Some of you won’t like what I’m about to say. Some of you will vehemently disagree and like me a bit less for saying it. But I’m going to say it anyway and the reason why is because I don’t write these messages in an attempt to gain your approval. I write them because I love you. I want to see you be your best version of yourself most days and compassionate and loving toward yourself on the days you just can’t.
So in an attempt to help you reach those two goals, today I’m telling you to do something so simple but often neglected:
I understand the temptation to stay in pajamas or sweats all day. I really do get it. They’re comfy and if you’re going to be home all day, why bother with getting dressed, right?
First, getting dressed is the way we begin a day when we have something important to do. Staying in your stretchy pants is telling yourself you don’t have anything important to do. This will make the things you do spend your time doing feel insignificant and they really are not. Taking care of your home and making grilled cheese for your kids might not always feel glamorous, but I assure you it is important work.
Second, when you tell yourself you don’t have anything important to do by staying in your hoodie and slippers, you are less likely to get to the things you have planned. You’ll feel lethargic and act (or not act) accordingly. A self-fulfilling prophesy if you will.
Some of you are saying, “No, no… I’m not like that. I get a lot done even when I don’t get dressed. It’s just that if I’m not really going to see anyone, why bother with brushing my hair or putting on makeup.” My third point is for you. The person you should be most concerned with impressing when it comes to your appearance or anything else is yourself. Your relationship with yourself is the background music for your entire life. If you respect and appreciate yourself, you’ll be more effective in every single thing you do from your relationships to your goals to your laundry. If you feel better about yourself with a little lip-gloss on, then gloss up. Your ratty old t-shirt from college might feel soft on your skin, but what does it say to your spirit about its’ value?
Fourth, it’s good for your kids. You might think your kids don’t notice and you’re right…they need and love you no matter what you look like. But kids are very intuitive about your energy, your emotions, and your view of yourself. When you feel confident and respect yourself, they feel it. When they think about their mom and picture their mom, what kind of woman do you want them to have in mind? My guess is it’s someone who loves and respects herself enough to take care of herself. Every day. No matter what’s on her agenda.
Finally, it’s great for your marriage. I know I just said that the only one you should dress to impress is yourself and I meant it. Perhaps your husband has opinions about what you wear or maybe he doesn’t really notice. Either way, getting dressed every day in something you feel good in, will improve your marriage because while he may not notice your outfit, he will notice the tone it sets. He’ll notice if is wife is more confident. He’ll notice if she is happier, more fulfilled, and stronger and my guess is that’s exactly what he wants for you.
You don’t have to spend a lot of money on clothes. You don’t have to follow any particular trend. You don’t have to dress up fancy…but please try this. Unless you are sick or have a sleepless newborn who has made you part vampire, get dressed and put yourself together each morning. You will feel better and show up better.
On the days I coach clients I dress in business attire, and yes, I do all of my coaching over the phone. I want to make sure and provide my clients with a professional experience and to hold the space for them as I’ve been trained to do. Dressing professionally helps me do that.
Sometimes when I vacuum I wear my daughter’s tiara. For fun. To make my kids laugh and be silly but also to remind myself I’m doing regal work when I’m taking care of my home and my family.
Before going to the gym I put on blush and lip-gloss. Not because of the people I will see there, but because I will see myself in the larger-than-life mirrors in class and when I look healthy, I act healthy. I exercise because I love my body, not because I hate it. When I feel good about how I look in my gym class, I work even harder.
At night after washing my face and brushing my teeth, I put on a squirt of perfume. I like to smell good when I get in bed. Why not?
My ways are not necessarily your ways, but I would challenge you to think about what makes you feel good and do that. Dress like the woman you want to become. Most of us don’t aspire to be the sweat pant lady. Who do you aspire to be? What will she wear tomorrow?
Make it a great week.