Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Avoiding Set Backs Series | Acting Fast

It's time for our second installment in the "Avoiding Setbacks" series. We're having this discussion early on in the year so we can ward off the enemy that robs us of our progress.  Last time we discussed rule #1.  Never missing a deep conditioning session & avoid skipping wash days.

Holding fast to rule #1 will help you immensely in what were talking about today.  There are two types of setbacks in my opinion:
+Traumatic: Setbacks that occur as a result of a single incident (i.e. damage from a bad relaxer, an excessive cut, etc).
+Gradual:  Setbacks that occur as a result of progressing damage over time.

Today, we're focusing on progressive related setbacks.  These, in my opinion are the most dangerous. With a traumatic setback, we know exactly what's happening. The gradual type of setback is a slow creep that happens as we sit back and do nothing.  In some cases it's so stealth that we don't even realize that a setback is happening.  In my case, for instance, I haven't experiencded the level of retention I would have wanted in the past few years.  It wasn't until recently that I realized how I may have been experiencing micro setbacks as a result of bad bunning practices.

The micro setbacks were allowed to continue because I failed to apply rule #2 to my hair journey.  What is rule number #2? Two words:  Act Fast!

Acting fast, my friends is how to keep gradual setbacks from ruining your life.  Acting fast is the critical component that allows length retention to happen.  Too many of us sit idly by as we experience chronic dry hair or breakage.  I've decided not to play this game any longer.  I'm now going into offense with regards to my journey.  I will be forever on the lookout for the tiny issues that turn into bigger concerns if left un handled.  There's a saying I heard which works perfectly for rule #2."

"What you ignore, becomes more."  

So when I'm experiencing dry hair, broken hair, split ends, excessive shedding, too many tangles, whatever. I will move quickly into strategies that address the issues right away.  A great tool for this is the hair journal.  By writing about your journey, it allows for time to think critically about what's happening to your hair.  It's about not getting comfortable with the things that are happening to your hair.  Yes, there's a specific amount of breakage that's inevitable, but how do we know how much that amount is?  What if that amount of required breakage is much less than what you're experiencing now?  I am now carrying the belief that I CAN ALWAYS DO SOMETHING THAT CAN IMPACT MY BREAKAGE.  This type of thinking causes me to be in the offense.  Which means I'm doing things to make my hair better even when there aren't major issues at the moment (being proactive). My bi-weekly protein treatments using Pure Protein is an example of that.  In the past, I would break out the protein treatments when my hair needed it.

Another action I'm taking increasing my frequency of moisturizing and sealing.  As a matter of fact, I created a personal challenge to moisturize and seal several times a day (if needed) to see how my hair responds.  Could this daily action impact the tiny amount of breakage I experience on a regular basis? Who knows, but if it doesn't work, you best believe I'll try something else.  The last thing I want is to remain helpless as my precious length is taken away from me. For this reason, I vow to act quickly.

  1. great tips, i decided to do the same and baggy every other night so my hair can be moisturized

  2. Right you are! Hair damage is just like weight gain. A little can creep up on you here and there and all of a sudden your fat or all of a sudden you have four inches of dry split ends. I employ your act fast strategy to keep my weight under control and my hair. Great post! God bless!

  3. Hey Nadege! This is so timely! A few days ago, a friend and I were assessing my hair. It seemed that no matter what, after a trim, I would still get splits (too many, for my liking) a couple months after. Everything else in my regimen seemed great, so we weren't sure what was wrong! Anyways, we discovered I may not be moisturizing and sealing enough! My next trim is Tuesday, but hopefully, I won't see nearly as many after that because I will religiously M&S twice a day. Here's hoping that my acting fast will end all this! I'm trying to meet some hair goals, but whenever I hit MBL, I get stuck! I'm hoping this is the thing to get me past the plateau :)

  4. I vow to act quickly too. The ponytail have damaged my nape, I have now changed my hair style and I am doing so daily. I am paying close attention to my hair.
    2014 say NO to setbacks :)

  5. Today I realized how bad the breakage is for me ... it's simply amazing and have no idea how I can over come this mess I've created.

  6. Amazing A-Ha moment post Nadege! Breakage is so sneaky, but always being on guard is exhausting! It's easier to get into a routine of breakage busting!

    KLP | SavingOurStrands