“Look Ma’ I made it”
Katie Strong reflects on the impact of her journey at The Style Academy, along with all the What ifs.. or excuses she and many others face when exploring the opportunity of a new educational journey.
“To say TSA changed my life for the better, is a total understatement.”
How my Hair school journey as a student started
It’s officially been just over a year since I started at The Style Academy, with the end of my part-time hair program coming to an end.
To say TSA changed my life for the better, is a total understatement. To say the people behind TSA haven’t been in my corner through the highs and lows, would make a liar out of me. For someone with so much to say, I don’t know if I can really put my experience thus far into words. But I am going to try.
School is a big deal, and it feels even bigger at 30. Over the years I have been on autopilot, working jobs that paid the bills, for people that saw me as replaceable. I thought this was just how life goes when you don’t manage to figure it out by your early 20’s.
Then one day, I was sitting in my car in complete silence after a long day of work, too mentally and emotionally exhausted to get out and into my apartment. I was feeling my lowest and completely unfulfilled, unseen and unheard, when someone came along out of nowhere and completely changed my life. For no selfish reason, just because they saw something in me and took initiative.
This is where my chapter at The Style Academy began.
This upfront, upbeat and kind-hearted person told me I needed to explore my talents (here at The Style Academy), which I had been displaying on social media. Halloween was coming and one could say… I am passionate. I was making multiple costumes, styling my hair / wigs and going all out with the make up, as a way to escape my boring, monotone, reality. I am basically a grown child that loves to play dress up.
I have always laughed off the idea of going to school and I am pretty sure that is exactly what happened in that moment. I, LOL’d, if you will. First off, how does a stubborn, 30 year old, indecisive Libra, narrow down one thing to invest in, FOR THE REST OF HER LIFE. My idea of going to school was a toxic one…
My reasons that were holding me back
- I’m old (enough)
- I’m single and I live on my own.
- I need to work.
- I care about the people I work for.
- School is too expensive.
- It takes too long.
- It’s covid and jobs are hard to come by.
- I struggled in school as a kid because I don’t absorb information the way most people do.
Basically… It’s not for me.
But the most toxic thing about all of this, is I know and preach, if you’re scared, good. That means you’re growing.
If any of these excuses sound familiar, listen when I say…
- Age is just a number. Life doesn’t stop as you get older, it’s more opportunity to live.
- You are strong and independent.
- Hours are flexible.
- You can care about your employers, but if you’re not happy, it shows.
- There will always be debt. Create debt that is going to make you money, bring you joy and success.
- Stop trying to rush and control everything, that is your fear.
- Build your skills and confidence so everyone wants you, or no one can have you because you work for yourself.
- Your situation does not define what you are capable of. The choice to jump or hang back, does.
I won’t sugar coat everything, I believe in honesty. Between exam anxiety, imposter syndrome, covid, life’s natural losses and disappointment, and simply adjusting my way of life from an overworked adult to a student, it’s been rough. But somehow, beyond my belief, I have never been happier and more excited overall.
Why the TSA Way for the right choice to grow my Hairstyling skills
We all like to tell our loved ones, ” you are always your biggest critic. Go easy on yourself.” But how often do we practise that kindness and patience for ourselves? Not a single person at TSA has failed to remind me of this. Never held it against me. Just supported and encouraged me. In fact, they teach it. It really is more than just a school.
I cannot wait to continue my journey here in the hair world and forever practice and teach” the TSA way.” I will certainly never forget the people and will constantly work to make you proud.
Thank you for pushing me, motivating me, investing in me and even stressing me on occasion – but that’s an ” it’s not you, it’s me.” thing.
I am excited to continue the next phase of my journey with Honey Comb Hair
Do not wait for someone to come along and show you what you are capable of. Be that person for yourself and inspire others to see themselves. You will save a lot of down time.
– Katie Marie Strong, Xo