An anonymous commenter had this request:
I’d love to read your thoughts about the difference between self-love and vanity. I work at a university, and I know you do, too. Sometimes I feel that my colleagues look down on my love of fashion and style – “the life of the mind vs. the life of the mall.” (That’s not original, btw.) Now that so many people dress down, can you offer some support to those that like to dress up? Or, at least, put some thought into their clothes?
Originally posted 2009-09-16 05:42:00.
Try this out.
- Write a list of words that describe your body, both good and bad. Include anything and everything that comes to your mind, and keep going for at least 25 adjectives. Are you “strong,” “short,” “disproportionate,” “sexy,” “huge,” “clumsy,” “stocky,” or “delicate”?
- Next to each word, put a + if you feel that it’s a positive attribute, and a – if you feel that it’s a negative attribute.
- Now, examine your negatives. Next to each negative,write the reason you feel this adjective applies to your body. Be honest, and take your time doing this. (You can feel free to do this for the positives, too, but this is mainly meant to reverse ingrained negative body thinking.)
When forced to articulate your reasoning, you’ll see how much you’re unconsciously exaggerating negative perceptions of yourself. For example, let’s say you wrote “wrinkly.” What’s your reasoning? Are you seriously and deeply creased all over your body? Do passersby yell, “Raisin!” at you, and then scamper off, laughing? Say you wrote, “out of shape.” Are you comparing your current body to a body you once had? Or the body of someone else? Are you so out of shape that you can’t climb a flight of stairs, or lift a bag of groceries, or walk your dog?
Originally posted 2009-09-09 05:58:00.
A few weeks back, Make Do Style left this brain-bender of a comment:
I worry when someone tries to link style with science. Science is the old paternalistic logical view of the world and fashion is a feminine space and offers a challenge to such traditional imposed views. Each to their own, but give me downright frivolity, creative indulgence any time – when it comes to style and fashion be inspired, take risks and avoid logic!
I completely agree that trying and experimenting and going with your gut are all vital to exploring personal style. If you only ever do what books or experts tell you to do, you may look as tall and thin and young as possible … but you might look deadly dull as well. Splashing out, being frivolous, and unleashing your curiosity and creativity help shape a style that is living and unique and vibrant.
Originally posted 2009-09-08 05:42:00.