Where I grew up in North Dakota, Sunday was the day you wore your best clothes. I mean the very best! I’d go to church in my shiny patent Mary Janes, my fanciest dress, my prettiest coat, a hat and maybe gloves.
Recently I started wondering if anybody thinks about wearing their best on Sunday or any day of the week?
Now I know many of you do that already. You think about looking your best every day. You put together an outfit that is pleasing to you and you go into your day feeling confident. Kudos to you, my friend!
Dress codes sink low
Dress codes have gotten so relaxed that I’m sure some people feel funny if they dress up just a little bit because no one around them is doing it.
This was very clear recently when we were working with a new client who wanted help with her style and looking sharper than she normally does. We’d had a shopping trip and she got several fun things. We were going to meet her in her closet to put outfits together with her new things so she could clearly understand the blueprint of her stepped up style.
When we got to her closet she was anxious. She’d gone to a community meeting at a neighbor’s house to support a local candidate in an upcoming election. She wore her normal rolled up jeans but added the new cute heeled sandals that she’d purchased on the shopping trip.
She said, “All of my neighbors were dressed so casually. I felt out of place.”
I pointed out a couple of things.
One: She’d called us to help her step up her style. Automatically this would mean moving away from our overly saturated casual fashion climate. I sympathized with her. She couldn’t expect to fit in with a dress code that’s sunk so low. She would feel like she’s sticking out from the rest. But was that a bad thing? I cited a case where we worked with another client who decided she wanted to look decent even if she was just hanging out at Starbuck’s. Her friends noticed the change right away and within a few weeks, they started looking better in their outfits. Her friends credited her for motivating them to put some effort into how they looked. Looking different turned into a leadership thing!
Two: I suggested to our client that she consider a different criteria altogether for getting dressed. “You can dress for the pure pleasure it brings you,” I told her. I knew how much pleasure those shoes brought her. The day she bought them she walked around the shoe department radiant and beaming. “Why deny yourself the enjoyment of enjoying how you look?” I asked. “Dressing to please yourself can come first.”
Three: We’ve all heard this one before: Just because someone else is doing it, it doesn’t mean you have to follow. So if everyone else is dressing like they’re about to organize the garage, it doesn’t mean we have to! Isn’t that a relief?
Our client looked darling in her new “stepped up” wardrobe. It only made sense to enjoy it because if not now, when?
Don’t miss out!
Getting dressed can be such a personal, loving act. It’s nurturing and kind. It’s respectful. If you don’t officially need to dress your Sunday best for something specific, maybe you can do it anyway.
Today whether you’re praising your version of the Divine, praising the day you’ve been given, or praising the ground you stand on, you can do it with your head held high, and a smile on your face while wearing an outfit that pleases you like crazy.
Can I get an Amen on this?
P.S. All this Sunday best talk has me thinking about my favorite hymns. Here are two CD collections that I especially love in case you’re an aficionado of gospel songs. Wait, does anybody listen to CDs anymore? Well, you might find them on Spotify as well. Enjoy!
How Great Thou Art by Elvis Presley (a 2 CD set)
Hymn by The American Boychoir available on Amazon