Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood. – Ralph Waldo Emerson
How important are your looks? Do you spend hours each day ensuring not one hair is out of place? Will you be seen at the grocery store without makeup? Or do you just roll out of bed and put on whatever smells the least?
At some level, we all follow a dress code (and I hope hygiene) every day at work, play or just lounging at home. Self-esteem is linked to how you think others perceive you. When you are shopping in a store, chances are that if you walk into a shop wearing mismatched pajamas, you probably will have little luck getting service. Like it or not, how you dress matters.
Now for the hard stuff! As a mom, leader, and a woman over 40, I tend to dress a certain way. I don’t resemble a frump muffin and I don’t want to look as though I have taken over my daughter’s closet either. For this prompt, I wanted to get way out of my comfort zone by dressing like a hooker on 4th Street (a Reno thing).
For my 40th birthday, my girlfriend gave me a crazy pair of stripper shoes that I wore that night and haven’t touched since. These shoes were perfect for my new daytime look. I also found a pair of really short shorts and a hot pink cashmere tank (OK I had to have a touch of cashmere). In order to keep a slightly subtle look, I smeared lipstick on my face and called it a day. My 13 year-old son Sam snapped this photo of me.
How does it feel stepping outside my box?
When I was putting this whole hair-brained scheme together, the look started with the pole dancer shoes. Rather than worrying about how ridiculous I may look, I was more concerned that if I took a picture with sandals on, I needed a pedicure! So, I ran to the local nail salon and got my toes all pretty (not that you can see them in the picture, but a little pampering goes a long way).
How does it feel to dress like someone other than me? Am I embarrassed to post this picture on my blog? Maybe I should be, but I am not. One of the greatest lessons I learned is that the packaging may change, but I am the same person no matter what.
I would not dream of going to work dressed like this. I probably would not go shopping dressed this way either. Since I recently lost 30lbs, I am much more comfortable with my body in general.
What am I saying by wearing this?
I need to look good because it makes me feel good. When I decided to take off the extra weight I put on after starting grad school, I did it for me. My husband Robert never asked it of me. In general, I feel more confident, pretty, and professional when I am well put together. As for the shoes, they are great, but I can only walk in heels like this for about 1-2 hours.
I need to dress business professional at work. I need to wear shoes to go into a restaurant. I should wear a swimsuit if I am going to Lake Tahoe. I wanted to dress like a hooker for this post. How do you need to dress? What does it say about how you feel about yourself?
#trust30 prompt: Mess up your hair. If you are wearing makeup – smudge it. If you have a pair of pants that don’t really fit you – put them on. Put on a top that doesn’t go with those pants. Go to your sock drawer. Pull out two socks that don’t match. Different lengths, materials, colors, elasticity.
Now two shoes. You know the drill. Need to add more? Ties? Hair clips? Stick your gut out? I trust you to go further.
Take a picture. Get ready to post it online.
Are you feeling dread? Excitement? Is this not the image you have of yourself? Write about the fear or the thrill that this raises in you? Who do you need to look good for and what story does it tell about you? Or why don’t you care? Author: Matthew Stillman