Healthy Hairdresser

10 Habits to Build Mental Toughness

Rosanne Ullman | November 12, 2015 | 8:24 AM
Photo By Casarsa for Getty Images

Succeeding as a hairdresser requires you to have a heart as soft as cotton and nerves as hard as steel. You try to make people feel great when, in return, they may complain that you missed the mark on their hair color. It takes mental stamina to get through your day, and then you still have to manage your personal life.


According to a recent article in Forbes, you can develop traits that toughen you up mentally. To strengthen your mental toughness, work on these 10 habits, which are based on the Forbes article:

  1. Acknowledge your emotions in “real time.” Being able to identify your emotions as they occur indicates that you have high Emotional Intelligence (EQ), and research shows it will serve you better than a high IQ. When something goes wrong—anything from dealing with a toxic client to running out of your favorite styling product—acknowledge your negative emotions and learn how to turn them around to find something positive or at least let it “roll off your back.”
  2. Believe in yourself. Simple confidence gets you though good times and bad.
  3. Stay flexible. Change is the one thing you can count on, so embrace it and adapt as quickly as possible. In the beauty industry, getting stuck in a rut is the most common way to lose clients, and rigidity also keeps you from stretching your talents and creativity.
  4. Set boundaries. Clients want you to be available 24/7, but sometimes you just have to say “no.” Otherwise you’ll burn out or settle for mediocrity in all of your commitments, both at home and at work. This includes having the discipline to say “no” to yourself when you’re tempted to veer off your healthy path.
  5. Take risks. Lose the fear of failure. Trying new things practically guarantees that you’ll fail sometimes, but it’s also the only way to grow. Remember the mistakes you made so that you won’t repeat them, but don’t let mistakes shake your faith in yourself!
  6. Don’t compare yourself to others. Celebrate everyone’s successes rather than spending energy on figuring whether you measure up to other people. Other people’s opinions of you are just that—their opinions. Be true to yourself, and don’t be judgmental of others.
  7. Exercise. Do the endorphins from working out contribute to mental toughness? You already know the answer is yes! Exercise benefits you mentally and physically.
  8. Sleep. Like exercise, sufficient sleep is a must for general health and certainly for mental sharpness. During sleep, your brain removes toxic proteins so that you can focus, have clarity and generate great ideas.
  9. Limit caffeine. Caffeine triggers a fight-or-flight mechanism that takes the place of more careful and nuanced decision-making.
  10. Forgive easily. Holding a grudge bogs you down with negative energy. Who needs that? If you can’t forgive, at least forget. In general, stay positive and don’t dwell on the past or on events out of your control.




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