July 19, 2007

Bad Hair Daze

Uninvestigated, a bad hair day can plunge me from Loving What Is straight to heck.

Rick Watson of Portland, Oregon, has done an inquiry on haircuts at his blog. (Why not? Every stressful belief is good grist for the mill, however petty it may appear.)

While Rick began by stating that haircuts are too expensive (they should only cost about $12 and should always look good!), he realized, after questioning his thoughts, that it's not the price of the cut that bothers him as much as his expectations of the results.

Those of us with hair may relate. (The rest of you have your own inquiry work cut out for you.)

Haircuts rarely meet my expectations either. I expect improvement. I've always believed that this was what I was paying for. I've seen, after reading Rick's piece, that in reality, I'm only paying to have my hair made shorter in length. The rest is a story.

I'm about to go on the road for several weeks, and I thought I'd be clever and have my hair cut a week in advance, so as not to have that just-chopped-and-still-in-shock look when I arrive at my first stop. By the time I leave, I thought, those stressed tresses will look gorgeous.

So far, not so good.

My moderately expensive coif is now shaped into a tres trendy shag style, which just looks messy to me. My beef is not so much with the stylist's cost (I've had good $75 cuts and good $15 ones, and really bad cuts all over the price spectrum as well); rather it concerns beliefs that I need my hair to look gorgeous, that I have "bad" hair, that my hair should cooperate, etc.

This is ultimately about control. In order to be satisfied with my haircut, I'd have to be the puppet-master of my stylist ("I want her to create a miracle"), the climate ("It shouldn't be 'frizz weather'"), the amount of minerals in the H2O in which I wash it ("California water is too hard"), female hormonal changes ("I look like crap for half the month"), my genetics ("My hair should be thicker"), and of how everyone else sees it ("They won't think I'm attractive").

Remember how it was to be a teenager with a zit...how less than a millimeter of skin eruption could become the entire focus of our lives? It's not quite that bad, but when I think my hair looks awful, I've been known to show up feeling a bit apologetic for my very existence. I've been known not to show up, period. Because, heaven forbid, you might see me as I see myself. (Some friend you turned out to be!)

All this angst and hopelessness over some silly dead cells.

Now it's your turn: What's a petty irritation of yours that creates a "ripple effect" of other stressors? What are the beliefs that lay beneath your original stressful thought?

©2007 by Carol L. Skolnick; all rights reserved.


Marianne said...


No photo of the new haircut?

I'm totally jealous of your dark and wavy hair. My hair has never frizzed...it just lays down and dies in the heat and humidity.

Rick said...

Beautiful! Thank you for unraveling this tangled dreadlock of beliefs further for me. ~ Rick