So when the #Blogtober14 prompt yesterday was for the best advice you've ever been given, I immediately drew a blank. I would love to have a mind full of memories in which dear people imparted wisdom that stuck with me, but really only one really stuck out. I believe it stuck with me because I heard it so much over a year's time.
I spent a year learning the cosmetology basics at Fremont Beauty College, an institution that left much to be desired. From the 1970's style classroom set ups, to the less than stellar product assortment, the place was kind of a dump. The reason I chose to do my year-long cosmetology course there was simple: they had an open night program when I needed one, and the tuition was offset by a county grant, which meant I would only pay a fraction of the cost, already much lower than many of the schools that were closer to me and more prestigious. So off to Fremont I would go each evening and all day on Saturdays, fighting commute traffic and wasting an hour of my afternoon in the car. Eight months I spent doing this before I was able to transfer to the day program for my last four months of school.
One of my instructors, a beautiful and sassy black lady named Ms. McInnis (funny how she was African-American, yet had a very Irish or Scottish sounding last name), was full of spunk and loaded with catchy phrases. She would provide assistance, instruction, and offered us a laugh when we found a situation stressful. During those stressful moments, after offering her opinion on how to correct a mistake or how to go about achieving the magic some client was asking for, she would laugh and remind you of a small piece of advice she gave freely: "You gotta fake it till you make it".
Maybe hearing this at first, I missed the full meaning of it, but after a year of hearing it regularly, it finally hit me. In order to be successful and make people trust in your skills, you have to project that you know what you are doing and are already successful. Ms. McInnis knew this, and was able to sum it up in an inspirational poster kind of way.
I took it to heart when I applied for apprenticeship and assistant positions at salons. Fresh out of beauty school and holding my state license, I only had my intuition and a year's worth of half-decent school behind me. I needed those salon jobs to hone my craft and figure out just what I needed to be a better hairstylist. I would learn a lot while I was assisting, and I would figure it out, eventually.
|Sorry for the blurry photo, it's the only one I have with my beauty school diploma|