This morning I had another reminder about the impact appearance has on a situation. It’s not new news to me but it’s always amazing to me to realize just how big a difference it can make.
Here’s the thing, how we feel is directly related to how we look. The things we do each day and more importantly how we do them are directly related to how we feel. Therefore how we look becomes a fundamental part of our outcome. If we feel frumpy, we will act frumpy and perform frumpy. In turn if we feel confident, we will act confident and perform with confidence. I often find the times when I feel the least like dressing up or making myself look nice are the times I need it most.
When you understand the power that comes from simple things related to your dress and appearance you’ll never put yourself in a situation where give that power away or ignore it. As a poise and charm coach I’ve taught several classes on basics from coordinating clothing to hairstyling to little tricks like using the power of color to your advantage or how to count points to know if you’re over or under dressed. But here’s the basic equation: if you want to feel _____ you need to do all you can to make yourself look _____. You can fill in the blank for whatever emotion or style fits your circumstance.
This morning, I found myself trapped between needing to be available for an important phone call and needing to get showered and ready for the day. (I know, if I could pull my mattress over mind backside out of bed at 6 AM the problem would be solved, but I’m not an early riser. It’s all I can do some mornings to be dressed with teeth brushed and out the door by 7:30 AM to get my son to school on time!) So when I got home just after 8 AM this morning I was stuck. All I knew was the call was expected “first thing in the morning.” Now, you all know how this waiting game can go. It’s like waiting for the cable guy or service repairman; a game of Russian Roullete. You may luck out and have it hit early in the time window or you may waste a lot of time waiting to the bitter end. As I pondered on things I realized that I would also need to be armed with professionalism and confidence in my conversation, therefore I really couldn’t afford to sit around with only my teeth brushed waiting. Further, if the gamble ended up pushing to the later limit I’d still be in this position when it’s time to pick my son up from school – that won’t work! So I prepared myself for the worst keeping the phone right by my side and hoping it didn’t come down to me figuring out how to answer it with soap in my hair. Fate was on my side this morning.
When I looked in the mirror and realized how much better I felt about everything and the impact it would have on my expected conversation I was supremely grateful I’d made the decision I did. I remembered reading some advice once for stay at home moms that the first thing they should do every day is get themselves dressed and ready right down to their shoes. Some women argued this because if you’re not going anywhere or only doing housework why bother? That’s the very point…with that attitude everything in your life will reflect a why bother quality.
So harness that power and use it to your advantage. Dress yourself and appearance for whatever strength/help you need most and you’ll be amazed at what that little step will do for you.