Looking for a Slow Clean

The headache has been here for three days. On and off. Major movements are the biggest problem; bending over and picking something off the floor, for example. Today I decided to move every piece of furniture in my apartment excluding the bedroom, TV and scary/large bookcase that only physically fits in two places and the one it’s in is really the best. I needed to think differently. 

But physical labour with a headache like this wasn’t my brightest idea. I must have put four new holes in the walls moving my artwork around, perching on the arm of the couch or the bed with a hammer and those little artwork hanging hooks you buy when you graduate from a random old nail.

Having little luxuries like the special artwork hanging hooks makes me feel like I’m really making something of my Adult Self.

While I was sweeping the dust out from under the couch, moving it exactly 180 degrees from where it previously was, my allergies went nuts. That really helped the headache.

Then I took a shower. I usually only take showers when I’m in a big hurry to get clean. Otherwise, I prefer being stretched in the tub reading or watching netflix on my tablet. Ya, it goes in the bath with me. I’m very careful. Besides, yogis have great muscle control – no unexpected splashes here. 

In the shower I found myself scrubbing my hair clean as if I was incredibly angry at my head. I was, in fact, hurting my head. I realized: That is How I Wash My Hair. All the time. And then I thought ahead to conditioner application, which is about as half-assed as it gets with me. I experimented with some products, none of which I liked, and now I’m back to a token dollop with a hasty, sad excuse for a conditioner application. 

And in case you’re wondering, yes, this post is all about me and my Saturday. Moving furniture and then taking a shower. That was approximately it. It led me to some rich, positive reflection, including work satisfaction and 90s TV.

I decided to turn down my hair wash speed by half. I literally went half the speed, and I thought about loving my hair, and gently massaging my head. What a difference! And then I took more conditioner than usual, and I carefully applied it to the parts of my hair that I know need it most…. what a novel concept, really. Genius.

Everything in the shower today was executed in half time. It was refreshing. When I stepped out, I was finally inspired.

Again, Pace resurfaces. Moving at half the normal pace. Breath.

I had another thought today, mostly thanks to the slow shower. That, and the Skin Deep book I’m reading. Dr. Grossbart says that a clue to your view of yourself is how you dress and how you present yourself. Obvious? Maybe. But I’m receptive to the reminder. I think we’ve all had the experience of putting time and effort into our appearances and feeling great as a result. For women it can be a double edged sword – when you spend time to look your best, it usually means covering yourself in face paint. And that isn’t necessarily the fast lane to self esteem. At least for me.

I thought that maybe if I applied my conditioner properly, I would have better hair, hair that I wanted out there in the open in my life, instead of tucked away in a bun all the time. Especially at work. And then I thought: by bun-ing my hair every day, I’m really saying this: work isn’t my real life. My real life happens outside of this place, where I can be my real self. But let’s face it: work is part of real life. And people who embrace that Have Good Hair at work. Make sense? Maybe it does. And maybe it doesn’t.

I had the pleasure of growing up in the 90s watching shows like Ally McBeal, in which Portia de Rossi played this vixen of a lawyer and always had her hair in a bun. And during after work drinks, she would uncoil it, dramatically, and shake it out into these long, glistening waves. She was my hair idol. She and Barbie. To a kid, they had the same hair.

So am I channeling Portia with my under-conditioned and bunned up head, or a low self-esteem work’s-not-my-real-life version of myself? My first answer is that it depends on the day, but I’ll keep thinking on it. After all, I’m capitalizing on a new perspective, courtesy of my new furniture placement.

Happy Saturday evening, one and all.







About Allison

Inspiring radical evolution in work and life.

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