How to find your personal style
Want to improve your look? Fed up of the same personal style you’ve had for years? Don’t know how to make a change that will suit you without making costly mistakes or spending time you haven’t got? Use this Insta wardrobe fundamentals blog, “How to find your personal style” to get you wearing clothes you love and loving what you wear in no time at all.
Coco Chanel said, “Fashion fades, style remains” and Yves Saint Laurent said, “Fashions fade, style is eternal”. We all recognise good style when we see it: confident women who look great and not only great, but individual, like themselves, like they are created to be. There are many different types of personal style. However, does it seem like everyone else looks great, has they own personal style, but you are yet to find yours?
How to find your personal style: It’s easier than you think
Don’t be deceived! Do not be downhearted because great personal style is achievable for all of us. Personal style is actually really easy to achieve because it’s fundamentally all about who you are. Very simply if you dress according to who you think you are and how you want to be in this life then firstly you’ll feel really good in your skin and secondly you’ll want to wear clothes that reflect how good you are feeling. When you engage at that level, of feeling good and wanting to look good and enjoying your clothes, your personal style will flow effortlessly out of that emotional state. You will discover that how to find your personal style is as much about find you as it is about choosing clothes to wear.
How to find your personal style: How we are thrown off track
Finding your personal style and the challenges of life
Unfortunately there are layers of distractions that take us away from our real selves. Layers of stress, of living up to someone else’s expectations, of responsibility, of family life. Yes, even the things we love, our spouses, our family, our jobs, careers, can all take us away from our real selves. If we don’t make a stake in the ground and stay strong with who we are then what we are can take over.
In other words the functions of our every day life, mother, sister, carer, photographer, doctor, designer, take over from who we are. Who we are is unique. There is no one else like you, no one else with your abilities, your gifts, your passions, your desires. What we are is not unique, it is a function, for example mother, wife, aunt, grandmother, writer, policewoman, artist. The way we carry out those responsibilities may be unique to us, but the function of them is not unique.
Finding your personal style and losing your identity
Having a baby, a long term illness, a change in career, a new life phase are all life situations which may cause us to think we have lost our identify. Over many years designing and making dresses for my clients I have observed that when women feel lost as to who they are it is rarely because they don’t know, it is more likely because they have forgotten. If you feel you have lost sight of your personal style I suggest you take stock of your life and see where there are times where you are able to be “who” you are and also see where you are “what” you are. I have an amazing way of helping you to do this and have created a step by step process to which shows you how to find your personal style. I guide you through this process below.
How to find your personal style: the zone of peace and why we all need our own
Personal style is important because it is one way in which we non-verbally communicate our character to the world. If there is a correlation between what is going on in our heads and hearts (the inner you) and what is going on in the way we express ourselves in the way we dress, (the outer you) then there is peace. In fact, I’ve called it the Zone of Peace. It’s the place where the inner you meets the outer you and there is agreement between the two and peace reigns.
So, if you find yourself feeling that you need a personal style restart or that you’ve lost your way and want to get back to feeling and looking as great as you once did, you’ve come to the right place. Here is a really easy strategy that you can do during a coffee break which is simple and effective and will get you right back in that Zone of Peace. Not only that but it will probably get you excited and reenergised about being who you are and what you want to wear.
How to find your personal style: An easy guide to the zone of peace
How to find your personal style step 1:
Take a piece of paper and divide it into two through the middle.
- Title one side “Who” and one side “What”. On the “What” side write out all the activities you ‘do’ when you are being something to someone else. This is the list I wrote about above, that is what we are to other people: wife, mother, carer, secretary, doctor.
- In the second column, the “Who” side, write down the activities that you undertake when you are being you. It could be volunteering, exercising, painting, dancing. They can also be purely descriptive rather than functional categories. For example, ‘ballet fan’ featured in my who list as did ‘experience maker’. It can also be work, there is nothing wrong with that and one activity can be entered into both columns. For example, ‘mother’ may feature in the ‘what’ column because it is a function where you are acting out a certain role It can also be in the ‘who’ column though as for many women, being a mother is a foundational experience and they identify with it and are happy to identify with it very much. Your work can feature in both columns. This list should not take long to compile, 10-20 minutes.
How to find your personal style step 2:
Now, find a quiet time and place where you will be undisturbed. Pick 1 item from your “who” category. Remember this is the category that is about being who you are, not what you are.
- Take 10 minutes to see yourself being that identity, Envisage what you are doing, who you are doing it with. Imagine where you are, how you are feeling. Imagine yourself enjoying that activity.
- Now imagine what you are wearing. It may be quite surprising to you but you may actually see this picture appear quite quickly. If it does appear quite quickly, write it down. Imagine how your hair is, what jewellery and accessories you are wearing. Imagine your hair colour, your make up, even your scent. Imagine it all before you and enjoy the picture you are seeing in your mind. Wait with the picture until you have a strong image in your mind, it might be like a video, with or without sound. It might involve other people.
- Make a note of where your mind goes. When you have a strong image in your mind, write down all the details of it that you can remember.
How to find your personal style step 3:
The final part of the exercise is to then choose one item from your “what” list. We are gong to translate all those positive feelings and great images from your ‘who’ picture over to one of your ‘doing’ activities. So, for example, as your ‘what’, choose your job.
- Picture yourself again in your ‘who’ phase, the one we did above.
- Then when you have got right back to where you were before, picture yourself at work, you should have two images of yourself in the picture at the moment.
- Let the ‘who’ walk over to that ‘what’ and let them become one.
- Now imagine yourself as the ‘what’, the ‘job’ you. Now, start to picture what you are wearing how you are going about your every day work activities in your job, from the perspective of the ‘who’ you. What does your hair look like? What shoes and accessories do you have? What jewellery are you wearing? Stay with this picture as long as it takes to get a full picture of you. Fully enjoy the picture, enjoy being there, imagine that it is your best day at work.
- Now open your eyes and write down everything that you saw. If you need to or would like to, shut your eyes one more time, to pick up a little more detail or to get a fully rounded out picture of this ‘what’ you in your job. Let this take as long as it needs, but not more than 30 minutes. Stay focussed but relaxed. If the exercise only takes 10 or 15 minutes that is absolutely fine. You don’t want to fall asleep or start thinking about what to eat for supper.
How to find yourself through your personal style: What did you discover?
Now, this is the best bit. How do you feel? What were you wearing in that picture? Did anything surprise you? Exercises like this help to release your brain from the narrow constraints you may have put it into, so chances are you will have learnt something about yourself, about your personal style, that will help you reconnect with looking amazing every day.
Both of these images will give you a powerful idea about what your personal style is, especially if you feel slightly stuck. For example if you saw yourself at the ballet dressed in a short, chic shift dress rather than a long, flowy gown, then this tells you something very powerful about your personal style. If you wear trousers to work but saw yourself in a dress and jacket combination that this is also telling you something very powerful about your own personal style and changes you can make to live more authentically you.
How to find your personal style: Conclusions
I hope you loved this post. I have really enjoyed learning about my own personal style and taking the time to really visualise how I want to look that will make me feel my best every day. Please do give it a go, it’s great fun and can be really revealing too. Please let me know how you get on in the comments section below. I will be sure to respond to you.
If you are looking for another easy challenge or want to read more why not check out other posts in the Wardrobe Fundamentals series. The first one, address organising your wardrobe out and finding clothes you really want to wear. The second blog post covers how to put together amazing outfits Coming up next in this series is the final one, covering buying the best clothes for your shape and personality.
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