Research shows that dressing our bodies with clothes that echo our unique emotional and physical characteristics bring us confidence, vitality and happiness. Our wardrobe turns out to be an indispensable therapy tool, as it is the most accessible to us to becoming the best version of ourselves.
Your wardrobe is a toolbox filled with instruments that can help you create the life you always imagined having. The clothes you wear are the instruments of that possibility - with your instruments you decide how you want to feel and what it is that you wish to achieve. When shopping, I guarantee you that the majority of people do not buy their clothes thinking: I am buying this top because it will support me in feeling good and confident.
Like a second skin, clothing is an extension of who we are. We tell the world the who, the what, the where, and the when of our lives by what we intentionally choose to dress our bodies with. So, the wardrobe, for most people is a place filled with stuff that reflects our internal life. And for many of us, this very same place is a PRISON. A kind of dark, sad, messy place that is keeping us stuck and powerless – stopping us from moving on with our life.
But it doesn’t have to be that way, hence why I renamed it the authentic curated wardrobe which is filled with pieces that provide you with immediate access to feeling good, in control and empowered.
WE WITNESS PEOPLE'S STORIES ALL THE TIME.
Have you ever asked yourself “what was she thinking?” after noticing a fashion disaster? What we choose to wear is a pure reflection of what we are thinking and what we are feeling. And someone’s fashion disasters are simply her/his inner conflicts coming up to the surface.
We love to accumulate clothes in our wardrobes – and you can discover all sorts of stories in them – from someone suffering from grief, depression, fear of ageing, inner conflicts, shopping addiction, shame and embarrassment.
We judge! We are quick to judge and criticise people as we do to ourselves. It’s what we do, us human beings. We are brilliant at it. But imagine, if instead, we were to ask ourselves “what is going on inside of her/him?” and stop once and for all judging and instead accept each other for who we are. You may have heard this quote from Jonathan Anthony Burkett:
You know my name, not my story. You’ve heard what I’ve done, but not what I’ve been through.
Open the door of your wardrobe, tell me, what do you see? What are your stories? Everything that you own in your wardrobe is the result of an inner, unconscious choice.
A wardrobe filled with lots of oversized, baggy clothes may belong to a woman who feels self-conscious about carrying extra weight. She chooses to wear shapeless, baggy clothes because she wants to hide the body that she loathes and wants to stop criticism from other people. She might use food to comfort herself because food makes her troubles disappear. Or she might be that woman with a collection of brand new, unworn pieces, still with their price tags attached to them; perhaps she is a compulsive shopper struggling with a shopping addiction. Maybe she uses shopping as a way to distract herself and to forget the worries that preoccupy her mind.
For many of us, looking in our wardrobes can start a stressful inner dialogue, causing pain and desperation. The little voice starts talking, and there is nothing that seems to make it stop. Just the thought of opening that wardrobe can ruin our day because that little voice starts talking again. I am too fat. I am a failure. I am still single. I am not good enough. I am ugly.
When you dress with intention, you can really decide how you want to feel and make this feeling happen. Clothes can make you feel and look good… or they can make you feel and look miserable. You get to choose how you want to feel…and how you want to look.
Your wardrobe should uplift you, not bring you down.
You were born unique – there is only one of you in this entire world. Dressing your truth is a skill, and it takes practice. It requires many essential elements that support your true nature, your body shape, your inner essence and everything that you need to show up as the beautiful true you in your clothes.
Remind yourself that it is your life. And it has nothing to do with people’s opinion on how they think you should live.
When your wardrobe is filled with clothes that fit like a second skin, clothes that reflect your personality, complement your body shape and enhance your greatest strengths and assets, then dressing anytime, for any situation, is an enjoyable and amazing experience.
Imagine opening the door of your wardrobe where everything looks like it was made just for you. This is your authentic curated wardrobe.
SO, WHERE DO YOU START?
Too big, or too small: Get rid of clothing items that don’t fit you. If you have lost some weight, well done and believe in yourself that you will keep it off. I recommend letting go of all your larger items that no longer fit your body. Holding onto them can affect your willpower and can turn into a self-fulfilling prophecy of gaining the weight again.
On the opposite side, let go of your items that are too small and no longer fit you. Staring at them can bring you down. They just remind you that “I am too fat” and “I will never be that slim again”, which is not how you want to feel when you get dressed first thing in the morning.
De-clutter: Empty your wardrobe of all your old, tatty or worn out pieces. Give them to people who need them or donate them to a charity shop.
Get rid of all your single items in your wardrobe. What I mean by that is if a piece doesn’t make you look radiant and terrific, if it cannot be worn with anything else then it is using too much room in your wardrobe – and do not belong in it.
Ask yourself, would you buy this item again if you saw it in the shop today? If you wouldn’t, then give it away or donate it.
Keeping your wardrobe in order and clutter-free brings you peace of mind, knowing that your life is under your control. Plus, before you can start bringing new additions of clothing into your wardrobe, you need to make room by removing the ones that do not support you. In a tidy and neat wardrobe, you will find what you need, always end up looking the way you want to look and are guaranteed to project the image of that woman you aspire to be.
If you love how you look, you are going to feel more confident.
DISCOVER WHO YOU ARE: And most importantly, learn what your authentic curated wardrobe should look like; the styles, colours, fabrics and patterns which belong to your body. Create a wardrobe where every single item echoes the essence of YOU… And be that woman who owns a wardrobe filled with outfits which radiate good energy, certainty, and joy.
Melanie is an Image Therapist, Facialist and Feminine Empowerment Coach based in central London. She offers Authentic Image Transformation from the inside out for women ready to elevate their personal and professional life.