I’ve had my business and this website for a long time now… and I really only use it as a marketing tool, as well as for helpful hints and advice for clients. I’ve been thinking for a long time about actually utilising it as more a of a blog to share my thoughts and experiences related to both my business and my interactions with a diverse range of clientele who walk through my doors.
So here I am… round one.
I think today I would like to share about how having a beauty business has completely transformed the way I understand and interact with people, in particular, women. When I grew up, my mother wasn’t really around, so I was raised primarily by my father. And as a consequence, my interests were shaped by a male role model. I spoke and joked like “a guy”. I dressed like a guy. And most influentially, I preferred to socialise with “the guys”. The idea that I would ever be in the beauty industry would’ve been laughable to me many years ago. But yet, here I am – surrounded by women on a daily basis.
In the beginning, I honestly didn’t think I would be able to do the job. I was scared. I was intimidated. I would have to come face to face with women for longer than a fleeting moment in a store… I would have to “talk” to them… and more than that, I would need to “relate” to them somehow! I didn’t understand “their world”. I didn’t get the lingo. I didn’t get the jokes. I really didn’t get anything much about women (despite being one myself!).
Not long into running the business, my younger brother (and my only sibling) passed away. No one teaches you how to handle death, or what to do when tragedy hits, and because i already had a couple of girls booked in the next day after his passing, I didn’t think to cancel. So these two girls turned up for a spray tan, and I thought I could go about my business and the distraction would take my mind off things. But instead, as soon as they spoke, I broke down crying… It just came out, I couldn’t help it. I was expecting them to feel awkward and put off by my display, but instead they told me to stop… they wanted to be in the moment with me. I wiped away my tears and briefly told them what had happened. Instead of feeling like I had to hide my feelings, these girls allowed me to just “be”. They understood. They seemed to care. They were empathising with me. After they had left, they came back shortly after – with a big bunch of flowers. They were so incredibly sweet – it really blew my mind!
I know it probably sounds incredibly unreal for a female to say that they were shocked by being treated well by women – but it’s the truth. When you grow up without a female role model, and you are surrounded by little girls who are adored by their mothers, no one seems to understand ” the girl who’s mother is never there”… in fact, I was bullied for it. “Your mum must hate you!”, they would yell out to me as I walked home from school, “she’s never around – she doesn’t love you”. So, understandably, I didn’t really have a good relationship with my own sex. I was almost bitter about them. They were mean to me, and I didn’t like them in return. In my late teens, I even studied Psychology at University to better understand myself and how women work. It made no difference. I wasn’t any wiser from learning about people from an intellectual point of view. Women still baffled me.
So here I was, years later, interacting with women… often times, naked in front of me… on a regular basis. Incredible.
The more I interacted with them, the more I came to realise that women are, for the most part, pretty amazing. They are kind, caring, empathetic and they want to help. Obviously not all women are like this. And especially when you deal with the general public like I do, you can get some pretty crazy ones. But, it’s the ones that smile when they see you.. the ones that talk to you with sincerity… the ones that ask how “you” are instead of just talking about themselves… these are the women that have changed my life for the better. They are who make my job so incredibly satisfying.
Today, in my every day life, no matter where I am, if I see a female – I smile… and they smile back. It is the most amazing experience for me. And I owe it all to my little beauty business and the amazing clients that walk through my door.