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Today’s episode is SO special! Elizabeth gets to chat with Rachel Butler. Rachel is not only an amazing stylist, nation wide educator and salon owner, but she is a HUGE leader in the Hair Love Community. She has attended both the Hair Love Retreat and Morocco Mastermind, and participated in The Workshop in a Box program!! On top of all of that, she is a mother and survivor of domestic violence. Her story is truly inspiring and we are beyond blessed to know her and to have her as an example in our lives.
3:30 RACHEL’S STORY
2 years ago, Rachel almost died. She didn’t die, but her husband did. It has been a very long and hard road picking up the pieces and getting her life, her business, and her kids lives back together again.
When you are a stylist behind the chair, you always feel like you have to be ‘on’. You have to be there for your client, and help them, and after getting out of the hospital and getting back to work, it was very hard to talk about her story.
It was all over the news, and she was embarrassed and sad and felt broken. She knew she had to go back to work to provide for her family and salon team. She had so many things going on around her, but still needed to grieve, but for so long she had to put her healing process on hold because she needed to keep everything else in her life afloat.
She had done a tone of charity work in her community, but felt extremely embarrassed when she was receiving help. She didn’t want anything to be about her, she wanted to focus on her client’s and her team.
When she got back to her salon, she had a TON of new clients, and at first she was mad about it, but then she realized they didn’t know her story so she didn’t have to worry about breaking down, and could focus on talking to her clients.
Rachel attended the first Hair Love Retreat 5 months after all of this. At retreat, the attendees hike Angels Landing. It can be a very scary hike because of the height, and the hike was extremely hard for Rachel because her husband shot her in the lung making it hard to breathe. She had shattered ribs and scar tissue, and for her to be able to physically climb that mountain was a symbol of climbing the mountain of her life. That moment and so many more, gave her life, strength, and motivation to get back to work, and to be OK with not being ok at the time, and knowing that eventually she would be ok. From there, she was able to stop avoiding the reality of what was happening, and remembering that she was human, and it was ok to take whatever time she needed for herself. After that, she was able to really start healing.
She still has a lot of nerve pain and numbness, but she has been told over and over again that she is a medical miracle, and she miraculously can still do what she loves.
13:23 CONNECTIONS MADE AT THE RETREAT
Rachel met Lacy, the owner of Laced hair extensions, and hit it off right away. They are both single moms and had a lot in common, and Lacy told her that she wanted to be her Texas educator. Rachel had started doing extensions earlier that year, and make more money in less time, and allowed her to go back to work. Having her arms 8 inches lower (the change from extensions to hair color), it completely takes away any nerve pain she has. Before extensions, she was having to take a lot of pain medications, and muscle relaxer so that she would not be in so much pain, and she didn’t’ want to do.
Now she travels all over the country teaching extensions. She has been able to pay off all of the debt that was left behind by her husband. The salon is almost paid off, and she has been able to expand! It has been an insane amount of work, but she feels so much more comfortable in her own skin and truly knows who she is, and knows why God kept her around.
“To be able to still do hair isn’t just a career choice, it’s a gift. A gift I was given. A skill I was designed to do.”
All of this has allowed her to shift her focus onto what’s important.
She tries to help her employees realize the importance of being home at a decent hour and taking that time with their families.
25:15 How do you ask for help?
It is super hard to not have “mom guilt” when working. Elizabeth had to shift her mindset, and remember all of the changes she is making in the world.
Rachel makes sure she has a list and a calendar to remind her what to do and when. That way she make sure she has her kids things as a priority as well as her business. She does things like a laundry service, drop in day care, family help, and other things so that she can get things done and still be the best mom she can be.
38:30 What advice would you give to someone who is nervous about joining Hair Love?
At the retreat, you get SO much more comfortable in your own skin. There are tears, hugs, and deep moments that you’ll experience that you don’t even know you need until they’re happening.
If you have any hesitations, you should just GO! It’s a big monetary investment, but more importantly it’s an investment in yourself.
If you want to start smaller, you can check out The Workshop in a Box, or you can listen to the podcast for free!
When you work in the creative industry, you need to be able to have an experience that influences that side, and then you’ll be able to walk away and say that your life and business is changed.
If you want to hang out with Rachel go here:
We love you SO much Rachel. Thank you for being such an inspiration and light!!!