Sunday, July 29, 2012

How Clothing Shapes our Attitudes

I like to write about this topic periodically, because in a nutshell, this is why I dress up. If it didn't matter how I dressed, why would I bother writing this blog or putting all the effort into my wardrobe that I do?

The reality is that (at least in my experience) the relationship between me and my clothes tends to inform my attitude. If I feel well-dressed, I feel comfortable and ready to take on the world. If I feel that I am under-dressed or look like a mess, I would much rather not leave the house, and will be likely inclined to be unproductive to boot.

This is why I keep going on about how dressing up is so awesome. When you take care and effort to put together an outfit, it isn't necessity that informs your decision, but rather your choice builds your journey. The attitude of needing an excuse to dress up is completely backwards. By dressing up, you create a reality in which anything is possible and in which beauty and harmony flow. Such a backdrop is a great consolation in our broken and crazy world.

As it turns out, I'm not the only person who feels like this. Interestingly enough, there is a movement in Africa (click here to read about the Sapeur movement) where people dress up in ways that one might not expect. By placing the outward appearance above necessities in life, many would presume such people are fools. However, it is quite the contrary: by creating an elevated state of being, they improve their quality of living in ways that simple utilitarian necessities cannot. (Although, I might encourage a bit more balance, budget-wise.)

I'm not going to suggest that clothing should be completely idolized, but when we use it as more than a lazy excuse against nakedness, there is much potential to be had. The realm of imagination and glorious happiness await those of us who refuse to believe that the goal in life is to wear the most dressed down piece of utilitarian cloth.

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