It’s June 2020 and we have been in quarantine for several months now. This time has brought space for me to grow by reading more and taking a look at what matters most to me. During this time I joined a book club and we decided to read Untamed by Glennon Doyle. In this book Glennon talks about breaking out of the box that society places us in and embracing your true self.
I’ve been going through an untaming of my own for the past 2 years. It started with minimalism, creating boundaries, going to therapy, and finally breaking down the wall of “safety” I built that kept others out. I’ve been becoming more of myself with each passing day by every book that I read, daily journaling, and a lot of inner work.
Now to the purple hair. I have wanted purple hair since I was 18. I’ve added purple to the deep red here and there in that time frame, but I have never gone full purple. Why is that you may ask? When you google “is unnatural hair color unprofessional?” You will get a lot of results that go into detail as to why unnatural colored hair is not a good idea, even if your employer have a policy that allows it. Those results also caution that you will most likely not get promoted over others due to that choice. And for a long time, my only focus was on being professional and helping others grow.
This is not to say that all companies are like that and many are now removing policies regarding hair color. I am grateful to work for such a company! Not only that, but I also love the work that I do and I love the people I work with. Yet, I was still haunted by the search results and the possible unsavory views by others. So I didn’t risk coloring my hair in a way that may not have been embraced, until now.
Untamed helped me continue to embrace myself by breaking outside of the box. Instead of being scared about what others would say, I decided to create a new view for them. I will be the proof that unnatural colored hair does not determine if the person is professional or not. I will continue to be the hard-working person I am with the hair color of my choice. And if people can’t see past the purple hair, then I’m not sure if I could change their mind anyway, and that’s ok.
I realize this could also be said about natural hair for other cultures. I recognize that I do not have that experience, but there are similar views in society that must also be brought to light. Although I am able to embrace purple hair, different cultures are not safe to embrace theirs. This is not something I take lightly or something to be ignored. I recognize that my white privilege is showing and it is important to note that unnatural colored hair is not remotely the same as natural hair for other cultures. This is a continued injustice in our society and one I am working on personally. If you are interested please read and work through this book as Layla Saad is the expert on this topic.
But I believe Untamed is a book for everyone to read. She discusses topics such as sexuality, racism, sexism for both male and female counterparts, motherhood, and society’s views of each. She gets in the weeds of each topic by using her own personal story of becoming untamed. I think we could all use a bit of untaming because we cannot thrive in a caged society. We must break free and become who we were meant to be all along. And right now mine includes having purple hair and working on myself.