âThe wise adapt themselves to circumstances, as water moulds itself to the pitcher."
In just six weeks, everything can changeâfor you and your clients. They may not have the same concerns or even be the same people they were during their last visit. And chances are, youâve undergone a change, too. Are you ready to adapt to whatever life brings?
Change can be scary, if you feel inadequate to a task. I discovered this over the last six weeks, finalizing plans for a Redken reunion in Los Angeles, hosted by our Founder/Chairman Paula Kent Meehan. Iâve always been a presenter/trainer at the events, never the meeting planner/organizer! My new role has given me such great appreciation for my friends Debbie Dalton, Nichole Rescildo and Kerrin Perez, and their abilities to create and act from their left brainâlogical, sequential and rationalânot my gifts! And yet, Iâm learning that with a little help from my friends, I can do what it takes to bring all the pieces together.
If thereâs a challenge in your life that requires you to acquire new skills, adjust your work habits or adapt to new ideas, just believe, you can do it. And ask some friends for help.
Change can be both heartbreaking and happy. I realized this when I got involved with the Beauty Bus Foundationâa volunteer organization in Southern California that trains and supplies salon professionals with what they need to serve home-bound clients, who have terminal and chronic diseases. A few weeks ago, I visited with Pilar, a Parkinsonâs patient whose arms and legs were flailing so drastically when we arrived, that I thought, âThese professionalsâJanet and Crystal from Robbie Schaefferâs salonâwill never be able to work their magic due to her muscle disruptions.â
Was I wrong! The moment Pilarâs feet went into a pedicure basin and her hands were held and massaged during her manicure (which included a sexy, red OPI nail polish), her tremors stopped. She talked about her former life in New York City, where she worked at Bergdorf Goodman on Fifth Avenue. Reliving those memories, she was transported from a body that betrayed her to one of stillness and grace. If I hadnât witnessed it with my own eyes, I wouldnât have believed it. There is power in your professional touch!
If youâre ready to volunteer your time to help someone whose changes bring sorrow, but to whom you can bring some happiness, it could change your life in ways never imagined. If youâre in Southern California and able to adapt your work to anotherâs unfortunate circumstances, please consider The Beauty Bus: beautybus.org.
Change can be disruptive, permanent and humbling. The most challenge changes are ones you canât do anything about. Over the last six weeks, I experienced one of those, too. One of our familyâs best friends had been diagnosed with a brain tumor. After seven surgeries, this strong, handsome, winsome man of 40âa tri-athlete and marathon runner, massage therapist and nature loverâhas been reduced to a vegetative state. Now, itâs only a matter of time before he makes his transition. When I visited him and his family at UCLA Medical Center, I realized that sometimes, all we can do is be there. Hold, hug, pray and offer family members the relief of humor.
As hairdressers with whom your clients share their lifeâs wins and losses, you can only prepare yourself to adapt to their changes with dignity, compassion and empathy.
Finally, change can be fun! Iâm now on my way to my university homecoming in Oklahoma. When I was there on the private Christian campus from '65 to '69, the student count was 1,900. I serve on the Alumni Board, and am proud of how the institution has kept pace with the changing currents of education, while holding on to the mission: Character Culture Christ.
This is bound to be another opportunity for me to be adaptable, when I reunite with former classmates. And Iâm ever so grateful to all my salon-professional friends who prepared my hair, skin and nails for the weekend. Thanks to the changes they made, I feel more like the 22-year old who left 41 years ago, than a 63-year old alumna!
Those were my six weeksâ worth of changes; imagine how many your clients have gone through since that last time you saw them. Their changes may not be as demanding of various adaptations to circumstance as mineâor they could be even more compelling. Just donât assume they are the same people who sat in your chair six weeks ago.
I know Iâm not.
âIf you live in a river, you should make friends with the crocodile.â
About Ann Mincey
For 35 years, Ann Minceyâs training programs have helped beauty professionals reduce stress, refuel creativity, open their hearts and enrich their lives. As one of the first women to teach motivation, inspiration, confidence and well-being, Ann worked for Redken 5th Avenue NYC, where she advanced to Vice President of Global Communications before recently retiring. She remains a spokesperson for the brand, in addition to developing her own speaking and enrichment business. Having been recognized with numerous leadership awards and philanthropic honors, Ann is a sought-after public speaker and author of âGet Glowing! You are a Star Right Where You Are!â. She can be booked through Equanimity, Inc. speakersâ agency (equanimity.com). Salon industry inquiries should be made to firstname.lastname@example.org.