Oooooh! Guys, it gets personal today!
Today’s Comment of the Week comes from Kelly I in reply to My First Gray Hair:
I’ve been following your blog for a while. I myself am thinking of enrolling in Cosmetology school within the next month, but just was curious how you were when you were going into it? Did you have a lot of knowledge already, or did school truly prepare you for working in the industry? I’m nervous and have this fear that I’m going to be done with it and feel not ready.
Also, being a believer…do you find it hard to be a hairstylist? Or have you loved having the benefit being able to share Jesus’ love with all the clients in your chair?
I feel this is what I’m good at, always loved it since I was little, but having these doubts, and not sure if it’s just Satan trying to keep me from pursuing my dream.
Thanks for your time!
Dear Kelly I,
Nice to meet you! Thanks for following Square Piece and feeling comfortable enough to voice some personal questions.
One of the very first posts I penned on Square Piece was how and why I wound up as a hairstylist today. If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s here and hopefully a tad enlightening. Unfortunately, I can’t speak specifically about cosmetology school as I went the route of an apprenticeship in order to get my license. Based on what I’ve seen in the industry, being that an apprenticeship is hands-on training, you’d definitely be more prepared for the “real world” if you went that route. Bear in mind that a lot of cosmetology schools are designed to help you pass your exam, an exam that is pathetically out-dated. Unfortunately, it’s not the easiest thing finding someone who is willing to take on an apprentice.
I’m not sure where you live, but Brian and I once checked out the Paul Mitchell school in Tysons Corner, VA. They’re a modern brand with updated techniques and I believe that if I did it all over again, I’d go there to 1) be more current, but 2) learn what I need to pass the exam, too (things you’ll likely never do again).
Did I have a lot of knowledge before entering the industry? Well, I wouldn’t have thought so at the time, but apparently I did. Hair ideas always came effortlessly to me, but I didn’t realize that that was unique. I figured, If it’s on your head, you should be able to do it, right? Not right. Wrong. Many, many people don’t know what to do with the hair on their head. So, yeah, I was a lot more qualified than I realized. That said, there was and still IS so much to learn. Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, EVER, EVER stop pursuing hair education. The minute you do, you’ll be lost in the dust of this racing industry. Don’t get comfortable. Keep exploring.
If you’re afraid that you won’t be ready once you’ve finished school, you’re right. You won’t be ready… for everybody. But you’ll be ready for enough of the right people to gain a little clientele and a little confidence. And the ones for whom you’re not ready? Well, be honest about it! Let them know that your schooling didn’t concentrate heavily on (X) areas, but if they’re willing to give you a chance, you’d like to explore the opportunity to practice it a bit more on (X). Perhaps even offer a discount while you’re using them as a “guinea pig” to strengthen your abilities. People always appreciate honesty and discounts. It’s a mighty duo.
As a believer, do I find it hard to be a hairstylist? Ha! As a believer, I find it hard… PERIOD! Everywhere and all the time. There’s always the temptation to lose sight of the fact that my goal is to “work heartily as unto the Lord.” I’m a sinner working on sinners. It’d be no different anywhere else. We can build each other up or tear each other down. The role of hairstylist is uniquely designed to build trust, build friendship, build connections… So if and when I have the opportunity to talk about Jesus, the nice thing is that it’s not like a Christian drive-by shooting, where people don’t see me coming, get waylaid, don’t know what just happened and are left feeling a reeling of awkward judgement and disapproval. Just as I am on Square Piece, I’m equally candid in real life and, therefore, naturally just HAVE to talk about Jesus sometimes because he’s such a normal part of my life. In fact, there are times where it’d be more awkward to obviously avoid the subject because clearly I’d be withholding an honest and personal perspective.
I guess what I’m saying is that, first of all, with or without words, I always want to pour out the love of Christ on others. And sometimes when those words get said, it’s not because I’m plotting and scheming the opportunity. It just happens, quite without my making it happen. But wouldn’t that be the case in any of my relationships in or outside of the salon?
I hope that answers the questions you had! Don’t hesitate to ask some more if you need some more clarification! The cosmetology industry is one of the greatest blessings the Lord has ever bestowed upon me. It’s never dull, never boring, quite portable and rather recession-proof. It can be as wonderful or as miserable as you want it to be. I tend to think it’s wonderful.
Phew! I’m wiped out now! I think I’ll just leave it at that as we all know that the spam around here is as ridiculous as ever.