She showed up in a casual dress.
I took one look at her and said, “I’ll be right back. I need to change.” I went upstairs and put on my own dress.
As I went upstairs a little voice in my head was saying, "What the hell are you doing? Why are you changing clothes? What is this all about?"
My point exactly.
This change of clothes prompted a really great conversation as we made our way down the hill to the pub. It’s actually a conversation that I have had a few times now.
When you get dressed, who is it for?
I look at them and say, “Wow.” (Yes, there is a part of me that is a little jealous. I mean, they look hot.)
But, I also know it’s not really my thing.
A few days after my change of clothes with my friend, I was at the park with my daughter and noticed another woman wearing a tight pencil skirt, a silk blouse, and some wedge heels. Meanwhile, I was in shorts and a t-shirt.
I tried not to judge (really, I did), but I just didn’t understand the wardrobe choice. I mean, she was at the playground with her kids. I usually get sweaty and/or dirty at the playground.
Okay, she may have just gotten off of work, or may have been going to a fancy dinner later, but..
It made me wonder, who do we really getting dressed for?
When we put on the dress, make-up and heels, or the expensive collared shirt and pressed pants...
- Is it for ourselves, so we feel confident, powerful and perhaps a little sexy?
- Is it so that other people will compliment us and give us a temporary boost to our self-esteem?
- Is it to please others (like our partners, bosses, or potential suitors)?
- Is it to fit in with the mainstream culture?
- Is it combination?
- Or is it for another reason altogether?
I don’t really have an answer to my own questions, but I think it depends.
On a day to day basis, I am confident enough to wear what I wear because it makes me feel good and comfortable, regardless of what other people might think. I step up my game if I have a client meeting or am teaching a workshop, so that I feel more professional. I do put on a dress, on occasions that warrant it, usually so I that I fit in with what everyone else might be wearing. Do I get dressed in order to get compliments? I hope not, but underneath my ego is probably searching for some.
What about you?
Who do you get dressed for?
If you do get dressed for someone else, what else might you be doing for them?
(Read more about 'your everybody' in this blog post)