When I was learning to cut hair I was told you had to follow your guide. This perplexed me. I took such a simple concept and made it into something so much more complicated than it was and thus, I never learned to cut hair, so I colored it instead.
I never really liked coloring hair. I mean it was fun to paint; it appealed to the little kid in me. But the whole chemistry part did not. People don’t understand how complicated it really is and well, all you have to do is look around and you will see a lot of really bad color! You see a lot of bad hair cuts too!
When you make your first cut in the hair, it serves as the foundation for the entire cut. That’s right! That first snip. The next time you get your haircut you will notice how they go around your head. You’re probably reading a paper or chatting it up and don’t even notice the rhythm they are making.
You can tell when someone doesn’t follow their guide because they get lost in the cut. This is when they give you a cut but it feels off balance the minute you leave the shop. You just know when you get a good cut and when you don’t.
Life and a good haircut are pretty much the same. When we follow the proper guide we get good results. If we follow the wrong guide, we get lost. We might take advice from people who seem well-meaning, but we find ourselves getting further and further away from our vision.
Most of the guides in our life have been there since birth. We might pick up a few new ones along the way, but if we have not done any inner work, they will still resemble our past and what we have grown accustomed to. Pretty much like a stylist who cuts hair the same way, without giving any thought to who is in their chair.
Not all hair is the same. Nor are all people. You can’t give someone with super fine hair a layered cut. And you can’t give someone who is sensitive your usual way of non empathy if you expect to get good results with them.
Like a bad haircut where the stylist loses their guide, sometimes we lose our way in life because we follow the wrong advice and sometimes what we want to hear and what we need to hear are very different. We get used to our old ways of doing things and aren’t too keen to learn new ones.
We can always choose to work on ourselves if we don’t like where we are, just as a stylist can take new classes to enhance their skills. Maybe they learn to use a razor or clippers and learn a traveling guide instead of a stationery one. Maybe they even throw some over-direction in the mix and the next thing you know they’re creating a whole new style for themselves. The same can be done for you.
What guide are you currently following? Is it someone who supports you and your choices? Someone who embraces all of you instead of only part? Is it someone you respect? Is it someone who inspires you? Someone who loves you without conditions? Because if you are following one of those guides, then you should wind up with a terrific style. If not, then you’ll be that person who is always looking for someone else to fix them.
When I worked in salons there was always that one client who had seen everybody. No matter what anybody did, they were never happy. Whether it was a good cut or a bad one, they still complained. I never gave it much thought as to why they did, but now I realize they were just following their guide; someone who had done this way before them.
Junior’s guide was his mama. She told him to take his time and don’t rush to get old. Mine told me to wear a white t-shirt so I wouldn’t get burned and never put anyone down until I put myself in their shoes first.
Some guides give you advice that works and others don’t. If you want a balanced life or a balanced haircut, you gotta follow the right guide. Who is yours?