5 Ways To Use Your Style To Build Confidence
This past weekend I went on a quick girl’s trip to St. Louis. As I come down off of all of the fun and scroll through the fabulous pictures I can’t help but feel intense satisfaction. Part of it is the joy that sisterhood brings. It's the joy of genuine sisterhood that is unconditional and expands to your ugly parts. Not going to lie though, a part of me was excited for this trip for the outfits. There’s power in a good outfit, let me tell you. Come to slay and all of a sudden everything feels better.
In general, I'm feeling bolder, sexier and just more comfortable in my skin all together and a great outfit definitely empowers me to embrace that. It really has me wondering what the connection between fashion choices and confidence is and how we can use what we wear to build up those chops.
CONNECTING Fashion + CONFIDENCE
It’s no secret that a great outfit can influence our feelings. However, this 2012 article in Vogue cited research that proves it to be more than just a theory. In fact, women tend to associate certain articles of clothing, like heels, along with power. What’s more, another study done in 2014 found that something as simple as wearing a superhero t-shirt made people feel more powerful.
“When we put on a piece of clothing we cannot help but adopt some of the characteristics associated with it, even if we are unaware of it,” Professor Karen J. Pine says in her book Mind What You Wear.
With that knowledge doesn’t it follow that the clothes you wear mean a lot more than you think? Every morning when you get dressed you’re telling the world what you think about yourself.
Every morning when you get dressed you're telling the world what you think about yourself.
It's time to start harnessing the power of your closet to build up your confidence.Here are 5 tips to make sure that your clothing choices remind you of the goddess you are.
DRESS OUTSIDE OF THE BOX
There’s nothing like pulling off a look you didn’t think you could. The fun in fashion is that you can try all sorts of things with minimal risk. Perhaps you’ll suffer a bad picture here and there, but other than that experimenting with your aesthetic is relatively painless. It gives you the opportunity to reinvent yourself time and time again. In a world where we are always evolving as people, it's nice to know our aesthetics can keep up.
The right outfit can turn you into whoever you want to be. It's partially why dressing up can be so much fun. Try pieces that your normally wouldn't. If you don't like it, lesson learned. But, who knows? You may find a new favorite. The act of venturing outside of your comfort zone, even by just wearing a color you normally wouldn't, will translate into other parts of your life as well.
LOOK GOOD, THEN FEEL GOOD
Whenever I'm in a bad mood one of the first things I do is some sort of primping. Looking good physically often translates into my inner feelings. Call me vain, but we all have that one dress or top or pair of shoes that make us feel great. Aim to wear things like that more often and choose outfits that make you feel bolder.
A great exercise for this is picturing the kind of woman you want to be and then thinking about how she dresses. When you picture her in your mind what does she look like? If you shop according to that vision, then you’ll emulate that woman in your attitude as well for an instant confidence boost.
ACCENTUATE THE GOOD
The perfect team is built up of people who have different strengths that make up for each other’s weaknesses. I like the think of the perfect wardrobe the same way. Look for clothes that play up the physical assets that you love the most while downplaying the ones you don’t love so much. Clothes that fit well and that you’re comfortable in will translate to your vibes. Shoes you can't walk in or a dress that's too tight will not make for a fun experience.
Last week I did an impromptu photo shoot in a dress that was so unforgiving to my midsection. I spent the majority of the time sucking my stomach in and 40+ shots later I had to scrap them all because all you could see was discomfort. Sometimes the look just isn't for you. The good news is there are plenty of different styles to choose from that will have you looking and feeling like your best self.
There are a lot of things in life that we do even when we don't feel like it. Paying bills, waking up early for work, exercise, whatever your have-to’s look like. There the harsh realities in life that mean when you do have a choice you need to choose wisely. With lots of obligations already on our plates it’s important to take control of the things we do have a say over, wardrobe included.
Don’t settle for looks you don’t love. Work to build a wardrobe that screams you. If it doesn't make you feel great you can do without it.
TAKE A LITTLE MORE TIME
It’s okay to take a little more time to get yourself ready for the day. I’ve never been one of those gal’s who takes hours, but there’s definitely no need to rush either. Take a few more minutes to add some mascara and lip gloss to your routine to bring your look together. Get out the iron and press out those wrinkles. Take a few extra minutes to do those small things that will make the difference. You won’t regret kicking off the day with a more polished look.
BONUS: Make a get ready playlist
This has more to do with attitude than it does your clothing choices, but it’s a bonus tip that you'll definitely need. Make a playlist of songs that make you feel empowered and confident and play it while you’re getting ready. It’ll boost your already boosted mood and you'll walk out of the door like the world is you runway.
My playlist includes Rihanna and Beyonce and I'm convinced no good girl power playlist is complete without them.
If you're ready to discover your personal style, try the Help Me Slay Q&A Worksheet that will walk you through the steps to building a signature style that works for you.
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