today is the day i attempt to get a haircut.
for "normal" people this is not a big deal. but for people like me, people who live with anxiety, a haircut is a freaking scary thing, yo. i mean, a stranger is touching you - at your request. you are stuck in a chair, being forced to make awkward small talk (as an introvert i fear small talk) and against every flight instinct in your body you are held captive until you are finished smiling politely while the stylist holds up a mirror to the back of your head at an awkward angle. after paying and stressing over the tip amount you stumble blindly outside into the sunshine, inhale what feels like your first full breath in hours and think to yourself "fraaaack, i hope this hair looks good". because, truthfully, you have no idea. the entire experience has been on autopilot with good manners at the control. screw your comfort level, because you should probably not make the one with the scissors angry.
but why do we do this? why do we allow those who are supposed to be providing us with a pleasant experience make us uncomfortable and then not only pay for the service but tip according to cost, not satisfaction?
last week i had a disheartening experience at a salon that caused me to leave before making it into the chair. at first i thought it was just hormones, or the heat, or my anxieties making me 'unreasonable'. but the more i talked to people about it the more i was told "good for you for leaving. very brave."
and isn't it funny that "leaving" would be the exception to the norm.
how much are we willing to accept "poor service" because it may be cheaper or located conveniently or just what we have become used to? i read THIS ARTICLE in which the author clearly states that she feels "uncomfortable" and uses the words "endure" and "guilt" - two words that should not be used when speaking about an experience where we are parting ways with our hard earned money and time. a salon experience is meant to be a pleasant experience that we choose and yet even if it is not we make the conscious effort to return. if the words "uncomfortable", "endure" and "guilt" were associated with your gynecologist would you hesitate to move on? i wouldn't.
what has to happen and how bad does service need to be before we stop blaming ourselves or excusing the poor service just because the service and/or product is convenient to us in some way. personally i side-eye you h&m for non-existent customer service, corner shop guy near me with the perpetual case of the mondays and now ex-salon.
it was around this time last year that i posted about BREAKING UP WITH "MY" THRIFT STORE. as i re-read the post it made me remember the fear that i felt at the time, but in retrospect know it now to have been the best decision for the situation. i got over it and have found a new fave thrift that treats me with respect and earns my money and time with a pleasant shopping experience. i hope the same can be said for my haircut experience in the future.
life is too short for bad hair and bad service.