For many millennia we have been taught to Dress for Success? If you put on the right clothes you can convince people you are something you want them to believe. From Euripides in Ancient Greek times through to Mozart and modern cinema, many writers have made a regular joke in their story lines about being able to change persona with your clothes. The servant becomes the master, the woman becomes a man. Change their clothes and everyone is fooled.
This tradition continues today. Why has it lasted so long? Because up until recently it has always worked! People can be fooled. For the one who goes to a job interview beautifully presented and filled with confidence, the first impression – which is very powerful – is that they are highly professional, reliable and know what they’re talking about. If they are able to “wing it” during the interview and talk themselves up they are much more likely to get the job over the quiet one who really has the expertise but can’t dress or sell themselves as well.
However, times are changing and we are all starting to see through this pretence. Being who you truly are is becoming more important and presents a more authentic version of you to the world.
Steve Jobs was a milestone in this regard. Never again will people look at a guy in a turtle neck, jeans and sneakers and assume he is ordinary, isn’t very competitive or has no personal power.
I saw this during the few years I sold real estate too. I learnt very quickly that the ones who had the capacity to buy the entire block of apartments were often the quiet relaxed ones with a stubble, check shirt and faded jeans driving a ute. The ones who showed up in the latest BMW, were a bit too loud or confident, dressed in a suit and tie were usually “trying” to give the impression of being successful and had no money to put where their mouth was.
The Human Species is evolving and the sixth sense is developing in every one of us. We are starting to get a “feel” for what lies beneath. We can read between the lines and hear beneath the words spoken.
What does that mean? Two things:
1) Honesty is IN
If you want to be seen as authentic you must find a way to express that honestly in your clothing. Let’s get you matched up well to the company for a start.
Before you go for that job interview take a really good look at that company and what it represents. Google a bit and see what you can find out about how they treat their suppliers and their staff. Make sure they treat them the same way they advertise they treat their customers – this is the sign of a higher integrity business.
If that’s looking good, see if you feel you really fit into the vibe of the staff. Don’t just go for the job because it will pay the bills. If you already naturally dress the way the rest of the staff dress and match the company values, you could be on to a winner.
Dressing to work here will be effortless and you can fully focus on your work rather than your appearance.
2) Look deeper than skin deep
Want to make wiser decisions about others yourself? Look deeper.
Get into the habit of losing your judgement about clothes. Look further into each person to discover who they are and what they are about. Don’t assume a beautiful suit and dazzling smile will show you who you can trust and rely upon. They might be easy on the eye but if the inside does not match, that smile will eventually lead you down the wrong path.
Be attentive when you talk to people. Look them in the eye and see the emotions, eye movements, the twitches and flinches as conversation progresses. Look at the body language and the vibe which, as you practice observing more, you’ll be able to read better.
Working this way has made a massive difference in how I see others. There have been times I’ve got the wisest, most profound message I needed to hear from sitting in the gutter with a homeless person than I have from a bling-laden executive.
I can see who I can trust and I have compassion for those who do not trust themselves.
As we progress through the years from here forward the search for truth will extend into all areas of life. I expect it will not be long before our wardrobe will not have that many different styles in it. Just the stuff we love to wear.
You will no longer need outfits for work, weekend, the theatre, Saturday morning football, funerals or meeting the Queen. Others will see you as you are and will not even notice the clothes.
Afraid to show who you are?
Understand, you can continue to “dress for success” but it will feel more and more fake as time goes on, plus more people will see through it and find you lacking in integrity.
It takes courage to look inside and be honest about who you are. Expressing that cannot be immediately done in all countries around the world, of course. As you learn to accept yourself though, you’ll find your energy building. You won’t be so exhausted all the time.
A joy of life fills each day and, Law of Attraction wise when that happens, every part of life will start to move to your benefit.
Before you go for a job interview, pitch a proposal or make a sales call, search deep inside and be proud of the skills you have, the way you communicate, your problem solving tactics and how much you can offer these people you are meeting. When you focus on these parts of you, so will they and the clothes will take a second priority.
Need help building integrity into your sales calls, pitch or presentation? Work with me for maximum results.