“What you wear can influence your thinking and negotiating skills, and even hormone levels and heart rate” – Matthew Hutson
We all know that the way we dress speaks a lot about our personality, but as the years pass, numerous scientific studies have shown that what we wear also affects the way we think and behave. Even though these researches are mainly small, due to a great number of them, the first results mostly show that we actually feel different while wearing different types of clothes.
Some clothes make us feel more confident and more creative, other types of clothes makes us feel physically stronger and finally, a certain type of clothing makes people consider us more intelligent, unique and/or rebellious.Advertising
Clothing affects your self-confidence
According to a paper from Social Psychological and Personality Science, a certain number of subjects were instructed to wear casual clothing and formal clothing before taking intellectual tests. Those wearing formal clothing performed much better in the given tasks, especially when it comes to creative and organizational tasks, which confirmed higher creativity capabilities. So, next time you are facing a demanding task at work, make sure that you dress up, as it will make you feel more confident and focused.
Communication and clothing
Another important aspect of your character that it is affected by clothing is communication. In a study reported by the Journal of Experimental Psychology, subjects were required to wear formal and informal clothing in negotiation meetings. Those who wore business suits performed much better, as they assorted dominance over the person with whom they were negotiating.
On the other hand, those wearing informal clothes, sweatpants to be precise, had much lower testosterone levels and had lower scores when it came to persuasion skills. So, next time you are negotiating for a business deal, make sure that you suit up.Advertising
Attention and clothing
An interesting research published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology back in 2012, showed a higher level of concentration with people who were told that they are wearing a doctor’s white coat. The study participants wore a painter’s smock, whereas others wore doctor’s coats. The ones dressed in doctor’s coats displayed incredibly higher results in attention demanding tasks. So, next time you are lacking focus, simply put on a doctor’s coat and immerse yourself in that concentration demanding task.
Effects of color on physical performance
The color of your clothes is not something you would expect to be affecting your physical or mental performance, however, two different researches showcase the effects of color on people’s physical and mental performance. The first study was published by the Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology where the sportsmen were dressed in red and blue sport shirts. Those wearing red performed much better when it came to lifting weights before combat sparring.
Another important effect of the color red was that the heart rate of the participants wearing it was higher during the whole training process. Even though those wearing red sport shirts were more aggressive, it did not bring them more victories during combat practice.Advertising
Clothing and breaking the social norms
This study is particularly interesting, as it is dedicated to those who decided to break the rules of what they are expected to wear. We are all familiar with different social norms and respective dress codes followed by people in certain institutions. For example, when we think of a stock broker, we imagine a man wearing a suit; when we think of a surgeon, we imagine a man in scrubs, etc. However, according to several experiments published in the Journal of Consumer Research, breaking the expected dress code slightly can improve how you are perceived by the crowd.
According to the article, a man attending a black-tie affair, courageously decided to show up with a red tie. The results were astonishing, as people viewed this individual as someone who has a higher status and who is more capable and successful in all aspects of life. He was perceived as someone who is very confident and breaking the dress code brought about positive opinions. Another very interesting scenario was a professor in red Converse sneakers, who captivated the audience more easily as they valued his uniqueness.
The later interviewed audience revealed that the man was considered more intelligent and much more competent throughout the lecture. These examples clearly show that it’s possible to show your rebellious character by going against the established rules a little bit. But don’t overdo it, as it can seriously backfire.Advertising
Even though our clothing style greatly affects the way we behave and think, the smell is equally important. Some clothing items are easy to deal with, whereas others can be quite difficult to clean. The part of our wardrobe that causes the most problems are the shoes, but there are numerous creative ways to reduce the odor they give off. As published in an article on livescience, scents greatly affect the way we think and behave, so keep that in mind when dressing for a certain occasion. It’s equally important that you look good and that your clothes smell nice.
The aforementioned studies show how important dressing actually is. When you are getting ready for the next business meeting, keep in mind that your clothes actually say much more about you than you might think.
Last Updated on January 21, 2020
The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want
Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.
Why You Need a Vision
Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.
How to Create Your Life Vision
Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.
What Do You Want?
The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.
It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.
Some tips to guide you:
- Remember to ask why you want certain things
- Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
- Give yourself permission to dream.
- Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
- Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.
Some questions to start your exploration:
- What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
- What would you like to have more of in your life?
- Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
- What are your secret passions and dreams?
- What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
- What do you want your relationships to be like?
- What qualities would you like to develop?
- What are your values? What issues do you care about?
- What are your talents? What’s special about you?
- What would you most like to accomplish?
- What would legacy would you like to leave behind?
It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.
What Would Your Best Life Look Like?
Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.
A few prompts to get you started:
- What will you have accomplished already?
- How will you feel about yourself?
- What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
- What does your ideal day look like?
- Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
- What would you be doing?
- Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
- How are you dressed?
- What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
- What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
- Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.
It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next step. Give yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.
It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.
- What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
- What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
- What would you have needed to learn along the way?
- What important actions would you have had to take?
- What beliefs would you have needed to change?
- What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
- What type of support would you have had to enlist?
- How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
- What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?
Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.
It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.
Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com