Dressing for Confidence: How to Use Color to Inspire Your Style

Dressing for Confidence: How to Use Color to Inspire Your Style

I have this glorious idea of how I will spend my time when such day arrives that I fulfill a life-long dream and vacation to the city of lights, the city of pastries, romance and love. 

The one and only splendor of Paris. 

Oh, I plan to drink in all her beauty with child-like wonder and amazement.  With wide eyes I will walk the streets and behold the old charm of her architecture.  I long to delve deep into her museums to learn her history, enjoy her artisans and be intoxicated by her lure. 

I can imagine the succulence of fresh baked croissants, warm and almost melting with every bite.  The aroma of bread, baking in the café. 

I even know what I’m going to wear.

I have envisioned this outfit for as long as I can remember.  I want red heels.  I mean bright, crunchy, candy apple, light-catching, deliciously tempting red heels.  A blue, polka-dot ruffled skirt and a crisp white blouse.  A string of pearls will adorn my neck and I will be a full-on Parisian girl. 

Polka dots in Paris.

Someday I will wear polka dots in Paris.

Would I still enjoy my trip in stripes or paisley?  More than likely.  However, there is something about polka dots that just makes me feel like I’m part of the culture, the scene, and that I belong.

That’s the funny thing about being a girl, what we wear has the ability to let our true selves shine a little brighter. 

It’s a form of expression, a way to speak to the world without saying a word. It’s not about a particular brand or style, or owning who’s-who and keeping up with “fashions” and “trends.”  It’s about how you feel in what you wear.

Clothing can have significant influence over us. 

We want to feel like modern, dominating women.  We want to say, “I dictate how I feel!  I wear my clothes, they don’t wear me!”  Honestly, how you express yourself to the world has the ability to change your own mood, inspire confidence and promote feelings of motivation and success.

Want to feel like you’re conquering the world?  Put on what makes you feel most confident. 

Want to feel warm and connected to the people around you?  Toss on your husband’s sweatshirt or pin that paper flower in your hair that your kid made you in school yesterday.  These things have the ability to affect how we feel about ourselves and others.

You may be thinking nonsense, I feel like my fabulous self no matter what I wear. 

Girlfriend, good for you! 

You have unlocked a confidence achievement level that some of us are still out here striving for!  You take that confidence and promote it brightly!  For the rest of us, what we wear can boost our mental and emotional processes in how we take on the world.

According to BrainFodder.com, “Research says the quickest little fix for a bad day is to wear brightly colored clothes. Cheerful colors work as a mini pick-me-up; and thus boosting our mood and energy. Also, we associate bright colors with happiness, sunny days, and carefree times (like the summer vacations when we were kids).”  Check out the rest of the article here.

The great news?  You do not have to be a fashionista to achieve this feeling!  Perhaps style is the furthest thing from your mind or is one of those “skills-I-wish-I-had” kinda things.  That’s ok!  You do not  have to feel less that absolutely beautiful in your own skin or with what you wear. The idea is that you feel like your best self in how you choose to express yourself to the world.  Want some pointers?

  • Inspiring Self-Confidence in Your Wardrobe

Every morning I go through this routine where I select my outfit based on my mood.  From my hairstyle all the way down to my intimates.  I am soooooo far from making it on the pages of a fashion magazine, but I choose pieces that inspire what I want to accomplish on any given day.  Today I wanted to feel bold and I had an agenda for the morning that would keep me busy.  I wanted to feel motivated to not only start these tasks but to also finish them, so I chose a skirt with dominating stripes in bright green, black and gray.  Green inspires growth and harmony and I desired to feel optimistic and hopeful throughout my day. 

I did not have to go out and buy a new wardrobe to accomplish this feeling.  I selected what I had on hand that would suit the mood I wanted to achieve.

  • Bright Colors as a Mood Booster
    The charming thing about color is absolutely the way it makes us feel!  Yellow is for joy, optimism and the color of flowers you choose to convey friendship.  Use this chart for great color reference:
Image source: Pinterest – SeeJaneWork
  • Staying Classy and Sassy
    Let us remember that less isn’t always more!  Sometimes more is more.  Although we want to feel like the amazing, beautiful creatures that we are, we can also stay classy, sassy and sophisticated by leaving a little mystery to the eye.  We absolutely do not need to drop our necklines down to solicit attention or hike those hemlines up and put ourselves on some kind of visual display.  We are confident in the colors we choose to wear and the styles in which we choose to express ourselves.  We wear denim with our dresses and boots when we feel like it suits our mood.  A little modesty can go a long way!  Enjoy a little lace, a little ruffle, a red-leather jacket to the movies.  Go out and be your sassy, classy self!

Rachel Says: For more go check out Mind What You Wear: The Psychology of Fashion by Professor Karen Pine.  It’s a digital quick-read on a fresh perspective for reasons to re-vamp your wardrobe and feel like your best, beautiful self! Go grab a copy today!

6 Ways to Enrich Your Life – Starting Today!

6 Ways to Enrich Your Life – Starting Today!

 You deserve to make the most of every 24 hours you are given, so use the steps below to begin to enrich your life and create harmony.

1. Find time to relax
True quality of life begins when we have time to contemplate, slow down and prioritize our thoughts. To enrich your life today, take a bubble bath, enjoy a walk or settle in with a good book. According to Harvard Health, taking these moments to unwind enables the body to fight the effects of stress by relaxing the muscles and reducing blood pressure.  I love to relax by getting into a good story, either through a book or a movie.  With a book I can take my time, dream about the characters and set the pace of the story.  With a movie, I often reflect afterwards and always enjoy when I can really feel in-touch with the characters. This time away from the busyness of life really helps me feel more at peace in my day-to-day life.

“Relax, Recharge and Reflect. Sometimes it’s okay to do nothing.”

Izey Victoria Odias
Bath salts and essential oils are a great way to enhance the experience of relaxation

2. Mind your Stressors
Having a mind-body connection can be a powerful tool in enriching your daily life. Try writing out the times you feel most stressed so you can readily identify when stress might occur. Stress can come from multiple places, our relationships and/or home life, workplace, internal stressors (anxiety and worry) and life concerns. Identifying what brings you stress can help you determine how to handle that stress. Some stress can be controlled with simple changes. For instance, if deadlines are causing stress at work, look for ways you can set yourself up for success. Organize your desk, get a calendar, set reminders on your phone or desktop. These small actions can help reduce stress in your day-to-day tasks. If you need further help or if stressors are outside of your ability to control, then reach out to a professional, such as a counselor, therapist, a pastor or mentor.

3. Get Enough Sleep
There cannot be enough said about letting yourself rest! Sleep is the time for our bodies to recharge and repair. Most normal adults need 7-9 hours sleep, according to WebMD. However, the specific amount of time can be adjusted to fit your own needs. Ultimately, be aware if you are lacking sleep for any extended period of time. Lack of sleep can cause impaired judgment, delayed reaction time, memory issues and even a weakening of your immune system. Having a bedtime window works well. Tell yourself, “I will aim to go to bed between 10pm and 11pm tonight.” That way you have a cushion of time to allow yourself to prepare.

4. Prioritize Nutrition
Food is literally your life source and what sustains you. It is very important that you make nutrition a priority to enrich your life. Fresh fruits and vegetables are packed and loaded with essential vitamins, minerals and things like antioxidants and amino acids. (Trust me, your body needs these!) Calories are just measurements of energy, so consume wholesome calories in a rainbow of colors – leafy greens and celery, orange carrots, red tomatoes, yellow squash, purple beets, blueberries…you get the idea! Limit processed foods, high-fat foods and excess sugar. Select recipes ahead of time, then grocery shop for these specific ingredients. I love to meal plan and create a menu board on my fridge each week. It helps me stay on track with diet and my budget – double win!

5. Meditate or Pray
Being in-touch with our inner-self is just as important as our relationship with the world around us. Taking time to meditate, being mindful or spending time in prayer helps enrich your life connection to our true selves and our creator. I find that I enjoy prayer time in the evening. I like to reflect on the day and chat with God for a few moments before I go to bed. I also try to make time to reconnect in prayer on my way to work in the mornings. Often the sunrise reminds me of the magnificent beauty in life and that there is an entire force at work so much larger than myself! God designed this day for us, he put this world in motion. Each sunrise reminds me of this and sometimes it’s as simple as a “thank you” to make me feel at peace. If you can, at whatever time of day feels best to you, find a quiet spot, turn off distractions and allow yourself to just be in the moment. To read more about Meditation and Prayer, click here!

6. Own Your Environment
The immediate space around you can have a profound impact on your mood and the feeling of contentment. To enhance your environment, take 5 minutes to de-clutter or reduce visible chaos. Light a candle or turn down harsh lighting. Music is also known to have stimulating effects. So, occasionally I turn on some tunes while I’m cooking to elevate the experience of relaxing after a long day. I love soulful worship music from Lauren Daigle, Selah, Hillsong, NeedtoBreathe, David Crowder Band, For King & Country, Matt Maher, Chris Tomlin, Jars of Clay and Elevation Worship. Even though I’m still on my feet, I begin the process of unwinding this way. Scent is a great stimulant to boost your surroundings, too. An electric diffuser for essential oils is my chosen method and I find the ability to vary my scents is a fun way to incorporate the element of aromatics. Select scents for relaxation such as lavender and jasmine if you like florals, or bergamot and sandalwood if you prefer spicier aromas.

Rachel Says: Don’t hesitate to put these ideas into effect today! Simple changes can enhance the way we experience life, from reducing stress at work to creating our own home sanctuary. Be intentional with your actions – you deserve to live your best life today!

Have other ways you prefer to enhance your daily routines?  Comment below!

 

Disclaimer:

All content provided on this blog is for informational purposes only.  Any views or opinions represented in this blog are personal and belong solely to the blog owner and do not represent those of people, institutions or organizations that the owner may or may not be associated with in professional or personal capacity, unless explicitly stated.  For more details, click here.