“It is only the shallow people who do not judge by appearances.” Oscar Wilde, The Portrait of Dorian Gray, 1891
Getting a Balance
I know, when I am writing about clothes, that there are more important concerns in the world. With so much violence, death, despair and suffering going on globally it would be understandable to take the attitude of “all hands to the pump!” “Rescue Burundi!” “Rescue Eritrea!”, “Save Syria!”, “Save England!” for that matter. And yet, despite, an inner acknowledgment of the importance of connection with our fellow man, I also know that my creativity and my joy in communicating my thoughts in dressing well each and every day are gifts which I need to exercise. And I suppose I should rejoice that I am safe and live in an environment where I can exercise my gifts.
What are your gifts
Strange though it seems that whereas I could be a nurse on my way to feed or heal people in desperate need of help, my peculiar gifting is to wardrobe, clothes and appearance. Maybe that will change one day, but in the meantime what I need to do is to exercise those gifts to the fullest of my abilities. This applies to you and your gifting too Whatever your gift is, do it to the best of your ability. I don’t know what your’s is. Your gift may be hospitality, that people always have a great time with you, and feel valued when they are with you. It my be that your gifts are organisation, or administration, or that you’re an artist and you create, or a dancer and you dance. What is it that you uniquely bring, that no one has in the exact way that you do? It is that unique gift that only you have in the way that you have it, which you spend the rest of your life developing and drawing out.
Take time to think about what your gifting is. Can you name it? Women are very good at juggling and just getting on with things, so it’s very easy to become jack of all trades, master of none. Sometimes we need to take a step back from mending the loo (via a YouTube video, I was very proud of myself), unblocking drains, learning how to do maths in order to help with homework, and remember that we do have something that we are good at, particularly good at. And then we need to go and do that thing.
The Importance of Being You
To me, it matters hugely that I, and by extension you, don’t go through life feeling uncomfortable with myself/yourself. We need to feel, like the French say, “bien dans sa peau”, good in our skin. I had various puppy fat teenage years after having been a very slim child which left me feeling rather ugly when all around me seemed to be long limbed and lithe. Additionally, the 80s, when I was a teenager, were not a great time, sartorially, for anyone not feeling 110% about themselves, heralding in the age of the supermodel and with it a raised bar for women to be deemed beautiful. I thought the original supermodels were gorgeous, because they were. And somewhere inside me, I still think if I do yoga long enough I’ll look like Christy, or have the right hair cut I’ll look like Linda. But why look like a second rate them, when I can look like a first rate me?
A Woman of High Importance
This is why I’m interested in what’s in your wardrobe. What is your outward appearance saying about your inner self. How does your inner self manifest itself outwardly? Clothing is about so much more than fashion. Fashion says, “Wear this to be acceptable”, clothing says, “How are you going to wear me to show others who you are?”
So, what is your thing? What is your gifting? What do you know that you are not doing, that you could be doing, and which would give you immense amount of joy? Or, if you know what it is and are doing it, then please share that with us too. What makes you smile? What are you doing when you lose track of time? Let me know in the comments box below. Also, if you are not regularly exercising your gifting, what could you do to easily incorporate it back into your routine? I look forward to reading your comments, to know how I can help and to hear what you have to say.