Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Just Say No to the Casualization of America

The casualization of America is gross. Seriously. The public places of America are not your living room. For the benefit of the rest of your fellow humans, please take off the yoga pants and pajamas and wear real clothes. Once a year or so I feel this blog is important to remind people that you'll like yourself more if you look cute. Trust me. I'm an expert.

I love cute clothes. And shoes. God I love shoes. I think dressing well says a lot about who you are, and you'll never (okay VERY rarely) catch me in public without real clothes. Even (especially) when I'm traveling. Sweatpants are for working out or lying on the couch clearing out the DVR. I'll wear them walking my dogs (in the dark early in the morning). But to the store? To the movies? To dinner? Never, never, never. Even when I came home from a 3-week hospital stay I asked my husband to bring me jeans and a t-shirt. Two surgeries and a blood clot? Not reasons to look like a degenerate in public. 
A rare occurrence: wearing running clothes to breakfast a few weeks ago.
 I was stressed about it the whole time.
This morning I was getting tea at the coffee shop next door to my office. I was wearing my mid-weight pink pea coat (adorbs), tights and this season's cutest booties. A stranger grabbed my arm and told me she loved my shoes. After a 2-3 minute conversation about shoes she said, "Girl you're working it today. You inspire me." Sure...it's an outfit. But it's what the outfit says about who you are and how you feel about yourself that makes others pay attention. And maybe even inspires them to want to feel better about themselves.
My fav booties this season.
I've gotten to a point in my life where I comment enough about attire that it's become a thing. I recently ran into a friend while getting my hair done. She was wearing her work clothes and flip flops. I honestly didn't even notice the flip flops; I was just glad to see her. She was mortified and posted something on Facebook about how she couldn't believe she ran into me looking like that. I felt badly because I didn't want her to think I really cared, and she looked lovely. But on the other hand? I like that I'm making people think about how they present themselves. We all should be. What Not to Wear was a hit television show for a decade for a reason. How you look matters. It matters in how others see you, but more importantly it matters in how you see yourself. I'm 100% sure nobody wears pajamas in public and thinks, "Wow I feel amazing in this outfit". It doesn't mean wearing a ball gown to Kroger, but if you look good, you'll feel good too. (As an aside I'm not opposed to wearing a ball gown to Kroger...or anywhere for that matter). I won't spend any time railing on capri pants (which I honestly hate so much) because I know so many people wear them. See...I can restrain myself on occasion.

I'll admit it - I put nearly as much time planning an outfit for a race as I do actually training for it.  It's my goal to be the best dressed runner at a race, and I'd say most of the time I reach that goal. It also helps me actually run better. I swear! Wearing something cute motivates me to work out. If you look good and feel good about yourself, I guarantee you'll be more motivated. 

At a 5k earlier this year. Running skirt, cute top, compression socks. Boom.
Life is too short to not feel amazing all the time. I love to get home from work and put on WVU sweatpants and a long-sleeved t-shirt. Being comfortable is awesome. But if I'm commanding a room during a legislative committee hearing or working toward my PR at a race, it's about looking and feeling the best that I can. It boosts confidence, and I am sure helps you get closer to whatever goals you want to accomplish. When in doubt, wear the skirt. And the cute shoes.  

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