For as long as I can remember I had identified myself as a woman with long hair. I know some women who change the length of their hair fairly often or always have short hair. I had always felt that this wasn’t me. I never put much thought into this feeling. It was just how I was: Charlotte with long hair.
Until my lovely neighbour Jenny from Oh Hey! hosted a hair cutting party for our neighbours. I was just going to get a trim, as I always did but when my turn came, Jenny excitedly said “I know the perfect haircut for you, that I’d just love to do. But it’s short. It’s a pixie cut”. Jenny was just so excited, sure and positive in her belief that this cut would work for me. And I trusted her. In the past few years, since I’ve been working on letting go of so much of my "good girl" conditioning, I’ve been purposefully trying to live my life more by what just feels right, rather than what I think I should be doing. I just felt myself being seduced by this idea, that felt right. And, what’s the worse could happen? If I didn’t like having short hair, I just had to wait for it to grow back.
As I said “OK. Go for it!” to Jenny, I had this feeling come over me, that I can only describe as "zingy" ... like sherbet on my tongue, but throughout my body, almost like a schoolgirl who was about to do something that she knew would be disapproved of, but it felt so right and exciting to her. That was breaking one of the unspoken, and undefined societal rules, that everyone knew existed despite no one ever speaking it. When Jenny showed me the finished cut in the mirror, I had the biggest smile on my face. The smile was so strong and came from such a deep, intrinsic place. Even if I had wanted to try and suppress that smile from my face, I wouldn’t have been able to.
All our neighbours were showering Jenny and I with compliments about what a great haircut it was, and how much it suited me. But those comments, although nice to hear, seemed to just bounce off me. Something deep inside me was feeling so good with the decision to follow what felt right, that other people’s positive comments meant very little.
After the hair cutting event was over, and we all went back to our own homes, I became increasingly curious as to the strong feeling of excitement, freedom and naughtiness that I was still feeling that afternoon. That "zingy" feeling was still in my body. I decided to try some EFT tapping on myself to try and calm the feelings I was experiencing in my body. Normally the “tapping” part of Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) is only really used for negative emotions, but I was curious what would come up for me if I used EFT on myself to try and calm these strong, yet positive feelings I was experiencing and explore what was behind them.
It is amazing what can happen when our emotional responses are calmed, and our minds are freer. It didn’t take long at all for a memory to come back to me. The memory was of my mother telling me that I wasn’t pretty enough to have short hair. Soon after, other childhood memories filled my mind. Family members would often pass judgment on others based on their looks. I feared that judgement and the conditional acceptance it came with.
I contacted some colleagues and arranged for some EFT and Matrix Reimprinting sessions with me as the client, so we could work through healing the impact these events I both experienced first hand and witnessed, had on me and to continue to free me from the fear of judgement.
But I wouldn't stop thinking about what is being “pretty enough?” Who holds the right to judge what that is, what that means, and whether that means you can or cannot have your hair a certain length. Would anyone ever be pretty enough anyway?
It reminds me from a scene in the film That Awkward Moment.
Jason: Then in the summers you drive up to the Hampton to meet his parents wondering the whole ride if they're going to think you're pretty enough.
Jason: Wondering the whole ride if they're going to think you're smart enough.
Ellie: Because no one is and then we have to drink shitty chardonnay.
Jason: At a shitty garden party.
Ellie: And have shitty conversations.
Jason: About shitty people.
Ellie: With his shitty mother.
Jason: Who let's face it doesn't think you're smart enough.
Jason: Let's face it, doesn't think you're pretty enough.
Ellie: Because no one is.
Jason: No one ever will be.
It’s been 2 years since I had my hair cut short. In that time, I have had so many compliments from friends and strangers alike.
But do you know whose opinion of my haircut I value the most? Mine. Because really, doesn’t it only matter what I think of my hair? And I like it. And what I like more, is the internal acceptance of myself that I am finding bit by bit, and that was demonstrated to me with breaking out of my limiting belief that I could only have long hair. After all what really is being pretty enough?
Charlotte Watson is the mother of two spirited children who have their cut or not cut anyway they choose! She is also an Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) Practitioner who specializes in working with parents all over the world via Skype, who struggle to feel good enough. She believes in the power of validation, empathy and meeting people where they are at with their feelings and experiences. That our feelings and emotions can help guide us understanding what’s important to us, but they shouldn’t overwhelm or control us.
These beliefs are held at the cornerstones of her EFT Practice where she supports mums who do not feel good enough, are overwhelmed, struggling or triggered by past traumas, to be able to parent with confidence and clarity, and just feel good enough.
Visit her website at http://www.charlotterwatson.com and find her on Facebook, or book a free 20 minute phone or Skype call with her to learn how her EFT practice can help you to feel like a good enough parent.
Photo Credit: Apple Star Photos