Recently, I had an experience that I imagine many can relate to Through my inability to assert myself and say ‘no’, I ended up paying £90 for a haircut I hated. Terrible I know, but I have come to acknowledge this event as a very important lesson on self-respect and the importance of establishing boundaries.
After a few days of mourning my old hair, I was able to ask myself some questions. Why did I let this happen, why did I find it so hard to confront the hairdresser, and what can I do to stop this happening again? My gut response was to call myself out as a ‘coward’. I know if this had happened to a friend, I would have told them to storm back into the hairdressers and ask for a refund or a new treatment. And yet, I couldn’t do that. I think it’s always important to be respectful when someone's craft is involved but equally, you shouldn’t be leaving an establishment fighting the urge to sob.
Logically, I know that the hairdressers is nothing more than a service. I wouldn’t eat a meal at a restaurant if it was cold and mouldy, let alone pay for it, so what stopped me at the hairdressers? I’m no psychologist, but I think that this behaviour stems from a lack of self-respect. I don’t value myself or my needs enough to fight back when they aren’t met.
Women, especially, are programmed to be submissive and avoid confrontation. Far too often, we are encouraged to just ‘deal with it’ and settle. This mentality is a hindrance and something we should all focus on overcoming. Learning to say ‘no,’ guilt-free, is crucial in establishing self-respect and maintaining personal boundaries. Nurturing your ability to say ‘actually, I deserve better than this’ is not only empowering but it is also essential in securing your own happiness.
Prioritise yourself - it will change your life!