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Why I’m letting my kids cut my hair (true)

On May 28, 2021, I will allow my three 11-year-old children to cut my hair. 

I will give them no instructions. 

Nothing is off limits and there are no consequences.  

They will be given scissors and their imaginations. 

That’s it. 

By now you’re probably asking… why would any sane person do this?? 

Great question. 

Let me explain…

Almost two years ago I came up with an idea for my second book. 

I wrote a book proposal. 

I shopped it around to some literary agents. 

I got thoughtful rejection letters with wonderful advice to help me revamp my proposal and make it better. But also…

I did a lot of nothing. 

A lot of thinking about the book. 

A lot of worrying that I wasn’t good enough to write it. 

A lot of saying, “Well, I’m too busy right now because (insert excuse here), so when things slow down and I just have more time and can focus, I’ll finish it and resubmit it.” 

**News flash.** Those uninterrupted periods of book-writing time never showed up. There was always “another thing” that took my attention away. And the book dwindled on my Google drive. 

Maybe you can relate. 

I felt shame about this. 

I knew I was giving in to my fear, that inner voice that stops us from doing big things in life. 

Mine sounds like… 

You’re not good enough to write this, Rose. 

No one will read this. 

You’re not a researcher or a well-known person, so no one will take you seriously. 

You don’t know enough people in the literary world. 

You don’t have a big enough following. 

I tried to quiet this voice by telling it – over and over again – that the problem was not me. I just didn’t have enough TIME to do it. 

But after two years, even I had to admit that my excuse was weak. The truth was… I was afraid. 

So how does any of this relate to my kids cutting my hair? 

A month ago, I read a book called Indistractable by Nir Eyal. Nir talks about how creating “pacts” can help keep us accountable for reaching goals. My favorite example was the “burn or burn” pact he uses to make himself exercise. 

Here’s how it works… he has a paper calendar on his wall with a $100 bill taped to it. Next to the calendar is a plastic lighter. Every day that he burns calories in the gym, he puts a checkmark on the calendar.  If there’s ever a day that he doesn’t burn the calories, he has to burn the money. He hasn’t missed a day of working out in three years. 

I was intrigued by this idea. Nir said that the reason pacts work is because of a phenomenon called “loss aversion.” This means that losing hurts more than winning feels good.

I started thinking about how I could use a pact to help me finish my book. I thought about burning money, but that felt kind of wrong. 

So I settled on something else… my hair. 

I’ll admit – I’m vain about my long, naturally curly hair. I even once wrote a blog post about how donating my hair straightener helped me love myself more.

So I thought… 

What if I made a pact with myself that if I didn’t finish my book by a certain date, I would let my children cut my hair? 

(Even typing that sentence is horrifying, by the way!)

So here’s the deal…

I will finish the first draft of my new book by the end of May. 

On May 28 day, I will host a Facebook Live where one of two things will happen: 

  1. You will see my children cut my hair live on the Internet. 
  2. You will see me and my kids cut a cake in celebration of my finished book draft. 

I call this the “cut or cut” pact. 

And you won’t know which one will happen until you tune in…

In case you haven’t figured it out… writing this blog post is a big extra layer of accountability in the pact. There are over thousands of people on this email list. Sending this to all of you is flat out terrifying. Now thousands of people expect me to finish my book in less than two months. (Yes, my heartbeat quickened as I typed that.) 

So I’m taking this moment to thank you for keeping me accountable to myself. 

If you feel so moved…. I’d love for you to send me an email at [email protected] with any words of encouragement, support, or tuition to a high-speed hair styling school for my kids. 

Thanks for joining me in this journey, my friends. 

Cheers to the “cut or cut”! 

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