I recently chopped a whopping nine inches off my usual do. I had been growing it out, thinking that I’d be doing cool stuff with it, but in reality I feel very limited with my skills in the hair department. I recently got married, so having long hair was nice when someone else was in charge of the results, but that’s about it. My good intentions ended up in a ratty bun or ponytail most of the time.
With my dramatically shorter hair cut, folks have have been asking if it is “so much easier to manage.” For me, no! I have been learning what makes a good quality hair dryer and how to hold it, what products are used when and why, and what in the heck to do with my bangs.
While it seems that most folks learned how to manage their hair in their teen years, I’m a bit behind the curve. I wish I had had an older sister to show me the ropes, or that I had cared more when I was younger!
This experience of trying something new and struggling a bit has been a great reminder for me to know what it is like for my clients working hard to make changes to their eating and exercise habits. What seems second nature to me can be very overwhelming to my clients. I often use the analogy of learning some other skill or sport with learning to eat well for my clients: “pretend you’re learning to play the piano or learning to ballroom dance. You are learning a bit at a time and building from there.”
The good news is that perfection is never the goal. Health and wellness is about what you do most of the time, not one meal or dessert. It is common for folks to strive for perfection when making wellness goals, but that really isn’t sustainable or realistic. Even though I am a Registered Dietitian, I indulge in cookies and pizza sometimes, just not all the time. I work with my clients to balance the treats in life with their health goals.
As I am learning how to better manage my hair, I remind myself that most days are not perfect. It will probably never look the same as when the talented hair dresser styled it, but I’m getting better (and faster) each time I try. Progress, not perfection!
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