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rapunzhell13
September 21st, 2008, 12:55 AM
Is anyone else growing their hair out, but struggling with a nagging sense of perfectionism? I know I won't get much further if I don't relax about the whole thing. I keep reminding myself that nobody's hair is absolutely perfect, no matter how well they take care of it. What is perfect anyhow? There is no such thing. Tell me I'm not alone and that there is hope, please. :o

peachrose
September 21st, 2008, 01:20 AM
You are certainly not alone... I too struggle with this but I find that if I start thinking something negative about my appearence I force myself to focus on the positive. Maybe you can try that... Good luck... Focus on the things you like about yourself, remember when you are an old lady you will probably have wished that you have been kinder to yourself!

Aditi
September 21st, 2008, 01:30 AM
I definitely agree with you peachrose. Everyone has their downside, nobody is perfect in this world not even celebrities. But you know what? our Flaws make us stand different among the crowd. Next time when you think that you are not perfect remind yourself that that's why you are different from others.

sahiba
September 21st, 2008, 01:40 AM
What is perfect anyhow? There is no such thing. Tell me I'm not alone and that there is hope, please. :o

I too would love to Know what is perfect .:) But as for your second part you are definitely not alone... I'm right there. Or here.;)

ChloeDharma
September 21st, 2008, 05:05 AM
Absolutely. I demand perfection from myself appearance wise and of course never achieve it and it's toxic hun because if you try to be perfect which nobody actually is then you just set yourself up for a perpetual feeling of failure.
I try to remind myself to only focus on what i do like as has been suggested. And the reminder of how when we are old we will wish we had appreciated what we had is so true.
What has also helped me is to try to see my appearance through other peoples eyes, i often get compliments and for years never believed them.....but in recent years have started to realise they were actually genuine and that's gone a long way to helping.
Another thing that hairwise made me realise i need to appreciate what i have was loosing masses of it, i'd spent ages whingeing and moaning about it, then realised i was lucky to have hair at all. I can guarantee that whatever you dislike about your hair, there will be someone looking at it and thinking "oh she's so lucky!"

Shanarana
September 21st, 2008, 05:20 AM
Is anyone else growing their hair out, but struggling with a nagging sense of perfectionism? I know I won't get much further if I don't relax about the whole thing. I keep reminding myself that nobody's hair is absolutely perfect, no matter how well they take care of it. What is perfect anyhow? There is no such thing. Tell me I'm not alone and that there is hope, please. :o

You know, I think most times we make more of an issue of things that most people don't even notice or care for that matter. Everyone tends to be wrapped up in their own stuff.

I think the key is in just accepting who and what we are and finding peace with that. We all have something to offer.

As far as hair goes.....many days I feel my hair is just crap and don't feel as good about myself those days. Than on other days when my hair looks good I feel like wonder woman....it's just our own perception of ourselves and that can always use adjusting from time to time. You are not alone, trust me.

Hope that made sense........just woke up and haven't had my quota of coffee yet. :)

Katze
September 21st, 2008, 06:05 AM
yes, absolutely. Especially with my hair, but also with my work and how much I get done in my life.

With my hair, I feel like no matter what I do, the old damage will haunt me forever, and that I am 'cursed' with genes for messy, fuzzy, unnruly hair that is almost impossible to get smooth and tidy looking...not to mention that it is fragile and I have a terrible cowlick that looks like a bald spot.

At work, I never feel like I'm good enough even though I have just been offered a permanent contract (I am a university lecturer) something that is VERY rare and hard to get. My apartment (and my life) is never as well-organized as I want it to be and I don't learn crafty stuff as fast as other people, nor do I have the lifelong experience with carpentry, sewing, leatherwork, smithing, etc. that many of our acquaintances have. Living in a foreign language means I am more shy that I'd like to be and that I get overwhelmed and tired more easily.

What is important to me is to be gentle with myself (and my hair) and be kind to myself. If I were a friend of mine, I would be kind, and say that my hair really is improving, that it will be long and look nice, and that all the things I do are quite an accomplishment.

paper
September 21st, 2008, 06:10 AM
Growing out layers, I feel like my hair looks awful every day! Sometimes, I think about cutting it off one length, then it will look good. But, your hair will never be perfect. You just have to enjoy what you have. I'm even learning to live with my frizzys and not trying to tame them anymore, or cringe when I see them in a mirror or picture lol.

Miss Hidley
September 21st, 2008, 06:15 AM
yeah I think its easy to be perfectionistic whilst its still growing out cos hair always seems to be more unruly in the transition phases. Don't worry though, I think it just SEEMS worse becuase you are paying more attention to it now that you're growing it out, and of course you know your hair better than anyone else's, so you can spot all its flaws better than you can with other people's. I think everyone here feels that way about their hair sometimes, I know I do..
good luck!

30isthenewblack
September 21st, 2008, 06:32 AM
Since joining a hair forum & often just sitting back & listening to the discussion, I've realised how people hold their hair up to impossible standards of perfection. I too have become more observant & looked at people's hair & realised that now I see imperfections whereas before I joined the hair forum, I saw none. Thus, I'm not sure it's been a positive thing in that sense. When you come to realisation as I did at a very early age that someone will always be younger, smarter, better looking, better dressed & have a better body than you, you will be content with your appearance & be satisfied with the person you are. I believe that you should always be focusing on self improvement & exercise, eat healthy & take care of your appearance but seeking perfection in any area of your life is not healthy. You need to make the best of what you have.

AJoifulNoise
September 21st, 2008, 07:25 AM
To a certain extent, yes. I screech at breakage and fly-aways. But, my perfectionism comes out more in the world of updos than anything else. If it's not perfect in my eyes, I can't leave the house (unless I totally give up, messy cinnabun it, and throw a bandana over the lot). So, no "messy buns" for me.

Tangles
September 21st, 2008, 10:39 AM
yes, absolutely. Especially with my hair, but also with my work and how much I get done in my life.

At work, I never feel like I'm good enough even though I have just been offered a permanent contract (I am a university lecturer) something that is VERY rare and hard to get. My apartment (and my life) is never as well-organized as I want it to be and I don't learn crafty stuff as fast as other people, nor do I have the lifelong experience with carpentry, sewing, leatherwork, smithing, etc. that many of our acquaintances have. Living in a foreign language means I am more shy that I'd like to be and that I get overwhelmed and tired more easily.


Wow, CONGRATS Katze! A baby on the way and tenure... how much better does it get :eyebrows:

Silver & Gold
September 21st, 2008, 10:48 AM
This kind of thought is what kept me in the cutting cycle. I kept trying to have my hair look perfect at every stage of hair growth and my answer was always to try and alter the style with a haircut. First cutting in layers to disguise bangs growing out then cutting to blunt the ends because of layers growing out and too thin on the ends. I just kept cutting.
I've figured that my hair is going to look bad for a period of time while it is growing out so I've taught myself updos that disguise any bad hair day. And I realize that this skill will be good even when my hair gets past the awkward stages of growth because everyone has a bad hair day even when their hair generally looks good.
So, not more cutting to solve a bad hair day. It's working for me so far.

harpgal
September 21st, 2008, 10:50 AM
There is a big difference between perfectionism and the quest for excellence. For my part it is all about how much I enjoy my hair, not whether or not it appears perfect. Nothing in nature is perfect.

The quest for excellence involves a journey in nurturing and cultivating beauty for our tresses (and yes, that goes for guys as well). It is the ongoing care and enjoyment that goes along with having very long hair, as well as all the diversity it offers.

Furthermore, it has nothing to do with the length but everything to do with the happiness we gain from our hair.

nicolezoie
September 21st, 2008, 02:46 PM
Is anyone else growing their hair out, but struggling with a nagging sense of perfectionism? I know I won't get much further if I don't relax about the whole thing. I keep reminding myself that nobody's hair is absolutely perfect, no matter how well they take care of it. What is perfect anyhow? There is no such thing. Tell me I'm not alone and that there is hope, please. :o


At various points in my various growing-out phases, I'd get fixated on things that seemed off and unbalanced, and so on and so forth. I'm a wavy and my quantity of wave is NEVER the same two days in a row, and trying to achieve yesterday's waves today is a joke; I know that NOW, but back when it was shorter, I'd fuss-n-bother-n-fuss-bother nonstop, to the point of actually CAUSING more damage. So um, yeah, perfectionism is pointless when it comes to your hair. You'll never get anywhere, and it may even become counterproductive. Hope this helps you out. :)

Chromis
September 21st, 2008, 03:09 PM
Since joining a hair forum & often just sitting back & listening to the discussion, I've realised how people hold their hair up to impossible standards of perfection. I too have become more observant & looked at people's hair & realised that now I see imperfections whereas before I joined the hair forum, I saw none. Thus, I'm not sure it's been a positive thing in that sense. When you come to realisation as I did at a very early age that someone will always be younger, smarter, better looking, better dressed & have a better body than you, you will be content with your appearance & be satisfied with the person you are. I believe that you should always be focusing on self improvement & exercise, eat healthy & take care of your appearance but seeking perfection in any area of your life is not healthy. You need to make the best of what you have.

This! I don't understand getting so upset over hair. I doubt anyone is going to lie on their deathbed thinking, man I wish my hair hadn't been so frizzy on June 17, 2003!

I'd suggest finding things you can do when your hair isn't being cooperative. I have some styles I only attempt when it is behaving perfectly and others that will work anytime.

basak
September 21st, 2008, 04:00 PM
Perfectionism is the best trait you can have if you know when to stop fighting with what's unstoppable and start going along with it.

FrannyG
September 21st, 2008, 04:09 PM
Learning to give up the quest for perfection has been the biggest lesson I've learned here. I never let my hair's condition bother me to the extent that it does bother some LHCers, but at the same time I held an unrealistic set of expectations.

I do know now that it's normal for hair to have splits once it hits a certain length. It's normal to have a taper. It's normal to have tangles.

At the same time, I value quality over quantity, so my goals change, and when I recently did something damaging to my hair, I cut off five inches without a second thought.

However, I do know that my hair can be the best it can be without being perfect, and I'm not nearly as harsh about my own hair as I used to be in my early days at LHC.

Suitsuki
September 21st, 2008, 04:55 PM
I'm a perfectionist.. the negative way. I tend to obsess over little things (whether it's about hair, life, or anything else), but only if I'm by myself, or worst, bored. I need to keep my mind busy. :D

I try not to except much from my hair, and neglect it (benignly [sp?]) as much as I can. And I don't measure, if I did, I'm sure I'd freak out for the smallest change in growth..

Still, being satisfied only with the best choices is useful sometimes.. it's all about control.

Tangles
September 21st, 2008, 05:07 PM
This kind of thought is what kept me in the cutting cycle. I kept trying to have my hair look perfect at every stage of hair growth and my answer was always to try and alter the style with a haircut. First cutting in layers to disguise bangs growing out then cutting to blunt the ends because of layers growing out and too thin on the ends. I just kept cutting.
I've figured that my hair is going to look bad for a period of time while it is growing out so I've taught myself updos that disguise any bad hair day. And I realize that this skill will be good even when my hair gets past the awkward stages of growth because everyone has a bad hair day even when their hair generally looks good.
So, not more cutting to solve a bad hair day. It's working for me so far.

Yeah, in my mind, layers lead to a lot of vicious cycles. I think if I had a friend considering layers, my advice would be to grow her hair REALLY long and then cut in layers... so if she didn't like them she could just cut it back to blunt.

Medvssa
September 21st, 2008, 06:39 PM
Curly hair is so obviously not "perfect" that I don't think I've ever given thought to having perfect hair :) I like it wild!

rapunzhell13
September 21st, 2008, 11:26 PM
Thank you for all the replies. :) It's just so easy to get caught up in the vicious cycle of perfectionism, even though I'm fully aware of how destructive it can be. My strategy right now is to just wear it up as much as I can and give myself long periods of time before doing anything I might regret. Good luck to everyone else going through this and good luck to myself too!

DarkChocolate
September 22nd, 2008, 12:59 PM
I have become a hair perfectionist too. I am now always looking for bent ends and splits. I get upset if I am ever finger combing and hear a snap. I treat my hair very well using Burt's bees shampoo and conditioning with coconut oil and jojoba oil. I also have a Boar Bristle brush. My hair obsession started after my mom sheered it all off up to my shoulders to 'try' something different. This was when I was 21 and I continued to let her trim it until May 2006. I have always had tailbone length hair and now I feel that it is so short.

MsBubbles
September 22nd, 2008, 01:23 PM
What I've learned on this subject is to quit comparing my hair negatively with somebody else's (usually a longer, thicker, healthier version than mine). I have also learned that the camera can indeed lie and that one photo of someone else's seemingly perfect hair can just be one lucky shot of their hair! I saw a good church sign yesterday that read: Do your best and leave the rest.

It helps to have a 'big picture' (long term goal) in mind, so you don't get caught up in the everyday frizzies/splits/flyaways/mismatched roots!

Hue
September 22nd, 2008, 02:17 PM
There is a big difference between perfectionism and the quest for excellence. ... The quest for excellence involves a journey in nurturing and cultivating beauty for our tresses (and yes, that goes for guys as well). ...Furthermore, it has nothing to do with the length but everything to do with the happiness we gain from our hair.

Well put, harpgal.

I've been thinking a lot about perfectionism, sparked in part by this quotation:


Perfectionism is not a quest for the best. It is a pursuit of the worst in ourselves, the part that tells us that nothing we do will ever be good enough - that we should try again.

--Julia Cameron


I used to publicly bemoan being a perfectionist -- "so Type A" -- while privately rather priding in it. It seems like an accomplishment at superficial glance, as if one has the highest standards. In truth, though, I think it is a way of pursuing the worst in ourselves, the unhappy part, and a very deft way of avoiding responsibility at times: I won't be satisfied if it isn't perfect, but there is no perfect, so I won't even get started / hold myself responsible for planning and reaching achievable goals / feel bad about not trying (because at least I'm the one with high standards), etc.

So much different than the pursuit of excellence. Ultimately, so much easier than the pursuit of excellence.

At least, that has been my experience, for what it's worth.