“In fashioning myself, I fashion man,” the great existentialist philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre once said. Although he talked about being an influence on other human beings by acting according to a reasonable moral standard, he might have been speaking about the flair for dressing stylishly as well.
The art of fashion has existed since the stone age when our ancestors discovered that wearing gray wolf-pelts over a boar-skin coat didn’t just keep people warm – it also made them look distinguished and less cave-man-ish. Looking good and feeling good about your appearance is a part of being alive and being human.
It should be something that comes naturally and conveniently, regardless of the occasion.
Whether you’re dressing up for a party, a charity event, or a business meeting, here are three advantages to being the best-dressed person in the room.
1. People Notice You
Getting attention is the most apparent benefit of dressing well. But this also comes with an innate responsibility to carry oneself as if you own the clothes, not the other way around. It’s tough, and we get it. It’s especially tough when you’re moving in a crowd filled with influencers, business people, and your peers. Suddenly, it’s not just about the clothes anymore. It’s about you. It’s about what you can bring to the table.
The temptation to slink off and not stand out can often be overwhelming. But if you find the inner strength to return everyone else’s smile, shake their hands, and reflect the admiration they’ve given back at them, you become a conduit for their optimism and aspirations.
When you look good and feel good, everyone else does too.
2. Dressing Well Is A Non-Verbal Handshake
Humans are visual creatures. Despite what every self-help book says about appreciating your inner beauty, social interactions begin with a glance. How you present yourself to the world invites others to see who you really and what you’re capable of.
Take, for example, the simple act of rolling up your sleeves. It’s a visual gesture, a symbol that pronounces to the room that you’re either getting ready to work hard or preparing to stand your ground and fight. But even this simple act requires a bit of social intelligence and finesse. While it’s perfectly acceptable to roll up your sleeves while working at your office desk or at a casual office party, it’s a definite fashion faux pas to do so during a formal event.
Keep in mind that old saying, “a picture paints a thousand words.” It’s always a smart strategy to make a robust impact before saying a single sentence. This way, your colleagues and superiors will be more receptive to your ideas and opinions.
3. Life Just Falls Into Place When You Build Up Your Appearance
Remember that scene in Kevin Costner’s film, “Field of Dreams,” where a mysterious voice tells the main character, “if you build it, they will come?”
That concept also applies to dressing-up fashionably. Structuring your appearance is akin to structuring your identity. It’s an extension of yourself, a non-verbal way of telling others that you’re building a presence in this world – that you exist, and you matter.