Celebrity hairdresser talks listening

Tuesday 25th July 2017
Stephen Webb from Gogglebox supports The Big Listen 2017

On 24 July, Samaritans ‘The Big Listen’ asked the nation to build their listening skills by using its SHUSH! Listening Tips to help a friend, relative or family member who may be going through a tough time

Stephen joined Samaritans annual month-long awareness campaign Talk to Us in July encouraging people from all over the UK to take a few minutes to improve their listening skills by following the charity’s simple SHUSH! listening tips.  Our volunteers were also on hand at Hove, Brighton and Haywards Heath stations raising awareness and sharing our SHUSH tips with commuters. The response and positive comments were truly humbling.
Around 160,000 hairdressers in the UK spend an estimated 2,000 hours a year* hearing about the ups and downs of their clients’ lives.  By highlighting hairdressers’ listening expertise, Samaritans hopes to illustrate the value in everyone becoming better listeners.
Stephen spoke to Henry from Samaritans about how listening to his clients makes a real difference to their wellbeing, 
When you’re a hairdresser you get to know that maybe the person who’s sitting in the chair in front of you might be the only person that they can really talk to. That’s something you really learn. You’re kind of reaching out to them. You’re never crossing the line that you strike up a friendship outside of the salon, it’s always within the salon walls.
I think it’s really important to give everyone the time, because it might take them time to actually want to open up and they might be nervous on top of the issues they may be experiencing “
Traditionally, people feel they can confide in their hairdresser or barber and those working within the profession understand the importance of their role in providing a listening ear. 
As a hairdresser over time you realise that the person sitting in front of you could be in real need of a chat. A massive part of my job is to simply listen and as a hairdresser we take the role as listeners very seriously. You go through so many things with your client’s deaths, births and marriages. And you’re there for each other every step of the way.”
Thank you Stephen, our amazing volunteers and everyone who supports Samaritans and supported The Big Listen.