A day in the life of a Bridal Hair Stylist/Multiple Business Owner.
So why did I decide to do this and let you into the depths of my day?
Because running any business is hard and nothing is perfect (no matter how Instagram can look)
I, like most find it hard to open up to this online world and put my raw self out there as I worry about the judgement - I feel people already do that based on what they think they know! So can you imagine the fear of actually being yourself when you are the face of 3 businesses - but yet why do we all forget that we are all human behind every photo and every post? I work more hours than most do average on a daily basis, 6-7 days a week and time off is usually spent doing admin work (technically not time off), going to the gym and going on holiday or having a break which usually means falling behind on those work things because a social life is squeezed in... and the guilt of falling behind is real when I know I have brides and clients waiting on me but I need to also look after myself without the guilt!!! So whilst opening up seems to be a great way of letting you all know i'm only human, I get scared like everyone, I worry about how I will be portrayed about the trust people put on me for one of the most important days of their lives and I love that only my best friends know the real me. But truth is I show up through thick and thin because its your special day and no matter what is going on in my life... your wedding isn't about me, it's about you and I will always be professional when it comes to your day as my life is really irrelevant apart from giving you the most perfect hair that day.
I think my love for this job really is about how I make people feel. And if opening up a little can also change the way people feel from within, I'm winning!!! Day to day in the salon I speak to such inspirational women, many who run their own businesses or work full time jobs, being a mum and being just awesome on top of all that. And whilst in the salon, it's like a sanctuary of secret safety... and boy do we have a rant! (Usually over a cuppa - it is a hairdressers after all.) Not because we don't love our jobs, our families, our partners or everything else in between but because life is hard sometimes and isn't it just lifting when you know you aren't the only one? Not because you want others to suffer too but because isn't it just nice to know we aren't alone in having a bad day/week!!!
It's how you choose to handle the situations in your life that define you, not the fact that you have them.
So here was a day of mine from a couple of weeks ago I want to share with you because I'm real too...
I had a meltdown last night!! Because I'm normal (so are those who don't have them by the way) and running a business is hard. I also have a bacterial infection which is causing fatigue so only getting three and a half hours sleep really didn't help - the same fatigue that caused the meltdown in the first place. My productivity levels and motivation are pretty much none existent, it's all about getting to my next nap/sleep and then I feel guilty when I haven't done anything other than my physical work (a business cannot survive on this alone) ... so basically one vicious circle! This is 6 weeks in which has been fun - NOT!
(Little update by the way - a case of antibiotics and I seem to be on the mend, yay!)
I start my day at 4.45am and take an hour and fifty minute drive to my wedding (oh yes I travel - sometimes even on a plane!) During the journey I listen to Tony Robbins podcast as I need something to boost my energy in times like this and he always gets my mind racing again. (I highly recommend his podcasts for anybody needing some inspiration.)
I arrive around 30 minutes early (as I always leave a little extra time on such a long travel incase of traffic) and I sit in my car and do my make-up so that I could at least look human and presentable that day as I felt like death. Just know that if I have make-up on for your wedding morning, 90% of the time it's because I was round the corner a little early!!
This is where I get the best part of my day - The Wedding Morning! For those who have met me, most of you have probably heard me say "You can never have a bad day at work at a wedding" and this still rings true to this day. What an honour being part of a wedding morning is and it instantly changes my mood and makes me forget about anything else going on in my life. I'm sure many others have parts of their job that is like that too... cherish those moments in your career and be present in that moment because work is often such a big part of our lives, so why would you not want to at least enjoy what you can of it?
I wait right until the end (which can often mean sitting around for an hour!) to put in my brides hair accessories and veil to complete her perfect imagine for the day - one happy bride - TICK. Now the drive home, I'm running late because of the hanging around but this is where the job can often pull me from side to side and make me feel torn, because my brides are my priority that day and rushing off at the end can often be inappropriate but my regular clients are usually the ones left waiting and being put out for these mornings which usually leaves me feeling like I cannot win. I always said it's like running two businesses and now that the 'normal' hairdressing part of my career has expanded to a hair salon, this is now 100% the case.
By the time I get back to the salon it is 3.45pm (10 hours since my day started), I then have two of my regular clients booked in for their highlights and cuts. Just because I'm 10 hours into my day, running on little sleep and only ate a breakfast bar for lunch in the car, does not mean their appointments should suffer or lack service so off I go, putting in foils, making a cuppa and having a good ol' chin wag catching up with them.
So most of you by now would be thinking great! 13 hour working day. Home time. Early night, right?!! Wrong! Because how do you keep friends if all your life consists of is work? So I head home, have a quick bite to eat and head to my best friends for a few hours as she wanted to show all of her bridesmaids the wedding photos from her own special day. (May I just add a quick advertisement in here because Lee Hatherall Photography totally nailed her photos!) I definitely ate more than my fair share of the chocolate whilst I was there and had a little glass of rosé to end the day.
As for admin time, let's face it that wasn't going to happen today... Let the guilt train continue! I believe to have that work/life balance that everyone dreams of you have to be ok with being selfish and I'm not quite ready for that yet. I like to make others happy so here I am at nearly 2am writing this blog post hoping this will help someone to see that YOU ARE NORMAL no matter how intense your day can seem. And one day when I'm ready to take a step back and not feel like I have to put others before myself, I'll feel content in knowing I've done my fair share over the years.
Just because your day didn't start like you wanted, doesn't always mean you have to end it the same way. Perspective is a wonderful thing.