upward Light Healing was conceived out of tragedy. My children’s half-brother, Edward died by suicide in early 2019. I felt that gifting my time and energy work to everyone that loved Edward was needed more than ever. The amount of love, healing, and connections that came out of those sessions were utterly amazing. So, after twenty-plus years of running my successful massage therapy practice, leasing a small space in existing businesses, I realized I needed to expand and open my own establishment to be able to help teach the importance of self-love and self-care, and give others the tools to grow their own Light of Love from within. On the one-year anniversary of Edward’s death, I received my LLC and in March of 2020 and opened Upward Light Healing in Downtown Mesa. There have been many challenges in the last eighteen months, as the Covid-19 shutdown occurred 2 weeks after we opened our doors. But thankfully we had plenty of support and resources from the local community to be able to grow and bloom. Currently, Upward Light Healing offers massage therapy, intuitive healing, and cranial unwinding services. But I am super excited to announce we are in the process of remodeling an additional 1,700 square feet next door and will be expanding our services to offer yoga, dance, meditation, and community classes this fall.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I was born and raised in Arizona so I have plenty of places I would love to share with my “bestie” visiting from out of town. We can work up an appetite searching for the perfect treasures in the vintage and antique shops in Downtown Mesa. Then head over to Worth Takeaway Sandwich Shop for a quick yet delicious bite or for a more relaxing dining experience or the always delectable Il Vinaio. A night out at The Rhythm Room dancing to my favorite local band, The Sugar Thieves is always a rocking fun time. I also would not miss the chance to share my happy place, The Lower Salt River. An early morning kayaking trip is the best time to catch a glimpse of the river otters or wild horses. An evening dip in the water with a view of the sunset is also fantastic!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
The first three people that come to mind who deserve a Shoutout are Darlene Massey, Marsha Craven, and Hannah Frost. Darlene Massey, my mom, because she was the epitome of love during her life. Her examples of how to love, give service, and care for others shaped the foundation of where I firmly standing today. Marsha Craven, my favorite energy work/healing arts educator, She taught me to always take what I learn and “make it my own”. Applying Marsha’s piece of advice has made me realize that making my own mold instead of just fitting into someone else’s, helps me professionally stand out above the norm. Hannah Frost, managing operator of Summit Physical Therapy Az and friend. Throughout the years her physical therapy expertise has helped to keep my body going strong, and more recently, for cheering me on with words of encouragement and praise during the highs and lows of opening my business. I honor and appreciate these beautiful women for who they are and how they have inspired me to become who I am today.
RaySquared Productions Kristine Marie Photography