Q & A
We had a few questions when it came to criticism. How do you handle being criticized by your peers behind your back? I'm opinionated and tell it like it is and people are very judgmental. How do you try and bring those people on your side? If you try and do that.
So, some people you can't bring on your side and I think that's something you have to accept as well. I think a lot of what happens, when you are a certain way. We've talked about perception, right? Of how people perceive me. You know, you look a certain way, you project something in a certain way, and people will make that judgment, whether it's right or wrong, that you can look aggressive. That you can look like you're mean. You can look like you're this. You can look like a bitch. You look like a pushover, right? People make all these crazy assumptions. I mean, we do it too. And it's wrong because you can't judge a book by the cover. And when you are vulnerable, which we talked about before, and really let people know how...
you are, doesn't mean you have to do it from a place of weakness. Especially when you're a boss. You don't have to be weak. And that's what scares a lot of people. But to be vulnerable and open, and let people know if this is where I'm coming from. Yes, I am the boss. Yes, you will not like all the rules that I'm going to have to enforce. The things that I'm going to tell you are required as part of your job, but that is my job. My job is to do that, and here's why we're doing it. When you enlist people and tell them why and it can simply be, instead of ordering someone. We do it to each other sometimes. We definitely do it as work. We just tell people to do things. And it becomes an order. No one likes that. No one does. When you tell people the why, here is what I need you to do and here is the reason why, our company's going in a different direction. I need you to show up for me as a friend because I need someone right now. I'm struggling. When you put it in that way and tell people the why, most people wanna be there for you. And the people, honestly for me, the people that wanna talk about be behind my back, that wanna criticize me, that want to say that I'm a bitch, that's okay. It's really okay. Because they could be struggling with something. And it's okay if they wanna talk about me. I can't let that come into my little universe. They can do them and I'll do me, so I can't let that come in. And that is building that wall. Part of that comes from me meditating and me journaling, and me self-caring, whatever that self-care is. Whether it's a nice cup of tea and a hot bath and a good book or just closing off. I can't take it in because we're all porous. We're all like sponges. We're all just like, you know, suck in all that energy and that negativity and even though we say it's not going to bother us, sometimes the people that come off the toughest are the biggest softies. And it does chip away at you and it does hurt your self esteem, and it does make you feel crappy about yourself and it does lower your value and your opinion of yourself, and you should not give anyone else that power.
I just wanna thank you for your acronym. Because of it, I want to be a BITCH. (laughing) No, I don't wanna be a BITCH. I am a BITCH. A big BITCH. My question is, okay, so in my office, I have a coworker, supervisor. I hope they're not watching this. Um, and they're a little bipolar. I mean, when they're nice and they're in a great mood, everything's perfect in the office. I actually find myself wanting to talk to this person and hang out with them, but then within a second, a split second, their mood can change, hostile, mean, and it can just throw off the whole mood in the office. So, I guess I'm asking you for advice. I don't wanna be the kind of person, who, like, wants to seek her approval and but I find myself doing a little jig inside, getting all happy whenever she is nice to me, giving my breadcrumbs and I'm not sure how to handle it.
It's a great question and you can't be responsible for someone's erratic behavior. Right, so if they're all over the map, and they're really erratic in their mood swings, whatever the reason that they're erratic in their mood swings, you can't control that. You can only control how you respond to it. So if you're starting to get freaked out when they're coming in, like, what person is it? Is it jackal or hide today? You need to, then, disassociate enough to know, as long as I do my job and I'm doing my job, this is what it has to be. Ask someone, what's required of me? If they're starting to give you conflicting rules. Sometimes people do that. They're not clear of what they want you to do, so they start throwing all these things at you, and it's not a clear, consistent path. Can we just take a second? Let's just be really clear. I want to know what actionable steps you need me to take so I can get my job done for you. Right, and stop them. Sometimes just doing that and slowing them down, it's because they're all over the place and their brain is going all over the place. It's natural, and we really do need to feel valued. We do. We just need to feel valued as human beings. And when you're working with someone, and you know, it's your boss or coworker, and you feel like they don't respect you as a coworker, right? They don't respect you as a human being, and you're not being valued, it's understandable to want those breadcrumbs 'cause as soon as you get a little bit of it, you're like, oh, that's good. Right, little bit more. Want a little bit more of that. Of course, that's what we all do. But when you have, and again, I'm speaking from experience. When you have that self-esteem, and you have your support system, or you know what you need to do to take care of yourself and set your boundaries, that can't affect me. That just can't come into my orbit. I'm not saying it's as easy as I'm saying it is now. I've had many years to work on it not coming into my orbit. Right, and sometimes it still does. And I still have the same way. I was working with someone that didn't like me. And I went out of my way to try and make them like me. And the harder I tried, the less they liked me, and it drove me nuts. Then it just became this thing. Why don't they like me? They have to like me. How can they not like me? I haven't done anything for them not to like me. So, and then as soon as they said good morning, I was like, they like me! Snap, right? That's what happens but when you realize that you do need to take care of yourself and you put up your boundaries, it's much easier so that you don't feel that push and pull because that comes from them, not you. Who else has a question? Yes.
It kinda goes to the question of boundaries. Like when you were saying the first time when your staff all left. You said it was a learning lesson. It helped you set up boundaries. What were some of those boundaries that you set up?
The boundaries that I set up, I changed my direction and I was much more honest and I wasn't always there and available the way I had been before, because I was still traveling, right? And my boundaries changed of what I needed to do for me. And it was actually a realignment for me of how much do I wanna be in here all the time. So, it was a real turning point for me because I was, I mean, I would work seven days. I'm a hard worker. You know? I would. I'd work seven days. For the first several years of my business I didn't even want a cleaner. I wanted to clean up myself. It's just me. And I didn't have a lot of those boundaries and I spent a lot of time in there. And it became too much. Does that make sense? My life started to shrink as it started to grow in the amount of time I was putting in and the amount of volume I was putting in and it wasn't a good balance. So my boundaries had to change for me. My rules had to change as a leader. My rules has to change in my business of what was going to happen moving forward based on what happened. I had to let people know that I wouldn't be there all the time. That this was part of what I was doing. I had made this commitment to this show and I was right in the thick of it. And to be honest, and this has changed now, for me, personally, I put a lot of boundaries around myself because I was really hurt. I was really hurt by that. That was a real kick in the face. So, my boundaries also got. Don't smile at anyone. Don't wanna talk to anyone. Don't wanna do this. And you know, every time that you do that, everything gets smaller. It really does. So you feel more squeezed anyway. And I realized over time that it really wasn't, it wasn't, those boundaries weren't the right ones because that wasn't the work environment that I believe in, that I lead by, or that I wanted. I realized that my boundaries and values had changed and it was time to adjust my business model on those. That's why the checking's important 'cause it changes. Stuff changes. Does that help?
Yeah. Yes. Right behind you. If you could pass it behind. That's excellent.
Thank you. I've taken so much away from today so I wanna just thank you so much for your time. When dealing with fear and discomfort, how do you differentiate between what you said earlier about who you are and stand in what works for you, so knowing that some things make you very uncomfortable and do more, keep what's comfortable and then movement in the direction of courage. So if you're afraid, how do you know that maybe in this instance, I should stand in what works for me and honor where I feel comfortable and where you have to push that discomfort because it never occurred to me to stand in what works for me. I always said, push myself past those boundaries. Push through and I feel like I might have been, I may have been too hard on myself in that regard. So, how do you know--
That's a great question. You have to do a little self-analysis. A little check in with yourself because sometimes you are being too hard on yourself and when I said earlier that fear was an indicator, sometimes it means slow down. Sometimes it means speed up, depending on what your situation is in. It's the same thing with you. Sometimes it can be, cut myself some slack and see what I can learn in this moment and take that in, to help me grow to the next level. Does that make sense? And you have to look at it. We're always looking for the next shiny thing, for the next shiny thing, for the next shiny thing, and just keep pushing and pushing, and A, it doesn't allow us to live our lives of any value, we're just living and existing but we're not enjoying and it also doesn't let you take a little space and perspective and look at the view and go, you know what? It's not bad here. This is good to sit for a minute while I maybe need to work on these skills that aren't that strong so that I can do a little self work or get a little bit more education or learn to communicate a little bit better or find a couple of staff to help me take my business then to this level. Does that make sense? So, only you can really answer that. But I think it's important to look at standing in it for a minute, doesn't have to be long. But most of the times, we just wanna push through it. Create a distraction. Talk about it being something else, and not just feeling it and deciding what it is, and then, where we should go. And I think the biggest, probably, distinction for me, is when you keep doing the same thing and you're not getting the result you want. We all know that quote, right? It's insanity. But it's also when you keep, if you're trying something and it just keeps having these results that you're not looking for and you're not getting the change, then you have to start looking at yourself and go, you know what, I'm stuck in this fear and I need some courage to get me through it because I'm just stuck. If I'm not moving and I'm miserable and I'm stuck here, yeah, I need some courage. Pass it down. Oh, unless there's one there.
Throughout your 30 plus-year career, both in on and off screen, I'm just wondering, we all, everybody throughout their lives deals daily with self-esteem issues, whether it's personal, professional, and it's an ongoing battle throughout their entire lives and it's something I've noticed that you've dealt with in just about every experience that you've had, especially on the television shows that you've done. Have you learned or what would be your best advice or what have you found, that helps empower people or helps them find their value, self-esteem, and self-worth, is there any particular thing you've found as a facilitator that you've been able to utilize to help individuals recognize that value and worth?
Thank you. That's a great question. The biggest thing I have found is to not compare. To not compare yourself to anyone else because there is no comparison, because you're you, and as soon as you start comparing, and we live in a world where comparisons are pushed down our throat every single day. They just are. But as soon as you start comparing of being too heavy or not successful enough or not making enough money or not driving the right car or not doing this or not doing that or being too much of a bitch or not being as nice as the last boss was. As soon as you compare yourself to another person, you're screwed. That's where it is, and I think for most of us, that's where it comes from, and the stereotypes that sometimes we put on people, or people put on us, and everything is put under these little umbrellas of stereotypes. It is just so ridiculous because it keeps us feeling like we have to compare to people. You ask everyone in this room what is success, we'd all have a different answer, and they're all the right answer because they're ours. You ask someone realistically without being crazy, what is enough, what is enough for you to make to live comfortably every year? To just be comfortable. And we all have a different answer, depending on where we live or a different need depending on how big our family is or whatever and that's okay, but, we can feel like that's not enough, we've gotta, and that's comparison, and I feel like comparison is the kiss of death. Every time we do it or every time someone does it to us, it affects us, and it immobilizes us. I feel like, and I've had it done to me, recently, actually. You know, I get told a lot to be, it's this thing, I get told to be just like I am but different. (audience laughing) Like, we love you just how you are, but could you be different? Could you be a little bit more like this person? Or a little bit more, and A, it's confusing. I know I can't, and when I try to be, I act weird and then I'm like no one. I'm not like myself, I'm not like that person. I'm just weird, and it's uncomfortable and I rarely think, it's such a good question, thank you, that we do it all the time, we compare ourselves or we let other people compare us to you know, their last partner. Or their last boss, or their last colleague or their last hairdresser or their last aesthetician or the last photographer, the last artist or the last chef or whatever the hell it is. It's always the last one. Well, no.
First of all, thank you for your vulnerability. I feel like I learned a lot just from that. Just to be vulnerable, myself, with others as well and my question, at the beginning, you said that you're a yes-person, that you say yes to everything that comes your way. I feel like I'm the same way and how do I say no and not have the fear of maybe that yes would have been the perfect one and not this yes, does that make sense? Like, how do I say no and differentiate between which no or which yes is the right for me.
Oh, that's hard. I mean, to know which is the best yes and which is the best no is a really personal thing. It depends on the situation. I went through, I would say yes to every client. But the only way I would say yes was on my terms because I wouldn't speed up my work, I wouldn't squeeze someone in, but I would stay, and I had, in my business until sometimes midnight, one o'clock in the morning, doing things to get it done. Because I, or I would come in really early and stay really late. Or work on a day that I was off. Because that's what I did. Again, it leads to burnout and it leads to bad self-esteem because you're not taking care of yourself and you burn out and you lose your passion and then what happens when that happens? Think about the emotions. I want you to think about your feelings more. We become bitter. We become angry. We get a little mean. We become resentful. All of those things start to come up and it goes from being that joy and this thing that you love and this passionate, creative experience and you turn into this mean, bitter, resentful person that can't even stand doing it, because of what you've created. So I realized that, again, I had to have boundaries. I had to put boundaries up to that, that no, you know what, this is the max that I can work and function really well and still take care of myself. How you know what to say yes and no to in a project, is, you have to weigh it out. I'm a big one on trusting my gut. My gut doesn't lie, it knows.
And the discount, can you talk a little bit more about why you're strongly against the discount?
In life or in business?
In business, I'll start with business, you know, remember that when I speak about business, I speak for my industry, so I speak very much from the hair industry and discounting our work and like many of you in this room, whether you're a hairdresser or not, you're an artist. You bring a skill set and you bring your own expertise to what you do and I just don't believe that as an artist I should discount my work because I am worth it. I put in the sweat equity. I put in the training. I put in the love. I put in the experience and I'm not gonna discount my work. And it doesn't build a strong business. It doesn't build a strong clientele because a lot of people are just coming for the discount and the coupon and the cheap. Not coming for the work and the service and the experience that's being provided. So I would prefer, my philosophy has always been, and still is, I would prefer to do it for free because I love what I do, than to cheapen it. And I refuse to cheapen my stuff. So I just don't believe in discounts. I think there ways that you can do, again, this is very business-specific. I am, again, speaking as a hairdresser here. There are different ways if I speak to a different bunch of business owners or entrepreneurs about different ways that you can run promotions, loyalty programs, market in a different way, package and do bundles in your business that can help different types of businesses, but you're asking me specifically about that philosophy and that started because I talked about my industry. Discounting in life is the same thing. Why am I gonna cheapen myself? So when I said this morning, don't discount yourself. Show up, listen. May not all work out for you or be applicable but I hope there's a nugget in there or something just landed for you and you know, you went yes, that's what I needed to hear. That made it worth it for you. And when you discount yourself, whether it's taking praise and a compliment from someone. And kind of giving it back or oh yeah, these old things, I've had them forever. You discount yourself because you've got two kids. That's amazing, right? That's something that should be, that's a big deal. You're raising a family. You've got two kids. You've discounted yourself like oh yeah, (mumbles) no. That's what I mean by discounting yourself. You shouldn't be cheapened either and you shouldn't do it to yourself. It's bad enough when other people do it to you. You definitely shouldn't do it to yourself. And just on that, you have to remember that people treat you the way you give them permission to treat you. That's how people treat you. So if you give permission to treat, you know, other people permission to treat you in a certain way, often, it's because they see you treat yourself in that way. Think about this. If you're in a relationship, and you're talking to someone and you're always putting yourself down. Oh, I'm fat and I'm ugly. I'm this and I'm that and I'm stupid and whatever it is. I know I'm going to the extreme, but there's this constant diatribe of putting yourself down and that shows to the other person that I don't think I'm of value. I'm telling you I'm not of value 'cause I've just spent this whole five minutes telling you that I'm not. How the hell can they think you're of value? They can't. That's why it's important. What you believe in your head is what you put out in your words and into the world, and what you project. The same with your staff. You know, if you are acting like you don't know what you're doing, that's what your staff are going to know and that's what they're going to pick up on. Any other questions? Yes.
When you're busy and driven and 100 percent dedicated to your business, as you are and as you talk about and we see all your shows. How do you ensure that you are also nurturing your personal relationships, partners, you know, family, how are you making sure that they don't suffer in the way of your drive?
That's a great question and that's something that I have definitely struggled with. Like, really just definitely struggled with because my life was my job, and my partner was there, but my life was my job. And it was just flat out, full out, all the way. And it is making time. And sometimes, it has to be scheduled. And I tell this to people, and they're like, that's so weird to schedule a date with someone or schedule together time. That's okay, we're all busy, but when you make that commitment, that this is what, if it's every Wednesday at seven. It's dinner or movie night or pizza night or whatever it is, but it has to be every Wednesday at seven. It can't be, well, this Wednesday I'm too busy because I've got a client and I've got something and I can't do it. It's non-negotiable. Because if you can't schedule that and stick to it, then you're not valuing the other person either. And it is something that I really struggled with. One of, God, I'm just. You're all gonna leave here and go, oh my God, she's so wussy. (audience laughing) Totally my street cred. I'm kidding. One of the things that I struggled with a lot was my mother was sick and I wasn't there. I was filming a TV show. It took a really long time for me to get over because I knew she was sick. I mean, I checked in every day. She wasn't left alone, but I wasn't there. I needed to be there and I wasn't. And I came home from, you know, when I say film a TV show. It was like months, six months on the road. It's not a week in and a week out. It's six months on the road. And I came home, and was just really bizarre. Got in late. My mother asked me to make dinner. Went to the store, got everything to make dinner the next day. And I still don't really kind of know what happened, except she waited for me and never got out of bed again. So, I had this incredible, just, you know set with this guilt and it was a wake-up call. That's why when I talk about things, they're always from personal experience. That wake-up call was, Jesus Christ. You know, you just missed all of this. You could have been here and had a little bit more time and been more active. So you have to make the time. And I think that we all struggle with that. We all struggle with making that time because we think there's tomorrow. Or we think someone will stick around because they know our heart's in the right place. Sometimes when it's a partner and spouse, oh, they'll ride it out. They know my heart's in the right place. They know I love them. Well, yes, they may. Intellectually, we may know that. But you also feel lonely. You also have needs. You also want a partner and someone to communicate with. So schedule it. It's a great question. Because we all go down that rabbit hole. Pass it down. You guys are great. I love this. It's like rounders with the microphone. It's fantastic.
I think after processing everything we learned today, as we filter, like, I'll talk for myself. I know that there's certain personal and professional relationships I may have to edit that causes me a great deal of anxiety. So I was wondering, from your experience, do you have any advice on how to gracefully close those personal and professional doors that may interfere with your goals?
It's not easy. And I do it gently. You know, sometimes when your values change, and you realize that you can't be around certain people because they're too negative or they are just a downer, they're a Debbie Downer too much and they're bringing you down all the time. Or they're an energy-sucker. Whatever it is that, all of a sudden, you realize has to be out of that boundary, you often find that when you change, they pull away. This natural thing. It's a magnet thing, that as soon as you start to change and it can be as, I don't know your situation, so I'm using hypotheticals. It may be as simple as if someone, you know, throws words around like you don't like or speaks in front of you in a certain way or takes advantage of you. No, I'm really sorry. That's not acceptable for me anymore. I can't do this for free. No, I'm sorry. It's not acceptable for you to call me this time of night. No, sorry, it's not acceptable for you to do that anymore. But we can talk tomorrow, or you can make an appointment or you can pay for your haircut. As soon as you start to put those boundaries up, and you can do it in a nice way, you realize who is there because they're there for you and who is not. And it starts to become easier. So I think you can do those things gradually, which is how I have done them, unless it's someone that you just need out. And then you have to get them out if it's not healthy. Does that help?
Thank you, it does.
You had talked earlier about managing expectations and managing your own expectations and not putting them on other people. I feel like I could be a master class just for me but, and I realized, you know, over the years, that I'm not as easy going as I like to project. I really am opinionated and I do wanna be in control of things and I find myself struggling with that expectation piece and I just wondered, can you talk a little bit more about that toolkit aspect and maneuvering through that, growing through that?
As I said with expectations, they're ours. So you can tell someone what I need from you is. Here is what I need from you. Let's have a conversation about what I feel like isn't working. What I feel like needs to happen. Or just what I need, right? Depends on who you're talking to. What the context is. There's nothing wrong with that. If you're talking to staff, here's what I need. Here's what the rules are. Here's why we're doing this, and this is what I need you to do to take steps to get there. Because, and I'm a control freak, so I know what that feels like, that you have to control everything. The problem is, the only thing that you can really control is yourself. That's the big ha-ha-jokes-on-you control freak. You can only control yourself. You can't control anyone else. So now what are you gonna do? And when you realize that, it's actually a little easier because you can only control yourself and be in charge of yourself and it stops doing your head in, because it's so frustrating, if you like to control things so much that no one else is doing it the way you would be doing. Why would you put that over there when it should go over there? It's three degrees to the left, not four degrees to the right. Like, right? We do our heads in with it. So, our expectations are really our own. But I think when you're having conversations with someone, to say, I expect from you, I need from you, it changes the way they receive the information as well. Because, whether you're talking to, I've had people tell me with their children as well. It helps. Instead of expecting, I need. Here's what I need from you. Because as soon as you do that, you've brought them into the conversation. When you're telling someone you expect from them, it sounds like an order, right? 'cause it kind of is, 'cause you're a control freak. Problem is that you expect them to do it the way you want them to do it. That's not gonna work. So when you say, I need, you've drawn them into the conversation. All of a sudden, they've opened themselves up because it doesn't feel like you're just putting the hammer down, right, and telling them what to do all the time.
I guess my question is, obviously, you've redefined the word bitch and given it a new acronym to make it a much more positive definition. As people move past this course and utilize the tools. As they become more bold, more resilient and improve themselves, which is, of course, the intent of the course, have you found yourself in situations where you've been empowered to actually be honest and direct with people and then, their reactions have led you to either question how honest you were or just to deal with the emotional aspect of how they ended up feeling with how candid and honest you were with them? 'cause that can sometimes be a very difficult thing for people to hear, and I know for me, personally, when I'm that direct and honest with people, it can be off-putting and at times, afterwards, I'm like, should I have said it, shouldn't I have said it, did they really need to hear it? And how do you suggest people move forward with just their feelings after that, as somebody who's done it yourself?
For me, I'm always honest. But I always look at hard conversation, because that's where it comes down. You know that the other person may not be open to it or it's going to be challenging and difficult for them to hear, right? So, that's where I use empathy and look at what are they going to feel like? And what's the outcome I want? What is the outcome? Do I wanna burn a bridge? Do I wanna build a bridge? Do I want to change the behavior? Am I doing, am I presenting it and saying it in the right way and using the right words? Because sometimes, it's not the way we do it, it's the words we choose. So when I know what my end result is that I want, what that intention is that I wanna give to them and how I hope it will land, and then I can think about choosing the right words to present it to them. And when it's hard, and it's a critique, it's good to talk about the things that they're doing well. And think about you, right? When someone's just at you and you did this wrong and you did that wrong, and you're mean and you're this and you're tall and you're this and you're bald and you've got black pants on and your boot, like, when just people come at you, it's just woo, it's just too much. And then you start to close down. You get angry. You get defensive. And you get mean. That's what comes back out because someone's just come at you. What happens when someone just comes at you? You get fight or flight, right? Fight. That's what happens. So when you think about what your intention is to have that conversation, but give them a compliment. And I don't mean a fake compliment blowing smoke up their ass. I don't mean that. We can all see through that stuff now. We know what that looks like. Truly. I value you as a work colleague. I appreciate all the time that you've spent on this project. Don't do but, 'cause you know as soon as someone hears but, what does that mean? Something's gonna happen! Right, as soon as you hear but, right, totally. So as soon as you say the but, all the good things you've said before, they're at the window 'cause they're waiting for the hammer to drop. So yes, give them a compliment. Tell them something truly, genuinely, that they do well, and then move on. We need to have this discussion. It will be challenging for both of us. Right, be honest. That's where vulnerability comes in as well. And then deliver you know, whatever the message is that you have to deliver. And I think, look at the intention. Look at the words, because certain words land in a different way and can be much more painful than other words. Anyone else have a burning question that you've been dying to ask me all day?
Stood in those shoes all day.
Oh, thank you!
I'm admiring them.
These are little heels, so. They're actually really comfortable, but thank you! No questions? Yes? Let me get a microphone down to you. Wanna make sure that I get all your questions in.
So, when you were going through everything you went through. I'm Janice, by the way, hi. Sorry, so when you were going through your changes and you went through your emotional things, as you started to reinvent yourself, did you go to, like, a therapist and did you just, you know, to get those things out, I'm just asking. What method and ways did you continue to tell yourself these things, to get the track out your head? To kind of start reinventing who Tabatha was.
That's a great question. So, obviously I shared a little bit of this. Are you guys all right if I talk about me for a second? It's really boring, but let me tell you. It might answer it. I told you what happened with my partner, and that was it, the world stopped. The world had to stop. So, it was nine months of chemo and radiation every day. And just a lot of things. I could not go back to work, so I walked away from everything. I walked away from my show. I walked away from life, basically. And I pretty much went into just a cave. And the cave was taking care of her. When it was time to come out of the cave, some time had passed, and it was interesting because when I tried to come back out of the cave, enough time had passed that people wanted me to be different, wanted me to be the same, but just, you know, a newer version, fresher version. I started to not know what to do. Like, I didn't know if I could get a job in TV again. Wasn't a guarantee. The couple of years when I was gone, it's a big change in the industry. It's a fast-moving industry. Things change really quickly. I didn't know if I could get another job. I didn't know if I wanted to do it again. I didn't know what I wanted to do, and all of these questions just started to kind of barrel towards me, and I was in a really dark place. Like, really, really just dark, dark place. It was a lot emotionally, obviously, with everything that was going on, and I felt that my purpose, because my identity, you know, who I am, was hard-worker, worked all the time. You know, whether it was making a TV show or doing hair, or, it's just who I am. So a lot of my identity was very wrapped up in that. And it was hard to know what I wanted to do. And if I wanted to do what I did before, and I decided that I love my industry and I will never walk away from it, but I couldn't be behind the chair all the time just because of my situation at home because of care and doing that, and I didn't know if I wanted, there were all of these things. It was just total confusion for me to know what to do. And everything I talked about with you today, I did. I did not go to therapy. Not for any reason except I have always been a self-processor. I process myself well. I started as a kid. And I would process myself and check in with myself and not everything made sense, but I would work through things. As I got older, because of the situation I was in and what had happened and because it threw the brakes on really quickly, it brought everything up to the surface. So I started to question, was I really happy? Was I really enjoying doing it anymore? Do I really wanna go back to it? What do I wanna do, because now I am getting older so I'm getting to a different phase in my life. How much do I need to survive? What if this isn't gonna happen? What am I going to do? And I had a lot of no's. There were a lot of no's, of people saying no, which I'd never experience before so it was a whole new thing for me and I was kind of resting on what I'd had before and thinking it would work. And my self-esteem was shot to shit. It really was. It was shot to hell. Between the fact that I was at home all the time, so it didn't matter what I looked like. You know, it didn't matter if I had cute heels on or not or if I got dressed or, it didn't matter because I wasn't presenting myself to anyone and to be honest, I wasn't even looking at myself. I was so tunnel visioned on what I was going through and my task at hand, and my task at hand was trying to make sure that my partner got through what she was going through, that I became consumed. I read everything and did everything and really became consumed until the fog kind of dissipated and it looked like we were out of the woods and things were starting to get better, and all of sudden, I was like a bear. I woke up from this long sleep and I was like, shit, the landscape has totally changed. So that brought all of those things up and that is really when I had dabbled in meditation before. I had dabbled in journaling before. I had always been self aware. I really started to look inside myself. I really started to practice. That I could have a daily practice and journal and meditate. I started to look at what my purpose was and what I loved. What I realized I loved and I love to do hair and I love my hairdressers, but what I realized I loved is people, and being with people. And I love the industry, and I really love the business aspect of it. And helping with people's business, but really helping with themselves and helping them to feel better. And the reason I became a hairdresser was because I would go to the salon with my mum every Saturday and she'd get her weekly blowout and I was a fat little kid that was picked on at school all the time and didn't really fit in and didn't really have like a little tribe or group of friends or a place to call my own and when I'd sit in the salon and watch people come in, women would come in one way and it wasn't the physical, how they'd looked, but they'd often walk in like this. Shoulders hunched, head down. And you'd see them in the chair and they'd start laughing and smiling and enjoying themselves and open up a little bit more and it was this community. There was this community feeling in there. By the time women left, their shoulders were back, you know, boobs were out a little, little wiggle in the step, and they walked out smiling and you could tell that even if it was just this momentary fleeting second, that they felt really good about themselves. They just felt really good about themselves and I equated that to a hairdresser. And when I was a kid, I didn't feel good about myself. So that was a really powerful thing to see happen. And that's why I got into the industry and that's why I still love it but the thing that I realized is, I'm getting older and I want to change a little bit as well, is that what I really love is helping people feel better about themselves. That's what I've, that's what I know about myself now. It took my a while to figure that out. Yes, I love to do hair. I still do hair. I love the tactile, it's the artist in me and I love doing that. But what I really love, what gets me out of bed now, what got me out of bed when my partner was really sick and not doing well, was every day, I wanted to help her and find something to make her feel better about herself to keep her going and do that with other people. I would sometimes sit in the cancer center and just talk to people, and just start to give them advice whether they asked or not. I'd see someone crying and just go over. And tell them what I had just learned or what I'd gone through, even if it was different. Might be helpful. That book I read might be helpful to you. Right, here's what I tried and it actually seemed to work a little bit. So I realized that my purpose was actually helping people. And it plays into the caregiver in me. I know that I've always been a caregiver and I think part of working on yourself, sometimes you need someone else. Sometimes you need a coach. There's nothing wrong with that, it's great. I actually have a coach now. I never thought that I would probably say that. If you need a coach, if you need a doctor, if you need someone to help you work it through, there is nothing wrong with that. Sometimes the best place to look is outside of yourself if you need a little support, because when we go to our family and the people that love us, they're not always the best cheerleaders, because they love us, right? So they don't want us to change either, 'cause that sends their critter brain to hell. But they also wanna keep us safe. So you know, they may not be always the encouraging people we want them to be if we say, we're starting a business or we're dating this person or if we're looking at doing that, just because they wanna protect us. So, that part of my journey and what I've gone through and other things that we'll save for another day, with part of the story has made me do a lot of self discovery and all of this work I talked about and all of the things are things that I had been doing with clients that I work with, with businesses that I take over. You know, just naturally, anyway, and really started working on it and working on it for myself, and started to see the difference. Because the narrative in my head was pretty ugly and it was that I was old, fat, washed up, would never get a job. Like, it was a pretty ugly narrative. And it didn't take much to go down the rabbit hole. All it took for me was to pick up and go on social media for two seconds or go on Twitter and have someone say something about me and they just well, see it's right! This one person here said it, so it must be true! You know, that's what we do to ourselves. There could be 100 comments on there that are all great, positive comments, but that one, oh, well, yeah, no. That bad one's the right one. That's what we do, and that's what I was doing. And it was through self reflection and readjusting. That's why I talked about what challenges and difficulties do you have? My challenges didn't go away. I'm still dealing with them now, but it's how I had to adjust to deal with them so that I could fulfill myself, build my self-esteem up. I realized that, again, can't serve from an empty vessel. And whatever adjustments needed to be made to just maybe move the path around a little bit more and take the time, while always listening to what it is you need and what you're worth and what your value is, and we don't hear that enough and we don't do it to ourselves enough and I'm actually very proud to be able to stand here and do it, and share it with you. So that was part of the journey, actually ending with all of you guys today because I haven't taught this class before. It's a new class for me. I did it just in a group like this for Creative Live. So, it was scary as hell because it's new, and we've been working on it, I think since July last year, or August or something to get everything done and you know, just logistics and dates and things like that so I knew it was coming, and I was up all night. So, that's where the courage comes in. The fear wasn't gonna stop me, the courage was gonna get me through, and the worst thing that could have happened, as I said, is that I wasted your time, which I apologize for if that were the case, but I don't think I've had because we had a great conversation, right? And all of you have been so open and shared and shared some really great things that I've learnt from as well, and hopefully you have, and you can take that toolbox and you can use it and apply it where you need to apply it. And thank you, thank you for all sharing today with me. It was amazing. (applause) And make sure, social media. Let me know how it's going. It's me, I'm not fancy. I don't have peeps. It's just me, myself, and I. Reach out. It's me on social media. Tell me how the class was. Tell me what you're best part was. It's a great learning experience for me. And I wanna know what you guys are doing. How's the toolbox? What'd you pull out of it? I wanna know when you open your business, Paul. When you make the leap, I wanna hear all about it. I want you to check in and tell me what is going on. And thank you, honestly. It was an amazing day, so thank you.