Life Lessons From Local Barbers

Imagine all the people you’d meet as the local barber?  All day long men would come into your shop to get a trim, sharing small details about their lives, problems, and perspectives on life.  Recently the interviewed eight local barbers and asked them to reflect on the happiest, most successful men they’ve met over the years and share any pearls of wisdom they’ve learned over the years.  They offered some really good advice.


“Live life with as few complications as possible.  Whether it relates to your relationships, hobbies, or even your personal grooming routine, simple does not have to mean boring! Focus on your end goal and purpose at all times and let the superfluous aspects fall to the side. Over the years I’ve had the opportunity of interacting with men who live their lives operating in the space of what society suggests that they HAVE to do, which always seems to be “more” — accomplish more, acquire more. And without fail it doesn’t take long before they feel miserable and trapped. But, the men who appear to be content are the ones who found a way to escape the sounds and pushes to “fit-in” by ignoring them, and focusing on what made them happy. Those guys are always the ones I learn and grow the most from. Not to mention, enjoy servicing them as clients!”

– Craig the Barber


“A grown man doesn’t blame anyone else, he takes responsibility for his actions.

– Drew Danburry


“What’s the real measure of a man?  Taking care of your responsibilities, going after what you want with a vengeance, staying true and authentic no matter what — all while looking damn good doing it.

What I’ve learned from talking to clients in my chair for over 25 years, is that most men struggle with balancing society’s stereotypical expectations on what it means to be a man and how they actually feel. [Sorry, just told a big secret, yes, we do feel.]

Whether it’s taking pride in your appearance ‘too much,’ or throwing all resemblances of manliness out of the window when it comes to having to play ‘tea party’ with your daughter, or achieving your goals, everybody has an opinion on how they think you should do it. Screw ‘em.”

– “Marv The Barb”


 “You only get out of life what you put into it.  Get educated one way or another.  It’s a tough world out there.  Even if you learn to do something with your hands, get as much schooling as you can.  And one more thing, good manners never brought us down.”

– Frank Vitale


“Do your work, and do a good job; that’s all you can do.”

– Willard Inscoe


 “Work hard, every day, towards whatever goal you have.  Stay positive, negativity does not help you in any way.  Be honest.”

– Kenji Prince

2 thoughts on “Life Lessons From Local Barbers”

  1. We’ve talked about this some before, but I see a trend among all these sorts of advice posts that is impossible for me to ignore – the big “elephant in the room” so to speak.

    And it is this: Everyone always tells you to focus on some goal or aim or particular lifestyle and “go for it with all you got” – as if it were some line that you merely needed to traverse, given enough time and skill, as in a video game – varying ways of wording it, but it’s always something along those lines.

    The problem with this is, everyone always assumes you know what you want already. Hardly anyone ever talks about how to discover this in some way that is at least somewhat proven and more reliable over the generic advice of “just get out there and try a lot of stuff and see what you like” – which is not very helpful because a guy can spend valuable years chasing something ridiculous that leads nowhere. I see very few things that are exciting during the process of doing, right from the beginning – many things seem to “build up” over time.

    Add to that this uncomfortable reality; what if following your dreams and realizing your deepest desires absolutely requires upsetting some major world event or doing things that are borderline fringe or amoral? High school guidance counselors never prepared anybody for that and I’m sure they’d look with horror upon anyone who even dared ask the question 🙂

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