We had the good fortune of connecting with Niki Diggs and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Niki, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
When I first started my business 7 years ago, I lived to work. A proud member of team no days off, I was always attached to my phone- to make sure I didn’t miss a call or an email from a potential client. I worked constantly, and didn’t give myself a lot of downtime. Years later, my priorities have shifted. I want to work to live instead. Prioritize my friends, family, mental and physical health as much, if not more than my work. I’m proud of what I do, and how I can help people. That being said, I can’t give them my best without taking care of myself as well. Now I’m better at giving myself time off, putting my phone on do not disturb when I’m away from work, and giving quality attention to priorities away from my work. I realized when I started doing this, I actually fell back in love with my work again as well. I believe people in our lives should know their importance- that includes myself.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I started my business after a big life change fell through. I had planned to move across the country, and it didn’t work out. I was left without a job, and little options. I felt like I had nothing to lose- which was incredibly naive, of course. I had the ability to bridge traditional ideas of massage with my strong kinesiology background. A marriage of traditional Chinese and Swedish styles of massage along with sports medicine. Quite the combo, if you ask me. I’m proud of the fact it’s just lil’ old me- the “little engine that could” chugging away, figuring out by doing things right, and wrong to start my business. I’m a black queer female, who wanted to be allowed and accepted in spaces that traditionally didn’t have room for me. It wasn’t easy in the slightest- I was incredibly poor for a long time. With the Corona Virus, I almost lost it all again- but I’m still here, working and even thriving. You get me- my empathy, compassion, knowledge and care when you work with me. I want the best for you, and will give all I can to give you the best massage experience. You also get to enjoy my quirky personality in between.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
San Diego is an incredible town, with something for everyone. From Balboa Park to the San Diego Zoo, to all our beautiful beaches. An unending amount of cute little coffee shops, hole in the wall bars, and every kind of cuisine- some of my favorite areas being North park or Hillcrest. Petco Park for a baseball game, downtown to experience the Gaslamp District. When I’m wanting some beautiful views and peace, maybe Sunset cliffs or La Jolla shores.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My shoutout goes to my family. This includes not only blood relatives, but to the friends who have been the mirrors I couldn’t avoid. You’ve kept me grounded, while encouraging my dreams. Dusted me off when I fell down, and loved me as I’m built. All while I strive to be the best version of myself I can be. Perfectly imperfect.
Mariana Monasi Photography