Fear plus inertia equals stagnation… or worse, regression. And not just in the Big Life Issues, either – I believe it holds true in all sorts of areas. For me, over the past couple of years, it’s been the case in a very silly, seemingly unimportant area of my life:
I like the idea of going to the salon – taking care of yourself, being pampered, feeling pretty – but I’ve always been rather intimidated by the process. Everyone is so attractive, and fashionably well-dressed, and focused on appearances. I’m, well, not! Plus I’m shy with new people, a rather awkward small-talker, and not up on any of the popular TV shows or celebrities that everyone at most salons seems to want to discuss.
I can get past all that, though – at least for the hour or two it takes to complete whatever process I’ve signed up for – when I’m feeling confident about myself. Unfortunately, for me, my level of self-confidence increases only as the number on the scale decreases, and prior to our recent move, my weight had soared to its highest ever. As you can well imagine, my self-confidence had plummeted to a new low, and my desire to pick up the phone and book an appointment for a haircut decreased daily.
So my hair grew… and grew… and grew – for two years without so much as a trim – until it reached the longest it had ever been in my life (and for a person with fine, curly hair, that’s really not a good thing). It looked horrible, and I knew I needed to deal with it, but the fear/inertia equation took effect and paralyzed me into stagnation/regression.
Empowered by a great start at weight loss (38 lbs, thank you very much!), abundant happiness with life in a new city, meeting new friends and starting to build a social life, I pushed past the fear and booked an appointment for a long-past-due haircut.
And you know what? After all that anxiety and trepidation, it was a great experience! The salon recommended by a friend was small and intimate, the stylist and assistant were friendly and approachable, and I left feeling better, lighter, prettier than I had in years.
Why did I wait so long?!