Are You Dressing For Your Authentic Self ?

Are You Dressing For Your Authentic Self ?

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  1. As I was helping my mother go through her closet, we found a red jacket that I designed about 10 years ago in my former career as a clothing Designer. When we no longer needed the sample I gave it to my mom who proudly wore it for many years. This year, she realized it no longer fit. For nostalgia sake, I tried it on. It looked good on me, red is a good color for me. However, I don’t really wear red as I feel it is more classic than my personal style. But it looked good on and being that it was something I had created, I took it home with me.

    One night I had an event and decided to wear it. I would make it my own by wearing it with jeans and make it more edgy by adding some of my gold stackable rings & fun earrings. And to top it off platform pumps with gold sequins. I looked in the mirror and knew I looked good, but had some doubts if the outfit really identified me and my personal style. As I was running late, I decide to go for it and off I went. On my way to the event, I kept having this nagging feeling that I should be wearing something else. But it was too late. At the event, I actually got a handful of compliments on the jacket. But I already knew, that once I got home, the jacket was going in the giveaway pile. See…. despite, knowing I looked good and despite the compliments I got, I did not feel like my authentic self.

    On another occasion, I went to the hair salon on a bitter cold day; temperatures were in the single digits. Usually, I walk out with my hair soaking wet, but on this frigid day, having to walk about 10 blocks, I felt maybe I should have it dried. My stylist asked if I would like it blown out; which was no additional charge with my hair service. Most women would jump at this offer. I, on the other hand, have always been a curly hair girl. Through all the Japanese straightening trends etc., ringlet curls are my trademark. But on this day I said “yes”. For the many days that the blow out lasted, I received numerous compliments from people who were only used to seeing me with my big curly look. Strange I thought. When I looked in the mirror I did not think it looked beautiful or sexy (on me).

    In the case of the red jacket, I knew I looked good, but the look was not me. In the case of the blow out, although others said I looked good, I just did not see it and I certainly did not feel it. In either case it was not the authentic me. The lesson here is – to feel empowered, you needed to dress in a way that defines you and makes you feel great. It’s one thing to  look great on the outside to others, but ultimately you must feel great on the inside or it really doesn’t matter.

    Image from courtesy of photostock

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