Many of us when we think of self-care, we think of taking time for oneself in some form or another. This could be a relaxing massage or bubble bath, a much needed facial, finally reading that book, meditation or simply a long brunch with friends. This looks different for everyone but one universal element of all of our lives is that we all get dressed everyday (for the most part, ha ha). For many of us, this process has turned into falling into the slump of rushing to get the job done and putting on the same old go-to outfit. To me, this is an important form of self-care, being mindful about what we put on each day. This means actually practicing making of habit of NOT rushing to throw on the first thing you see in your closet. Being deliberate about what you put on can help ignite your inner style confidence. I know that when I love my outfit, I'm not only in a better mood but I feel more energized, creative, comfortable and confident.
Look Good, Feel Good
As I've mentioned, it takes practice to be mindful about what you wear. If I am wearing something a little too tight in the waist because in rushing I didn't realize that maybe these pants are from several years ago when I was maybe half a size smaller, then I can be cranky for the entire day! This is not good self-care. Conversely, if I am sure to allow enough time in the morning to carefully choose pants that fit, paired with other pieces and accessories that fuel my style confidence, then my aura will reflect that the entire day, in a positive way. Also, I'm not just referring to when you have a special event for the day. This is daily habit to consciously make an effort to achieve. Ask yourself, how do you want to feel today? Comfortable? Stylish? Edgy? It's all possible!
Utilize The Good, Get Rid Of The Bad
One way to get into the habit of style self-care is to little by little, evaluate your pieces in your closet and ask yourself if they promote of positive attitude or a negative one (no, I am not asking you to go Marie-Kondo-ing your whole life). It's as simple as a piece a day. When I am getting dressed and I try on a blouse, I may decide I don't like the way it cuts across my shoulder or I'm not excited about the print or color anymore. This is a good time to pull it aside, off the hanger and into a bag you keep in your closet for consignment or donation. When that bag is full, it's time to consign or donate. This helps keep our closet negativity pieces to a minimum. That being said, don't do this if you think the piece is just not matching your mood that day. That's a different story. If you still love it and it still can instill confidence when you are in a particular mood, then it's ok to keep. This is my personal style when it comes to purging. I'm someone who believes something can spark joy one day but maybe not so much the next. As with lots of things in life, style is not always black and white. What's important is that it is your own.
The Science Behind It All
I'll leave with one final thought. There actually is a phenomenon that back in 2012 scientists dubbed "enclothed cognition." This is a theory thats simply says clothing does affect how we think. The theory says that clothing we wear, or that others wear, actually changes our thought patterns. This article by Emily Van Sonnenberg does a great job of explaining the scientific studies behind this relatively new phenomenon. However, this concept is not new. People have been wearing clothes essentially since the beginning of time and while this concept started out of necessity, it quickly turned into a form of art and expression. For me, it signals who I am today, where I am in the moment. The only person I think about when I get dressed, is me. If I feel happy, then I look happy. If I feel confident, then I exude confidence. If I feel powerful, then I embody power.
I also love to hear how style can be a form of self-care for you. Let's start a conversation in our community of FN-atics about our own unique forms of individual style. It energizes me even more and certainly promotes further self-care for me!