Monday, June 21, 2010
Dress The Part!
I’ve often heard (and have always preached) that in order to get ahead in the workplace, one must dress for the job she wants, rather than for the job she currently holds. I think the same philosophy rings true for life, too: if we want to convey a certain something, and to get ahead personally, it’s vital that we dress the part.
As shallow as it may seem, my friends, society does judge us by the clothing on our backs. As Clinton Kelly from TLC’s What Not To Wear says, “How you dress tells the world how you expect to be treated.”
And honestly, don’t we feel better about ourselves when we’ve put forth a little effort? It’s a great little mind-trick. When you know you look fabulous, you’ll walk a little taller. You’re more willing to make eye contact with others. Heck, you might even smile at a stranger. Others will view you as confident, intelligent, and generally far more interesting than the Croc-wearing woman standing next to you in check-out line.
Now, I’m not saying we must don our Sunday best for mundane errand-running; I’m telling you, though, that an oversized t-shirt and baggy shorts simply won’t cut it.
With the onset of summer’s heat, I constantly hear, “It’s too hot to dress up”. Hogwash. Plenty of cute, casual, and comfortable clothes hang in shops right now, begging you to take them home and wear them!
I realize money might be a concern, and it really needn’t be. Get on the email list for affordable places such as New York & Company and Express – they’ll send you loads of coupons and are notorious for sales. Join the Black Book Club at White House Black Market and save 5% on each purchase (in addition to regular sales, coupons, and birthday bonuses). It’s a rare occasion in which I’ll pay full price for an item, so I certainly don’t expect you to do so. (Side note: a gal does not need a ton of clothing. Get a few separates for mixing and matching)
“But I just really don’t care what I look like, or what other people think of me.” I’ve heard this one before, and I can’t help but think that an underlying issue exists with this way of thinking. Why are you afraid of getting noticed?
Also, given the overload of information we’ve access to these days, there are those who still aren’t quite sure what suits them, wardrobe-wise. They don’t realize the power of color. They’ve no clue about the importance of fit and proportion. My advice is to find a role model and emulate her style. Be realistic, though: if you’re not built like Jennifer Aniston, chances are you won’t look as snazzy in some of the numbers she wears. Pick up a copy of Vogue, Marie Claire, or Lucky to discover the current, hot looks. Enlist the help of a trusted, honest friend. Take the plunge and hire someone to help you (I just happen to know of a fabulous woman whose job consists of the very thing we’re discussing……)
The point of it all is this: we must develop an awareness of the silent message we’re conveying to the world. In order to attract good friends, good times, and good vibes, we’ve got to dress the part!
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