2020, what a year. It wasn’t all quarantinis and above the desk dressing though, I’m sure you would agree there have been some powerful lessons learned?
As a professional Stylist and business owner, I’ve always been immersed in creativity and beautiful fashion, but what you might not know is that I grew up around race cars. It’s always been a passion of my dads and as the father of two daughters, I figured one of us should show some interest. In the beginning I put his intense enthusiasm down to petrol fumes and fast speed etc. What I hadn’t considered was the life lessons that I would learn in his pursuit.
Coming out of 2020, a year like no other, has allowed me to reflect and I know some of you will find value in these 5 lessons I learnt from my time around cars. Stick with me, they’re good.
1. It’s not about the cars.
I was surprised when my dad told me that his interest in race cars wasn’t all about the speed or the cars themselves, it was the “direct correlation between a commitment to improving and success”. So often we need to be guaranteed that we’ll succeed before we can commit to something. Interesting given that’s not how life works right?
Where focus goes, energy flows and success grows.
Obvious really, but applicable to everything in life, dreams and goals especially.
2. Look ahead.
“Look only at the car in front of you and you’re 85% more likely to get in an accident, look a few cars ahead and you can read the traffic.” That’s what I remember my driving instructor telling me as a teenager and it stuck.
If you’re driving on a race track, you’re not only looking into the corner ahead, you know what the whole track looks like. You know how much fuel you need and the capabilities of the car.
People who were looking at the car in front of them, without preparing for the bigger picture life they wanted, felt the impact of 2020 harder.
On the other hand I watched our students and stylists navigate the corners with agility, creativity and generating additional income streams while connecting with new clients. At ASI, we doubled our support resources and lead tour students to success, while they inspired each other with their wins. I can’t tell you how powerful that was in a year like this.
3. Get off cruise control.
Cruising might be fine for a freeway where there’s little change to conditions, but that’s not how life works and it would be boring if it did. On a race track that would have you heading directly for the wall at high speed. Not only could that be fatal, it would also be costly. Something that we often forget, if we only take the easy road, we pay the price at some point.
To experience the life we want we’ve got to take control. Change makers, go-getters and the rich-listers all understand that sometimes you need to put your foot on the accelerator and sometimes you need to break. But leaving it up to someone or something else will never get you the result.
4. Change Gears.
If you’ve ever driven a manual car, you will know that you need to change gears when increasing speed. Interestingly, the car does it’s hardest work in the lowest gears, meaning when you’re going slowest, you’re using the most energy.
It’s like a rocket, which is known to use up to 87% of its fuel on take off. But once it’s in the air and in the atmosphere, it flies.
Often I speak to people who want to start an idea or dream, but think they’re too busy. When you’re driving you can never be too busy to change gears or you will blow up the gearbox and ruin the car. Same goes for life, when we don’t grow, we suffer.
If you’re wanting to grow, you’re going to need to switch gears. Otherwise, you will find yourself grinding but not getting anywhere fast. 2021 is a year to switch things up, and fly.
5. Visit the pits.
During a race, the last thing a driver really wants to do is break their lead to visit the pits. You watch the rest of the field fly by, while you’re at a standstill. But it’s where you get everything you need to get back out there and be in the running to win the flag.
I think a pit stop is an adjustment, an improvement to change course. All of the things we can’t do while we’re in the race. 2020 gave many of us a lengthy pit-stop, whether it was focusing on our wellbeing, banana bread making, or upskilling. And it’s not too late. Now is the time to make the adjustment and get back on the track you want to be on, not just the one one you know.
My pit crew (the ASI team, mentors, facilitators and trainers and industry professionals) are the success behind our students and stylists. Like expert mechanics in styling, fashion, marketing and learning design. They’re committed to our students’ growth and what ensures our stylists win the race and get to wave that checkered flag.
So if 2020 was your pitstop, use 2021 to finish the lap. Start your passion project, side hustle or complete career change because the skills you’ll develop and lessons you’ll learn will fuel your journey to success.
I look forward to helping you reach the podium finish,
Lauren Di Bartolo