In my last post I talked about new years resolutions and how that subject lead me to setting business goals for myself. With all of the contemplating I was doing with my business goals I decided I wanted to implement the same strategies into my personal life and set some goals for myself as well. As I sat down to write out these personal goals I really started to wrestle with the word GOAL. The goals that I was setting for myself didn’t really feel like goals so much, but more like lifestyle changes or things that I wanted to start incorporating into my daily life in order to grow as a person.
The problem with the word goal, in my opinion, is that goals have an endpoint, they have a due date if you will and that endpoint becomes the subject that we focus on. Don’t get me wrong, goals are great for setting direction for your life but I believe its more about the actions we take to achieve our goals that are important. When we set a goal we create small habits throughout our day to help achieve that goal. This is called an outcome based habit, a habit that we create purely based on the outcome we want to achieve. Once we reach our goal those habits usually fall by the wayside because we were focusing only on the endpoint of the goal.
I'm a little late to the game with today's topic, but better late than never! Being a deep thinker and needing time to reflect means better and more thorough information!!! So, lets get to it, today I want to talk about a question that I've been asked at the salon for many years. This year I was surprised because only one of my clients asked me this question. Usually it’s a hot topic in the month of January and I'm sure you've heard it as well, actually I'm sure you've asked yourself this question. The question is, do you set new years resolutions, if so what are your resolutions? It took me a minute to respond because I was trying to remember if I had even thought about setting a resolution this year. I realized I hadn't thought about it until that moment so I gave my typical response. "No" I said, "I'm not the type of person that normally sets a resolution. I set goals throughout the year and I revise those goals as needed."
We went on to discuss his resolutions or goals for the year and the conversation drifted into a new subject. However, that wasn’t the end of the discussion in my head. Later that night when I was at home settling into bed I thought about my response and realized it was a bullshit answer, the same answer I have been giving people for many years. I gave him an answer that projected I was spending time developing strategies for improvement, tracking and measuring goals, and adjusting those strategies and goals as the year progressed. I wanted to sound like I was a professional business women that had everything planned out. When the reality is I've been avoiding setting and tracking goals for years .Well I sort of set goals in my own way, I just make lists of things I want to do in my head. At least I had the thought and I might actually do it so that’s a goal…right? Here's an example of what this kind 'goal setting' looks like.
This year I'm determined to create healthier habits in all areas of my life! Eating, working out, writing, goal setting, budget tracking, income tracking and everything in between! I want to be consistent and make this part of my routine for the rest of my life! No more rollercoaster rides of just playing it by ear and seeing if I follow through or hit my goal on a whim without a plan. I've been following that plan for years and the same thing keeps happening, NOTHING! I have no idea what's improving and what's getting worse because I don’t keep track of anything!!! I just keep setting goals in my head and I eventually get sidetracked or start new projects and the original goals get put on the back burner until next year, when the same things happen all over again.
What I realized when I started out on this journey is that the reason I wasn’t being intentional with my plan was FEAR! I'm afraid of what other people think of me, what I think of myself and just of failure in general. So I've always chosen to be ignorant by not tracking or setting real goals in order to avoid the possibility that I would fail to meet those goals or that I would expose all of my flaws by doing so. I'm really hard on myself and it seemed by staying in the dark about what I was or wasn’t accomplishing; I was protecting myself from even more self shame and guilt. Being in therapy has helped me recognize this negative cycle, the need for perfectionism, eventually guilt of not accomplishing anything and then shaming myself. It’s a wicked cycle and I'm finally ready to take some action towards a more productive and positive system.
As you know, my hair color is a little unorthodox. I often forget because I see it everyday. However when I'm out and about I get reminded that it's a rare color and eventually the fact that I'm a hairstylist gets brought up. I was recently at a wedding and I found myself surrounded by a group of women asking me all sorts of questions about their hair. What do you think of this color? I just added more blonde? I'm worried its too light for my skin tone, does it wash me out? And so on goes the conversation. This doesn’t just happen with random strangers but friends and acquaintances as well. It all starts with a simple compliment and the next thing I know I've spent a half hour educating and reassuring these women that yes we (me and whomever their stylist is) are professionals and that although they may not fully understand why their stylist makes the decisions they do, I'm sure they have good reasons.
I try my best to support and uplift all of my fellow stylists and I think it's very important to do. I walked away from the conversation wondering if these women were asking their stylist all the same questions! I had to ask myself what can I take away from these talks? Do my clients ask random hair stylists for their advice? Are they questioning if I'm making the best decisions for them? I immediately went to the salon and starting asking my own guests questions based on the conversations I'd had over the weekend. They reassured me that they weren't going around asking the kinds of questions I was getting. They explained that one of the reasons they choose me as a stylist is because I do a thorough job of educating them what and why I choose to do what I do for their hair. They completely trust my advice and vision because of this. They also aren't afraid to speak up and ask questions.
Based on these conversations I figured it was time to share some insight as to how you as a guest can take control of your hair appointment. Knowing how to relay your needs and desires is the most important part of getting what you want when it comes to your haircut, color and style. Here are 4 steps to identifying what you want out of your hairstyle and how to express that to your stylist!
I'm not sure if it's been the transition from 'fall' to winter, or the clocks getting pushed back but I've been completely lacking in the motivation and creativity department. Things have been busy and booming behind the chair but I haven't had much energy or ambition outside of my work and creativity at the salon. I can tell that I'm not the only one feeling this way as my coworkers, clients, family and friends have been expressing that they have been feeling a little down as well. We all just chalk it up to the shorter days of winter and colder weather.
Monday is my most important day, it sets the tone and attitude for the week to come. I have the day off at the salon but this doesn’t mean I'm lounging around catching up on Netflix. My mornings are used to prepare mentally for the week ahead, I set personal and professional goals for the week, start writing my blog, prep most of my Instagram feed and story posts and do all of my usual morning routine, work out , meditate, read and so on. Then its time to hit the road for salon supplies, groceries, and then back home for meal prep, laundry, cleaning and all of the other necessary things that I just love doing! (She says sarcastically)
Week one of my down mood I made up excuses for why I wasn’t doing any of the things I listed above, I kept telling myself, I needed a break and that I deserved it. I don’t know about you but when I'm stuck in one of these down times I can find excuses for everything! I also get super emotional and even the smallest situation like stubbing my toe seems to get magnified. I found myself crying about things I would normally laugh at, getting offended when I would normally try to rationalize, getting angry at the slightest setback and feeling insecure when I would normally recognize my strengths. My relationships were suffering and I was on edge about everything. My excitement to go to work was lacking and I was feeling completely drained half way through my day at the salon. I was eating out or not eating at all and coming home to go straight to bed. It's like my universe was turned upside down and I was walking on the ceiling. I work very hard everyday to try and look for the positive and keep my mind in self love mode! It’s a constant battle with my brain to look for opportunities for learning and understanding instead of self loathing, when it comes to a negative interaction, experience, or situation. Although this takes work its so much better than the alternative! Living in the negative even for a little while is very wearing, as I'm sure most of you can relate it starts to consume you and everything around you, which only leads to more negativity.
After week one of allowing myself to sit in the negative I started to identify what I DIDN'T want and by doing that I had some revelations. I was able to take the down and negative feelings and thoughts that I was having and learn from them what I DO want. It's ok to recognize negativity as long as we are doing it briefly. I'm not suggesting that you sit and repeat all of the negative things or thoughts that you have been experiencing, that is called shaming and it's the exact opposite of what is recommended in this situation. However being able to identify what we don’t want can give us clarity as to what we DO want! We need to stop the cycle of negativity when we find ourselves getting stuck on the hamster wheel and reinforcing negative self talk. I know from experience that this is easier said than done but here's what helps me challenge my negative thoughts in hopes to help my mind get off that damn hamster wheel.
I've been a hairstylist for over 12 years, throughout those 12 years I've worn many hats. I started out as an assistant making minimum wage, tips if I was lucky. I'm a fast learner, it took me three months to realize I was ready to take control of my own guests, and their experiences. I wanted to start making decisions for myself. I tested out of the assistant program and I was on the floor working mostly Saturdays, albeit competing for clients with 6 other girls that were fresh out of the program as well. Being on the floor meant I was off minimum wage and working for commission and tips. I learned quickly that competition is not how I wanted to build my clientele. I wanted a guest to choose me and I didn’t want to work for a company that promotes selfishness and negative competition.
I was off to my next salon, another commission based salon, but much smaller. This was another learning experience for me as the salon had only been open for a year and the owner was an investor that had never owned, managed or even really been to a salon before. He was bald, ha-ha! I actually never met him or spoke to him. Lack of vision and of strong leadership meant I was gone after 6 months.
At this point I've been in the industry less than 2 years and was starting to lose faith. Was this the reality of the hair industry? What was I doing wrong? I refused to give up! My next stop was a corporate salon with over 1,000 stores across the nation. The promise of education, clients, and a way to move up the ladder sounded like a place with a vision that fit my own. The first year was great! We had technical education every couple of months, I learned how to budget and set goals for myself, I even achieved multiple goals during that year and I was starting to build my clientele.
Things were moving along, I thought this was exactly what I wanted when I started. What I didn't realize was that just because a company makes over 3 billion dollars a year doesn’t necessarily mean they have good visionary leadership, actually it was the exact opposite. My manager did the bare minimum to reach her quotas and nothing beyond that. In fact, she handed off most of her duties to us stylists because she was too busy standing behind the chair to actually do her job as manager and be an effective leader. After four years of being overworked, under paid, and what I felt was under appreciated I was on the search again.
I learned some very important lessons in the first 5 years of my career. I thought that there were three constants no matter where I was working; a perceived lack of leadership, my desire to be lead, and of course, me. What I didn’t realize at the time, due mostly to a lack of life experience, is that all of the situations I just mentioned were actually opportunities staring me in the face. A study done by the Dale Carnegie Leadership Organization revealed that 75% of workers who voluntarily left their jobs did so because of their bosses. Lack of leadership is the reason we leave an organization, people don’t quit jobs, they tend to quit bosses. What that study doesn’t speak to is how many of those who left, and said they did so because of their boss, tried to also make things better by taking some initiative and leading from within.
What we often fail to realize, especially in the salon business, is that salons don’t create themselves. They are created by somebody who, at least at one time, had a vision, or at least a dream. The salon is birthed out of a desire to create something closer to their vision of what could be. The salon is then filled with other humans with their own dreams, goals, desires, and needs. With time, all of the hats being worn by the owner, boss, manager, and leader tend to change and the need for help carrying the load and developing the vision is ever present.
What I've realized now, after 12 years of experience is that the only common denominator in these scenarios was me. I realized that I had the power to lead myself, the cold hard truth is it's time to look within yourself for motivation and leadership. Are you doing anything to give support to your leader? Add value to the salon and other stylists? By simply changing the way you choose to see a situation you determine the opportunities that open up for you. What I perceived as lack of management was actually a great opportunity for me to step up my game. It's much easier to blame outside circumstances and others for our own inability to take initiative, however, nothing outside of you determines your success! It's up to you to decide if we want to stay in bed where its warm and comfortable or take the risk and step out into the cold. I know it can be scary but one small step could be the difference between disappointment and a whole new world of opportunities for success. Enough about theory, here are the steps I recommend to start taking control of your future!
Now that you're up to date on the cuts and colors of the season it's time to talk style. I'm an advocate of enhancing your natural beauty and natural hair seems to be the trend this season, well the illusion of natural hair that is! It's all about embracing your hair texture and running with it.
It’s time to start rocking those natural curls and use that texture to your advantage. It's as easy as throwing in some mousse and using a diffuser to entice the curl. If you have specific areas that just don’t want to curl or need a little lift, use a curling iron (with a similar size barrel to your own curl pattern) to enhance the curl. Embracing my curls was the best thing I have ever done with my hair, it's less time consuming and my hair has never been healthier!
There's no more denying it, fall is here! I absolutely love the changing of the seasons, fall is by far one of my favorites. After a long hot summer it's time for some hair rehab and maintenance. I'm super excited about what this seasons haircuts have in store for us. Things are getting slightly revamped so keep an open mind about your length and trying something new!
This season is all about the bobs and bangs! If you want to switch up your look without the commitment of cutting off your length a bang can completely transform your style. Right now there are two ways to go, baby bangs or curtain bangs. Both of these can be tweaked to fit your specific style and hair type.
If you’re anything like me you have been spending some serious time on Pinterest checking out the latest fall fashion trends. I love browsing through the photos and getting inspiration for the new season. I know most of you look to Pinterest for hair inspiration as well. As a professional stylist I have access to exclusive websites, hair shows, and training, giving me a leg up on the current cuts, colors, and styles.
After years of going to hair shows and researching to keep up with the latest and greatest in hair, I have realized that although very interesting and exciting, some of these new trends and styles are meant to stay on the runway and platform stage! This means that the cuts, colors and styles don’t always transfer to your everyday life, trends are amazing and inspiring but its my goal to take these trends and transform them for you in a way that is practical for your life.
Have you ever had an idea in your head that you couldn’t complete on your own? This happens to me all the time, but this particular situation was very revealing for me! I was trying to figure out a way to introduce myself to the blogging world and also open up about why I really do what I do and I just couldn’t quite answer the question on my own. I first asked myself this question in mid July… It's now September and I think I have the answer! The answer came to me in the best way possible…when a client asked me the very question I had been trying to answer myself!
Hi, I'm Jolene, I started my career in the hair industry over 12 years ago. I have learned a lot along the way, not just about being a hairstylist but about life. I'll keep you up to date on the latest hair color and cut trends of the season, educate you on all different kinds of hair products, styling tools, and everything life!