Are you afraid to raise your fees?
Like I said in my 16th Facebook Live video, there is so much fear around the topic of raising your fees.
Let me say this first before anything else, unless you deal with your underlying fear, and feelings of not being good enough, no matter how much you charge…it will never be enough. It is this underbelly that you must deal with to ever achieve success.
Is Self-Care Just Drama?
Self-care used to be considered hokey or unnecessary fluff. But recent statistics reveal that stress levels of about half of all Americans are getting worse instead of getting better.
Now, large companies, leaders, activists and volunteer organizations see the essential need and benefits of healthy habits and self-care is as necessary, as loving your children.
Obviously, self-care isn’t just melodrama. It is essential for maintaining wellness and self-love. In short, it will keep you healthy and sane.
We, at Up Your Salon Game, have taken it a step further by creating for you a 7- day challenge, and all the necessary support you need is in this downloadable Self-Care Survival Kit.
There are 8 areas of self-care in this guide adapted from habitsforwellbeing.com. We want to make sure that we will take on a holistic approach in the challenge that we have prepared for you. You can use these to jumpstart your self-care routine as you pursue holistic wellness.
What Does Self-Care Mean to You?
What I hope and dream for, is you discovering a new, and deeper relationship with yourself. What would that look like for you?
- more sleep
- showing gratitude
- more nature
- talking to a friend more regularly
- wearing your mask
- time with your husband
- uninterrupted with your child
- being more honest with yourself
- cleaning out one closet
- eating less
- eating more
- taking a lunch
- buying less
- start that meditation practice
- more time with yourself
- prepare your meals
- to name a few.
Completing this challenge means taking your own health and well-being into your own hands.
The 7-day Challenge
Day 1: Physical Self-Care
Eating habits in salon back rooms can be pretty scary. Indulgence comes to mind. It’s like a bunch of vultures whenever food comes out. People stealing each other’s food, eating whatever is quick and easy, or spending money on lunches that leave us feeling bad, because we just blew our budget for meals.
Mindset reset. How you eat can set the tone for your day, and your life?
This is where nurturing yourself has to take priority, if you don’t want health issues down the road.
Eating fresh food can feel like a luxury, particularly in some parts of the country where fresh is not readily available. Choose organic with thin-skinned veggies and fruits, if you can.
When grocery shopping, avoid the middle aisles. These aisles are mostly filled with additive filled foods that do us little good.
Add these enriching oils to your diet:
- olive oil
- avocado oil
- pumpkin seed oil
- flaxseed oil
- Coconut oil for high heat cooking and use with food that benefit from the flavor
Add whole grains to your diet, soaking beans and grains with a couple of tablespoons of vinegar first
Choosing nuts, veggies, hummus, hard boiled egg, veggie smoothie from home, for snacks during the day if you need energy
Lessen your sugar intake. If you do have a sweet tooth, have a piece of dark chocolate, or bake something from home. Fresh is always better
Enjoy nurturing yourself and see what a difference it makes to actually support your health while in the salon.
Day 2: Psychological Self-Care
Okay, take five minutes today and sit with yourself.
Each day, take five more. Keep adding time, until you are up to 30 minutes.
feet on the ground
palms down on your lap
rest your eyes in front of you, or close them
relax your jaw
Now, place your attention on your breath, particularly the out breath.
Whenever your mind gets busy with thoughts, simply say the word to yourself, “Thinking”, and bring your attention back to the out breath.
Meditation practice not only supports your health and well-being, but helps:
- reduce stress
- gain new perspective
- build stress management skills
- help you in the salon with stressful situations
- focus on the present
- increase imagination and creativity
- sleep better
- increase patience
- become more self-aware
- decrease negative emotions
I hope you can see there is everything to gain from sitting…
Day 3: Spiritual Self-Care
Being in nature is another way for us to connect to ourselves, and offers a chance to realign our mind and body. Walking in it, allows for our head to clear the clutter. We get in touch with our heart, our breath, and our bodies.
Everything moves so fast in this world, the need to ground our bodies is crucial to our being able to be present in our lives.
Feel the wind on your face
Feel the dampness on your skin
Smell the dry earth
Listen to all that is going on when you are out there
Let your senses come to life, and bring that to your next consultation.
Enjoy your day!
Day 4: Social Self-Care
Our mental health, particularly as we move into this third spike in the pandemic, is to be nurtured. The need for connection with family and friends is key to our well-being.
We need to remember voicing our concerns, questions, and fears, and calling attention to the grief and sorrow is SO important and needed.
This is self-care.
Zoom with a good friend.
Call a friend.
Write a letter to a friend or family member.
Remember, our kids are watching. Show them what self-care looks like.
Day 5: Financial Self-Care
That is right. Place a moratorium on your shopping for a week. Nothing. Zero.
How many people do you know that spend, spend, spend on expensive clothes, and shoes? Their closets filled, and yet their hearts ache for something deeper. They just can’t get enough to fill the empty space.
The empty space is where the richness lays. Do we dare to feel whatever is there?
This is self-care.
Day 6: Environmental Care
Years ago I mentioned taking a digital detox, and now, it even seems more important.
Our devices can very easily take over our lives in the guise of saving time. But in actuality, adults are spending 10-12 hours a day on their devices! Yikes. And we are setting an example for our kids?
So much screen time can add to:
Depression and anxiety
Chronic back neck pain
Shutting down an hour before bed allows us to slow our minds down and rest our eyes.
Keep screens away from where you eat and sleep.
Time away from our screens allows us to get back in touch with the humans in our lives.
Pick up a book instead. How rare it is to even see a book in someone’s hand? Who knows you may even get through the stack of best sellers near your bed at some point?
Sundays are great days to enjoy a digital detox.
Day 7: Professional Self- Care
Mondays are great days to take a mental or written inventory of where you are in your business.
As you relax today, think about your salon life to figure out where you sell yourself short. Do you undermine your fellow stylists, your manager, the owner, your clients, and most importantly– yourself?
Three points for you to consider here.
- Boundaries are absolutely necessary. They act as your bumper rails as you are out in your salons, they help guide you, and mold your clientele. The stronger and clearer you are, the more people can support you, and your values. Your values will actually be more evident without you even speaking about them if your boundaries are clear.
- Your conversations in the chair ought to be about the client. Be mindful of topics you bring up. Let them lead. Inform yourself about the world
- Communication- clean, honest, no blame. Learn to communicate from the I position rather than You, which inevitably makes people defensive. Always ask your clients permission to take a photo, and you better have a photo release signed and filed when you post on social media
How Are You Creating Balance in the Midst of a Pandemic?
With so much unpredictability, it is understandable that our balance in life and work may feel off kilter. Creating life-work balance in the midst of a pandemic may seem like a tale from the Disney Channel or something.
We may feel edgier, snapping at our loved ones or short with cautious clients. But the truth is, we really have no control over the situation as a whole. Our best attempts at keeping calm may completely disappear at times, especially if you feel your bottom line continues to be affected by this pandemic.
A Taste of Balance
Some of what keeps us moving forward, is reaching for balance; because it really is the natural order of things. Life got real simple during the shelter in place orders. With reduced schedules, you may have more time on your hands.
This was a radical change for most of us. You may have found your natural rhythm again. Maybe more cooking instead of fast food, more time with your families and/or pets, and walks or yoga. We got a taste of what it felt like to not have work be the focus of our lives, and to live more simply. We got more of our life back.It’s not to say that this was easy. Au contraire. It was stressful, hard, scary, and humbling. How we emerge from this time is very powerful. Can we retain some of the feeling of wrapping our work around our life, instead of the other way around?
Your Sphere of Control
Due to circumstances out of our control– cut hours, no double booking, etc., we can only focus on what we do have control over. That is– our actions and our words.Your actions, how you hold this precarious situation, and how you speak about it. These are the pathways to discovering balance.Yes, words matter. There is power in words. How do you speak about things? Listen to yourself. Do you like what you are saying? This is not the time to throw caution to the wind, and it is also not a time to be so constricted, that joy has little room to blossom.
Two Foundational Truths
So how do we create balance? I talk about life-work balance with so much passion because I believe it is more than essential. Over 3 decades as a salon professional, I found it to be the main ingredient in keeping you from going over the edge or getting totally burned out. Here are 2 foundational truths in achieving balance, keep you grounded and thrive in our demanding industry.
1. Setting Boundaries Around Your Talent and Gift
No kidding. It took me a long time to figure out that saying YES to every date, client, friend or family was not the quickest way to achieving some level of stability in my life. About ten years in, I realized I didn’t want to cut hair at every family gathering. So, I stopped bringing my scissors home every trip.
Yes, it feels good to offer a gift of a haircut when you haven’t seen people for a while. You want to do something to keep yourself busy when Uncle Billy starts drinking too much, or your brother and you start talking politics. Having something to do can keep you out of trouble, in other words.
However, if you find now that it is expected every time you visit, and resentment is building up, perhaps it’s time to leave the scissors behind, and begin saying no.
2. Remembering Your “WHY”
Although you may be passionate about cutting hair, it’s important to schedule time to explore other parts of your life.
Remembering WHY you cut hair, beyond the money, beyond recognition, allows you to go deeper. Is it to provide for your family? To afford a certain lifestyle? Is it to employ others, and enable them to make a living? Is the “Why” about sharing your creativity?
All these questions invite you to go deeper. Allow this underlying through line in your career to give you balance, nothing to prove, just quietly going about your business.
What about the different aspects of your life that offer other ways that are needed to feed your emotional and spiritual life?
Saying NO to the last client so that you may take that violin lesson, watch your kids’ soccer game, learn a language, or a date with your companion, husband or wife.
This is balance– getting to a place that you can wrap your work around your priorities and the vision for your life. Maybe it means you do with a little less of a paycheck to do so. These are the moments we will remember.
At the end of the day, our job as salon professionals is an exchange for money. No more, no less.
If you are passionate about your hairstyling career, you are lucky. Passion is awesome, but it doesn’t mean you have to work 24/7. That’s old school. Trust this passion and have work wrap around your life. Not the other way around.
I know for myself, I find that I am reluctant to go back full on in my studio, I sometimes go in a little later, and end a little earlier. This is what I find works for my family life.
I mark spaces out in my calendar ahead of time to create some cushion. I can always fill the slot with a client. I like knowing that I have these windows of time available. I am protecting my time with more awareness.
How about you? How do you maintain your balance?