Do You Need To Conduct A Self-Edit on Yourself?

Last week, while I was attending Sebastian Professional’s What’s Next Awards (WNA) in Dallas, Texas, I was given the opportunity to go backstage and speak with the nine finalists competing in three categories; student, professional and affiliate.

I could have asked them anything. I could have made them explain their creative process or talk about what products they were using, and why, and more importantly HOW they were using them.

“What tools are you using?”
“How are you translating the new trend?”
“What inspired you to enter the competition.”

I put all those questions off to the side because honestly, what I wanted to know what this…

“What’s been the biggest obstacle you’ve had to face and conquer along your journey, from the moment you decided to enter the competition to you standing here at this very moment working on your model?”

Most of the contestants had something to say about how challenging it was not to know who their model was going to be due to them not receiving their model until the night before via a lottery. Unlike Wella Trend Vision, you don’t bring your model to the competition. At WNA, you are given a model. It surely takes the level of competition up a few notches and tests your creativity, your skills, and your product/hair knowledge.

“My model is my biggest challenge. Being able to create what’s in my mind on a model I’ve never met before is difficult. It sure helps to know different hair types and have a great knowledge of all the Sebastian products,” shared Louis Maldonado from Puerto Rico (the recipient for the People’s Choice Award).

“Not knowing the model and the type of hair. It’s been an obstacle being able to adjust your idea based on the density of the hair. You always have to have a second plan,” said Sabina Cayer from Quebec (winner for the Affiliate Category).

“Not knowing who your model will be has been the biggest obstacle and challenge. You can only plan so much, so you just need to go with it,” added in Laura Rocha, from Venice, CA (winner for the Professional Category).

But there was one answer that left me thinking:

“It was the beginning stage for me. Narrowing down the looks and being able to self-edit when it came to submitting my photos for the competition,” said Tanya Cuozzo, from New Jersey (finalist for the Affiliate category).

Not going to lie, but her answer has resonated with me for a solid week.

How often do we perform a self-edit on ourselves?
How routinely do we perform a self-edit on our processes in our professional lives, and more importantly, on our everyday routines in our personal lives?

As a writer, I need to conduct a self-edit on everything I write. Scaling back and “tightening things up” is part of my process.
So when it comes to my life and work, how can I “trim the fat,” so to speak, in the other areas?

Self-editing for writing goes a little like this, and I’m going to reference a blog post from one of our favorite grammar-based sites/tools called Grammarly:

There are four tips you can implement in your editing process. Those are:
1. Let your writing rest for a few hours or days.
2. Read your writing in a new format.
3. Read your writing out loud.
4. Read it backwards.

So now I’m going to take those four writing tips and modify them slightly and apply them in a broader way:

1. Let your IDEA rest for a few hours or days. Before you make a drastic change in your business or professional life, let this new idea “rise” and see if it has legs to stand on, and more importantly, make sure it has a solid foundation to build off of.

2. After you have let your idea rest for a bit, next, I’d like for you to SEE your idea in a new format. Think about how this idea or decision is not just going to affect you, but everyone around you and those who will be involved in this process.

3. READ your idea out loud to someone who is NOT involved. Bounce it off them and see if you’re manifesting something based on reason or emotion and if it is necessary.

4. WORK your idea backwards. You know what you want your end goal to be, but maybe you haven’t been able to lay out all the steps involved in the process to see if you should move forward on it. You may discover that it may not be worth proceeding.

And after all that, once the self-edit process is done, then decide if you either continue, shelve it, or “file” it away into the brain trash can.

I have so many different areas of my life that require coexisting and overlapping, and I need to be consistently and continuously refining and reviewing their processes. Going this “self-edit” route is one that I’m going to explore, and I’d like for you to consider it as well.

Try it for a week, heck, try it for a month.

What have you got to lose?

And after you’ve attempted it, revisit this article and share your experience in the comments below 🙂

– Kerri

Photo Courtesy: Sebastian Professionals

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