My favourite colours are blue and purple, and at different times in life I love one more than the other 😂. So for the last 3 or 4 years purple has beaten blue to the post. My love for purple got SO intense that long story short I damaged my long, beautiful natural hair trying to lighten it so when I eventually dyed my hair purple it would show up (which it didn’t really).
The damage came when I dyed my mane too many times in the space of 2/3 months – my hair would become super dry very quickly and the ends tangled. As a result I made the decision to “trim” my hair to see if it would help, then cut it quite short over a year ago AND not dye it for a good while until I could re-maintain the health of my hair.
I thought it was going to take me a while to love my new length (shout out to my sister Ef who cut my hair for me), but it was a quick transition! I’d always been curious to see what I’d look like with short hair aaaaaand shorter hair meant quicker wash days! This journey has also helped me to really analyse what does and doesn’t work for my hair in terms of products and wash technique.
Back in Summer this year I decided with wisdom and taking on some advice I initially ignored from Ef to dye my hair again using a purple shade from Schwarzkopf. I think I used Live Colour Mystic Violet and when I had finished with my hair, I could hear my sister in my head saying: I TOLD YOU SO! I could SEE the purple! My husband could see the purple! You can probably imagine how excited I was.
With my head held high I went into work a couple of days later hoping that people would compliment me on my new hair colour, and that those who knew my journey would even congratulate me on my success!
Nothing. I was very confused.
So I started to question myself, thinking that I was seeing things. My eyes were deceiving me. But as I thought about it more and looked back at previous experiences, I came to the conclusion that maybe my hair was doing that thing it does when you can’t see the colour unless you’re in certain light, or maybe the colour hadn’t developed enough.
And I was right. People started to notice the colour change when I sat in certain places and in the later months.
This experience highlighted THREE things to me:
1 Why was I so bothered people couldn’t see what I could see?! Why was I disheartened that those who normally notice a change in hair style for me didn’t notice the change in hue?
I honestly think it was because of my failure in previous efforts, I wanted validation that I had succeeded. However, I didn’t NEED that validation to prove that my hair colour change was successful. It was successful because it happened. It was successful WITHOUT people’s say so.
2 Sometimes people won’t see your success until you positioned in a specific place or place of development.
I think of OG YouTubers who have been in the game FOR YEARS and there are people now who are only just witnessing their successes when they had been winning for years!
3 There are some that have gone before you and have learnt from their mistakes. Listen to them… with wisdom.
I honestly thought my hair wouldn’t take the hair dye my sister suggested because of my hair texture, but what I really should have done is listened to my younger sister. She had already tried and tested hair dyes and knew which ones would bring the most colour pay off. If I would have listened to her in the first place, I wouldn’t have damaged my hair and therefore would still have my long puffy hair! However I can say it was a good experience having my hair short too and now I appreciate taking care of it more and have refined my wash days and product list.
My brother, my sister – know that validation does not come from people alone. Know that you can be successful WITHOUT the crowd acknowledging it. Yes the attention can be nice but that should NEVER be the primary focus. Here’s the thing to think about: when you take the praise of man away, what are you left with?
Know that some of your wins will only be seen in certain areas of light. And even with that, if people see it and don’t say give any form of acknowledgment, don’t be disheartened. Keep going! You are a winner regardless.
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