What is suitable for being dressed for success has changed throughout the years. In the 80’s it was all about strong shoulder pads and a red power suit which represented passion and strength. A navy blue suit paired with a white shirt conveyed the message of credibility and authority in the 90’s. Over the last decade a new business dress code and image has emerged, known as personal branding. This simply means taking individual ownership of ones first impression. If this is true why as a culture are we so quick to buy into today’s celebrity obsession of branded labels which expresses nothing unique or personal about you. Perhaps there are imposters living in your closet waiting to be given back to their rightful owners. This emerging trend may have you shackled up dressing in a mere cover choking the ownership rights out of your wardrobe. If there is an imposter living in your closet you can quickly arrest it by finding a quite place and completing this simple exercise down below.
If I were to ask you what is important to you about your image what would you say to me.
• Write down several adjectives which describe your personality and the way you want others to see you.
• Now look these words up in a dictionary and write down their definitions.
• Develop a mental image of how the person you have described on paper would be dressed and groomed if they were standing in front of you; include things such as: colour combinations, type of handbag, hair style, makeup, nails, shoes and other accessories they would have on.(having trouble? find some pictures to help you)
• Now walk to your closet and decide if the clothing which hangs before you represents the image you wrote down on paper. Also take a quick look in the mirror to see if your hair and makeup connect to your written image
• It might be a good idea to ask the opinion of someone else whom you trust for confirmation as it is possible to become delusional during this exercise and need the help of an interrogation officer to guide you to the truth and nothing but the truth
If you see a match you are on the right track. However, if there is a disconnect between what you see in your closet and reflected back in the mirror; to what you wrote on paper it is time to chain up the criminal offenders and make some adjustments. After all if your personal identity was stolen you would call the nearest fraud unit.
This exercise may take you some time to complete but all good things are worth the investment of your time. Besides, legends such as Katherine Hepburn are still remembered because they took the time to discover who they were and created that person into a visual representation. Taking individual ownership does not have to cost you everything you have but it does require knowing who you are. Take some time to get connected and watch how others will respond to your personal brand. Leslie Morris is the founder of Leslie Morris Image Consulting. She lives to help women create a magical bond with their wardrobe. www.lesliemorrisimage.com