Archive for December, 2006

the hardest thing about growing a beard

Tuesday, December 19th, 2006

The most difficult thing about growing a beard is dealing with the comments of others. Okay, that may not be THE hardest thing, but it is definitely among the most difficult. Depending on your situation, you may find that the comments on your new beard are all supportive. That would be the best-case scenario. And that scenario does happen. In the worst-case scenario, however, people may declare all-out psychological warfare in an attempt to defeat your beard-growing efforts.

People are resistant to change and they all have opinions. When you grow a beard, you are changing the image that they have of you and they often would prefer that you not do that. They usually also have an opinion on beards that they feel compelled to share with you, like it or not. It’s often surprising how free people feel to criticize a new beard when similar criticisms of other physical features would generally be considered off limits. What should you do? Be prepared to stand your ground. When growing a new beard, make a commitment to yourself to see it through for at least six weeks. Make it a steadfast rule that you will not cave in, no matter what kinds of remarks or complaints are lobbed at you. You must psychologically prepare yourself for an onslaught of comments. Stand firm. Grow your beard!

Far too many newly-grown beards get hacked off in fits of self-doubt after receiving some insensitive, negative comments. Don’t let this happen to you. After people learn that you are not spineless and that you are committed to growing the beard, the commentary will usually ease up. It may even all become positive feedback. Some of the harshest critics may find that they actually like your beard! You’ll never learn that, however, if you let the beard critics win.