Learning to trust yourself the hard way…
Sometimes the hardest person to trust is ourselves. Not because we are not good or reliable people, but because of fear. Often, when we encounter a problem in our lives, we know how to fix it. Many times the solution is scary so we avoid and throw spaghetti at the wall attempting less scary, half-assed tactics to quickly or less expensively attack the problem. We are frustrated and devastated as attempt after attempt results in failure. Meanwhile, in the back of our minds, we have know the answer all along but been too fearful to act on it. Finally, with our backs against the wall, and out of complete desperation, we step back, take a deep breath, and leap into the thing we should have done to start with; praying through it that it goes well because we just can’t take one more failure.
This may be a feeble example but for anyone who has ever their hair seriously jacked up, you will understand the panic! Two days ago I decided I wanted to freshen up my color real quick before my weekly date night with my husband. My current ombre hair color is not at all simple or quick to “freshen up” but I have had my cosmetology license since 2004 and I have been coloring my own hair for 15 years. Plus, I aced color theory in beauty school so this should have been easy thing for me.I should have been able to trust my gut and do this right the first time. However, for whatever reason, the last few times I’ve done this (ever since I had my son), my hair has come out super red and required some serious corrective color over following couple of days… this attempt was worse than all other attempts. I know it was bad because even my husband, who self admittedly hardly notices anything is wrong with my “hair emergencies”, gave me the dropped jaw look and asked if I was going to wear a hat to our (now casual) date night.
At this reaction, my anxiety went through the roof! I had fiery strawberry blonde roots and I had already thrown two other colors/toners on the roots to bring it back to neutral but all that did was turn the blonde strange shades of rainbow… I stuffed my funky do into a hat and went on date night. I stressed about this the whole time we were gone. I was so grateful for the cover of night and darkness to hide it. We came back around 9:30pm and I went right back to work on my hair. This time, I leaned on my skill and good old color theory. My hair was red. I needed to put green in to neutralize it. That is the scariest thing EVER! So even though this was in the back of my mind all along, I did NOT want to do this. I was left with no choice. I put something over the blonde to protect it (which by this point was no longer blue or purple) and then went in with the slightly darker neutral/green mixture. I stuck to my plan, with my jaw clenched and core engaged as I fearfully proceeded. As I shampooed, I prayed that God would fix this even if I didn’t put the right color on because now it was so late I wouldn’t have time for another attempt at fixing it. I emerged from the shower, and ran to the mirror dripping wet to check the results.
Thank the lord! I am BACK! It worked. The color was fresh and blended, and perfectly matched. If only I had leaned on my skill and trusted myself in the beginning, maybe I would have done this right the first time and avoided my Raggedy-Ann impersonation! The crazy thing is, I already knew my hair would turn red and how to keep that from happening. But because putting green in your hair color is a scary thing, I didn’t want to do it. So I avoided it but eventually I ended up having to do it anyway.
Sure, the path of failure resulted in some crucial learning along the way, but it also resulted in massive anxiety and unnecessary stress. How can we learn to trust ourselves from the onset? I think this only comes with practice and a track record of successes on a loop that frame your internal dialogue. Trusting your gut is not always easy… Heck, noticing when your gut is telling you something isn’t easy at first. You aren’t sure if you’re uncomfortable because of the situation or the questionable leftovers you ate for lunch. But the more you lean into those feelings, and start to dig in, the easier it will be to hear that advice coming from within yourself. Trust yourself. You know more than you think.