An opportunity to visit New York in a few months means I’m not heading back to Paris until April next year. But the long lead time doesn’t mean I’m not in full on Paris planning mode.
I love how there is always something to do in Paris, no matter how many times you have visited.
One thing I will definitely be doing on my next trip is following the advice of Jo from frugal first class travel and enjoying afternoon tea at the Ritz. If I could have booked my table as soon as I’d finished reading Jo’s post I would have.
But I’ve got to tell you, once upon a time I would never have considered setting foot in the Paris Ritz. Not because I had no interest in the famous establishment. Truth be told, I’ve wanted to visit for as long as I can remember.
No, the reason I would not have wandered into the Ritz – or any of the other fancy Parisian destinations for that matter – was that I didn’t think I was good enough. And specifically, I wouldn’t have been dressed well enough to not raise eyebrows.
Now let’s be clear here. I’ve always had some great clothes. And certainly some Ritz worthy outfits. But I’ve also had the voice in my head. The one that whispered that I looked frumpy, even when I was wearing something expensive or that had been chosen especially for a particular occasion. The same voice that snarkily pointed out how classy everyone else looked – and how ‘ordinary by comparison’ I was.
Yes. That murmuring in my mind not only stopped me from living out some of my desires but it also diminished the enjoyment of some of the things that I actually wrangled up the courage to do. Let’s face it. There is nothing worse than arriving anywhere and then spending all your time thinking about your clothes and that you don’t look good enough.
Over time, I’ve worked hard to remedy my thinking. I’ve focussed on both my style itself and my style mindset. And I’m very pleased to share that I no longer hold myself back from anything simply because I don’t think I look the part. And the confidence that I now have when it comes to style has spread to other areas of my life.
Is Your Style Stopping You?
Your style – and your associated thoughts about how you look – could be holding you back in more areas of your life than you realise. Apart from the kind of scenarios I’ve outlined above, you might also be limiting yourself from:
- Going for a new job, starting a new hobby or travelling somewhere special;
- Dating someone new or making new friends;
- Wearing clothes you love because you are over a certain age or because you don’t feel good about your body.
It’s always worth digging into any resistance you feel about ‘putting yourself out there’ to understand whether it is your style stopping you.
Build Your Confidence
If you do discover that your thoughts around your style are creating barriers between you and your desires, here are a couple of quick tips that can help you overcome the challenge and build confidence in how you present yourself to the world.
- Spend some time developing some ‘go to’ outfits. Putting in the effort to wear clothing that you love and that you have especially chosen because they complement your style personality, your silhouette and your colouring builds confidence and takes away any feelings of ‘I should have tried harder’.
- Invest in some classic pieces over time. Having classics that you can turn to consistently gives you a strong foundation to build your outfits upon. And they can save you money in the long run. So often we think we need to buy something new to feel good at a particular event. But it’s just as likely that we will fall for purchasing something that isn’t right for us, and end up feeling worse because we’ve also wasted our hard earned cash.
- Do some work on your mindset. Remembering that life is short and that there are enough obstacles in our lives without us letting our clothes slow us down is sometimes all that’s needed to silence those pesky voices.
Is your style stopping you at moment? Are there things that you’d dearly love to do that you’ve held yourself back from because of style? Or has style never been a barrier for you. Regardless of your answer, I’d love for you to share your thoughts in the comments section below.
And until next time – au revoir.
P.S. If you are thinking you could do with some additional style support to ensure you don’t miss out on any of the good stuff life has on offer, make sure you check out the new opportunities to work with me.
Photo Credit: Haute Chocolate