To say we’ve all been a little stressed the past few years would be an understatement. Many of us have changed jobs, schools, moved, or had children, all while navigating a world that is changing much faster than we can keep up with. It’s safe to say we’re reaching burnout at an earlier age, which is probably why countries around the world (and even California) have been testing out the 4 day work week. All too often, stylists and salon staff push themselves to make their clients happy. Squeezing in one more root touch up or skipping lunch to finish that blow out. While this is ok to do every once in a while, it can become mentally taxing if it becomes a habit. Take a moment this month as we celebrate Mental Health Awareness to evaluate your daily routine and check-in with those around you to see if there are a few healthy changes you can make to combat burnout and improve your mental health.
Sometimes you just need a break
For many stylists, it’s a badge of honor to highlight the fact that you don’t take breaks during the day, fueling yourself with coffee and never taking a moment to sit. The problem with this is that your body can’t run on empty. Stylists often skip lunches or extend their hours to fit the needs of their clients, but at a great expense. When possible, consider pushing that extra appointment to another day or meal prepping lunches and snacks the night before so you’re able to at least have a healthy snack while your client processes. Let’s normalize taking breaks and nourishing ourselves!
Due to the fact that many beauty professionals fall under a 1099 or contractor status, if they don’t work — they don’t get paid. This can be extremely limiting if you fall sick or simply need a mental health day. If you don’t have a support system at your salon, consider creating one. Whether you have a buddy that can help you blow-dry, someone to confide in after work or a group text chain that offers a bit of comic relief, sometimes talking about your day with someone can be cathartic.
Create boundaries and set expectations
If you do everything for your clients, they’ll continue expecting the same and more — often at the same price. Whether you’re dealing with a new client or an established one, start the season off by creating new boundaries and setting expectations for both of you. If you used to give your longtime client free bang trims, consider charging them. If you have someone who constantly shows up late or wants to book in at the last minute, come up with a policy that protects your bottom line. Create a system of mutual respect to ensure you’re both getting what you want from the relationship.
Continue to check in with yourself and others this month and always and set yourself up for success by choosing life-work balances that are best for you!