We had the good fortune of connecting with Kara Jean Schmidt and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kara Jean, how do you think about risk?
Risk & Reward directly correlate. If you only take small minor risks in life you’re playing it safe. Small rewards can come but nothing big. The only way to have greater reward is to take bigger risks. In my career, I’ve decided not to play it safe. I want to prove to myself that I’m more than “just” a hairstylist. I set goals and challenge myself to do things that scare me. Of course, the riskier the scarier, but als0 great reward can follow. Being nervous and being excited are the same feeling. Think about it. The heart racing, breathing fast, butterflies in your tummy. Same thing happens when you get excited. When I’m starting to get nervous about something I’m about to do, I literally out loud tell myself, “I’m not nervous, I’m excited. I’m not nervous. I’m excited.”
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Hair is my canvas. People walk around with my work on display everyday and its such a cool feeling. It makes me proud to say I can change the way someone feels about themselves. I create a relationship with my guests that is invaluable. We have such a good time when they come spend their “me” time in my chair. I create beautiful works of art on their hair that make me so proud, but i am more proud of the connection I have with my clientele. I grow people for a living. I mentor, educate, and grow fellow stylist. Earlier in my career I focused more on myself. I was growing me. I took every class available to me. I found people I looked up to and wanted to be like and surrounded myself with them. Some weeks I worked 90 hours. Half assisting another educator, half working on my own guests, all while building and growing my online presence. If something made me uncomfortable, I didn’t shy away. I worked on it over and over and over. I learned that education is the key to confidence behind the chair. The more I learned, the better and more successful I was behind the chair. Once I didn’t have to focus on myself as much I was able to start mentoring others. I had to sacrifice time from my family and friends, money for my classes and travel, and sleep for sure. I didn’t know exactly how big the reward would be, but I had to trust that doing all of the hard work to grow myself would give me the ability to grow my business.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I am a little drive south, but its worth it! I am in New Braunfels, which is a little German river town. I would suggest staying somewhere right on the river or downtown. You need to brunch at La Cosecha and get their house margaritas! Another morning brunch should happen at McAdoo’s for their bloody mary bar and seafood fondue omelette. You’ll have to check out Gruene one of afternoons. Lots of wineries and good shopping. Plus you can walk around with your beverage! Dine at The Gristmill or venture a little ways over to Inferno’s for wood fired pizza and live music. If you have kids, you have to check out Schlitterbahn! The World’s Biggest Waterpark. Its massive and spread out over 65 acres and has more than 40 waterslides. Family Fun for sure! For adults I’d suggest a little bar hopping night downtown by the main plaza. Here’s what we did for my birthday pub crawl. – Start with pizza and housemade mozzarella at Bootleggers – Oyster Bar for their famous Breakfast Shots – Callahans Irish Pub – Phoenix has chili that’s been featured on The Food Network – Moonshine & Ale Piano Bar for singing along to the music with a jolly crowd – End upstairs at The Black Whale for karaoke if you’re into that – or The Pour Haus for chillin to live music. *beware we only serve til midnight most days and 1am on Saturdays The perfect river day. -Start at Wings and Rings for lunch -Float either the comal for a smooth short ride & end with dinner at Muck n Fuss and get the frozen strawberry mule!!!! -or the Guadalupe for a longer wilder ride & end at Lone Star Float House for the best burger ive ever had.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Shout out to my family for always being my biggest support. James for being there to pack my suitcase when I cant. My friends for cheering me on and celebrating my successes. & my Fixx Family for always having my back.