Beauty, communication, Hair Care, health and wellness, parenting, That girl in the red coat, Uncategorized, Women, writing

Breathe

breathe – (verb) – to take air, oxygen into the lungs and expel it; inhale and exhale; respire. – to pause, as for breath; take rest.

Breathing. Something we do everyday. We inhale. We exhale. … but what about that pause and take rest part? From what I am seeing and hearing everyday, many of us, including yours truly, remember to breathe in and out but forget about pausing, and taking rest.

The shop opened at 9:30 a.m.. By 10 a.m. I had 6 phone calls, all of which were women looking for a certain product and before I could answer their questions all of them were either panicking, yelling at their kids in the background or speaking over me and telling me;

– why they couldn’t get in today because they had to get their kids to camp, the groceries, the dentist appointments…you name it.

– why they didn’t come by on the weekend – too busy, too much to do.

– that they were too busy to call any other time – too busy, too many other calls to make.

– that their family was over for a vacation and they had been too busy taking care of everyone else and forgot about their hairspray

– that they were too stupid to notice they were out of shampoo – yes…a woman with a shaky voice actually said those words to me.

My rep. was in the shop as all these calls were coming in. In between each ring of the phone, I would put my hand up, tell my rep.”Excuse me for a minute” and take a deep breath, in and out, and would tell myself, “Breathe Sara…it’s not about you.”. – a hard learned lesson for yours truly. Learning that it is not all about you may be the hardest lesson to learn – with the greatest reward. This past week was a hard one. Not going to get into the details for it is not all about me. I thought I was present, thought I was hearing what was being said, thought I had removed my head from my ass, seems I hadn’t. It is safe to say that it is now completely removed, and I learned a hard lesson – I may have been listening to those around me, but I wasn’t hearing them. I was too busy thinking of the next task at hand, or what my opinion was about what they were saying. I wasn’t completely present. I wasn’t taking a moment to pause.

“…the world went and got itself in a big damn hurry.” – Brooks Hatlen, The Shawshank Redemption. I am not sure when it happened,  all of a sudden every moment became so dire. Everyday I meet women who are in a hurry. In a panic. I can’t tell you how many times their purchases, their keys or their kids are left at the front desk, or how many times I see;

– Sighing at the debit machine because it is too slow.

– Yelling at their child because they want to take a moment and look at the pretty nail polishes.

– Almost yanking their child’s arm out of it’s socket because they stopped to look at the candies in the candy dish and asked if they could please have one.

– Their lip starting to tremble as they are texting with one hand and entering their PIN with the other.

– Watching their worry about getting home in time for their favorite T.V. show.

– Demanding I tell them why their favorite product was discontinued and told “I don’t know why you are doing this to me! What am I going to do?”.

Ladies and gents…it’s time to take a breath. It’s time to take a moment to pause, to rest.

– When the debit machine is slow, take it as permission to take a little break in your day.

– When your child is looking at the pretty nail polishes, look with them. Ask them what they think is the prettiest color.

– When your child spies a candy dish and asks politely if they may have one – do not yank their little arm. Thank them for using their manners.

– When paying for a purchase, put down your phone. If the call cannot wait, ask the cashier if you could have a moment. Trying to do these two things at once, in my experience, in front of the counter and behind it…it never ends well.

– Worried about missing the next episode of The Real Housewives of where ever? – that is what on demand, PVR and Netflix is for.

– We all feel cheated when our favorite products are discontinued. Try to remember that stylists and sales people are only the messenger’s. Tell us what you liked about your beloved product and we may be able to find you a suitable replacement. … and trust me, it may feel personal – the company did not discontinue the product to ruin your life. They didn’t.

Take a breath. Take rest. Pay attention to those around you. Pay attention to your surroundings. Set your PVR and take a look at the pretty polishes. Take the time to really listen…it’s amazing what you will hear.

 

 

Beauty, Business, communication, Fashion, Hair Care, health and wellness, Uncategorized, Women, writing

How do you look?

So it has been over a week since my last tale. I could come up with every excuse in the book, the truth is I didn’t make myself a priority. As you know, I am a wife to a wonderful man and a mother to a glorious 16 year old young woman. Calm down ladies…I know I am not the only “career” mother out there…this is not a competition nor an episode of “The real housewives”…it is just a tale for today. Now, back to the tale at hand. As you also know I am the manager of a salon/retail shop. Everyday I make sure my hair is coiffed just so and my makeup applied and my pants pressed, and I look good. Yeah, I said it. What I came to realize this past week is I may have looked good on the outside…but my inside left a little to be desired.Not to sound all “Oprah”, I had given away my power. As last week progressed I could see that I wasn’t the only one.

I had a few customers that were, let say, interesting. One woman was being quite abrupt with her answers to my questions about what kind of hold she wanted from her hairspray. So, being me, I asked her if there was something I had done to upset her. She stared in silence. After about 10 seconds she said “I am sorry, I just got this new cut that I didn’t want. My stylist said I was to old for a bob and that I needed a short style.”. (I get severely pissed when I hear this, and I hear this often. Yo Stylists! Who are you to tell people that they are too old for a cut? Seriously…get a grip and become a professional). So, I assured her the cut was cute (which it was) and sold her some KMS Hair Play Molding Paste for some funky styling and she likes her hair to look shiny so we added some SOMA Prism shine spray to the mix…and I also gave her our Salon price list.

I had a customer this week that introduced herself as “stupid and useless”. I shit you not, that is what she answered when I asked “How ya doin’ today”. You see, she was trying to grow out her hair for her daughter’s wedding in the fall and gave up because she listened to the wrong people – the people who told her that a flat iron was “too complicated” for her. (Who the hell are these people?!?). I took her over to our flat iron demo display and told her to pick one up as I picked one up. We both were in the mirror’s reflection, so I told her to copy what I was doing. After about 30 seconds a smile crept across her face and she said “I can grow out my hair!”. I looked her straight in the eye and told her to stop listening to the “Can’t” people in her life and listen for the “Can” people…they are out there. They are a little harder to hear over the annoying antics of the “can’t” court jesters.

A woman has lost some weight. She has lost 22 pounds over the course of 8 months. She began to exercise. She began to eat a healthy diet in support of her husband’s health issues. She didn’t lose the weight to “show off” or “rekindle her twenties” or “to keep her marriage alive” or because she was having a “cougar crisis”. The weight loss was a positive perk of embracing a healthier lifestyle, for her family and herself. That woman is me, and yes, the above comments have been directed at me. 10 years ago, I would have listened to the nasty comments and gone and ate a cake…or two. Guess what buttercup…not anymore. I have come to realize that those who are negative, nasty or assholes – take your pick, are empty inside…plain and simple. They are so miserable that they have to pull you down to their level so no one will see how crappy their lives are. Funny thing is, they cannot even fathom the idea that no one really gives a shit, except them and others like them.

I know I say it all the time, but I was raised on Little House on the Prairie and Happy Days so get used to it. BE KIND. Raise others up, do not push them down. Your BFF gets a new cut and loves it? Love it with her. A friend is struggling with her hatred of her thighs? Go to the gym with her – don’t agree and tell her she “really needs to work on that”. A friend loses weight? Applaud her efforts and ask her how she did it. Do not  mock her and ask her “cutting out the calories trying to be a cougar?”.

“If you don’t look good, we don’t look good”. – Mr. Vidal Sassoon