Reinventing your self-expression

Letting go.

A deeper look at reinventing your self-expression.

Ages ago I wrote an article called Find Your Own Style. If you haven’t read it, I think it is worth a visit. This is because this approach to style has been transforming the lives of people around me, all kinds of people, and I want to elaborate on it some more because of the power it has.

Since I wrote this a couple of other things have come up when I have been working with people on their style. Things about the influences that shape what we do today and why.

My partner Dave bears an uncanny resemblance to Michael Barrymore, and since MB is staying in Christchurch, we thought it would be fun for him to dress like MB and we would go to the Arts Centre market and see if anyone noticed. This meant hunting through the jeans and sweatshirts for something MB would wear, and we came up with a lemon silk shirt and natural coloured linen trousers. Well, he looked magnificent, quite different to the usual look he has. It got him thinking and he realised suddenly that he still dressed basically how he did when he was a rebellious teenager, and had never grown out of the habit except when dressing for work. Since then he has started wearing slacks instead of jeans, and as a look it really suits the kind of person he is.

I work with a group of adults ranging from senior managers to teachers, IT professionals, nurses etc. who are training to be leaders and I took 20 minutes out of a workshop to look at presentation. That 20 minutes has had the most amazing effect on several of these people. One woman who is naturally very thin, discovered that she dressed and wore her hair to try and hide how skinny she was because she hates ‘her skinny body’. So she hid under long thick hair and wore shoulder pads and baggy clothes, which didn’t suit her. Having seen this she has had her hair styled much shorter, and has changed the way she dresses and she looks wonderful. Another woman saw that she only ever dresses herself from sale items because her mother always used to say that she’d only grow out of it so why buy a good one. Without even realising it this has shaped her adult habits. She has transformed from an attractive but frankly frumpy mum into a stylish and confident, well groomed mum!

All of these people and many others, have found freedom to express themselves today by seeing something from the past and letting it go at last. It was in some cases a bit daunting to admit to themselves that they were stuck in a time warp, but it was worth it because of what is now possible.

I invite you to have a look and see what ‘rules’ you are still hanging onto from the past. Are you still rebelling, trying to please, dressing as if you are going to grow out of something? It may sound crazy but it is a very human way to think, and most of us do it in some area of our lives. If you can give those rules up, then there is a lot more room for your new sense of style to transform your experience of yourself.

How to give them up? Well, it’s easy. Once you know what it is you’ve been doing, it sort of goes away naturally. If you have a go let us know how it turns out!

Category: Articles