How to pick a barber – from a 12 year old boy’s point of view
For the last 10+ years I have been going to the same barber shop. Son Max got his hair cut there too. I say used to, because his acute insight while going to another shop totally shook up how I used to view the old one.
Way back when Max used to be little, it used to be quite a spectacle and each one of the barber shop employees tried to not look up as they did not want to get stuck cutting his hair. I had to all but wrestle him into staying in the seat. Once he settled down and the folks were usually nice to him he did come around and got his hair cut. Lately, he would complain until the actual hair cutting would commence, but never, ever was it his favorite thing to do.
Fast forward now to last weekend and we had to get our hair cut at a completely different shop in a small village not far from home. Scheduling mishaps had made it impossible firing off our routine visit to the old shop. Picture a small hole in the wall place in a quaint little village with three barber chairs and as many folks manning them. Max loved it so much that he asked to get his hair cut. Huh? How did this happen? It was not even supposed to get a hair cut.
As a parent I guess you are supposed to be the one who teaches your children. More often than ever I now have come to believe that we are taught much more by them then the other way around. I learned a lot on Saturday. Here is what I asked him: “Hey Max, why did you like this barber shop so much?”:
“Papa, not only is it a warm cozy shop with old furniture, but the people working there are so happy. They like what they are doing and the morale is high.”
Wow! He was totally right about what he said. Those folks were on fire! I wish someone had taken a picture my face of utter amazement. I still cannot believe that I had chosen going to the old shop because of a set routine – I had all but forgotten about what really matters. Very few days go by where I do not think about how to live on purpose and being congruent with my beliefs and values and here I had totally missed the boat – for years! All it took was a fresh down to Earth look at the situation by a 12 year old boy. Needless to say the new shop now has two new long term customers. Go Max, you had it right all along.
This was not the only life lesson learned. Next time I’ll dive into how the one barber really made my weekend. It is very inspiring.