In a fashion-conscious society, the clothes that we wear often represent the way we portray our inner selves to the world. It can show aspects of our personality in a number of ways through creativity but it can even show a person’s particular mindset.
When someone decides to dress for success you would imagine a wardrobe full of outfits for every occasion – ready to impress at any opportunity and to create an impact. After all, we’re told appearances matter when it comes to success but does this actually mean we need a plethora of outfits?
More and more successful people are owning up to creating minimal wardrobes – opting to wear the same outfit every day. While this may seem to negate the idea of ‘dress for success’ there are very valid reasons why successful people opt to choose this way of dressing.
1. It Saves You Time
The most obvious reason is that wearing the same outfit every day means less time wasted. Our morning routines can reflect how successful we are in the rest of our day and we often don’t realise how much time is taken up with unnecessary options when it comes to choosing the clothes we wear. By eliminating the need to pick and choose, successful people create more time by having a quicker and more efficient morning routine that transcends into the rest of their day and adds to their success mindset.
2. Safe In The Knowledge That You Have That One Successful Outfit
When we have what seems like an infinite amount of options of what to wear, not only does it take up time deciding on an outfit but it creates a situation where we have many items of clothing that don’t always mix and match. Having many clothes may give the illusion of having loads of different options but in reality we probably only end up wearing the same round of clothes each time. By having a small amount of high-quality versatile items we may be shrinking our options, but we will always have a go-to, high-quality outfit that will do the job every time.
3. It Creates Less Stress
Even when we’ve made that important decision on what to wear, we can start to question our choice throughout the day. You can start to wonder if you wear the right shoes, if you’re too overdressed or underdressed. When these doubts enter your mind you can start to stress more about the day ahead and may trigger unwanted anxiety. When you have one particular outfit that gives you confidence and suits a wide range of situations, you eliminate that worry and your energy is focused on the successes of the day.
4. Eliminates Decisions
We often have a multitude of decisions to make in just one day. Whether important or fleeting, these decisions can mean the difference between success and less success. Being bogged down with decisions can sometimes do damage to our mindset – never underestimate the power of eliminating one unnecessary decision from your daily routine. Any chance to free up space in the mind will help towards focusing on more important tasks.
Barak Obama is rarely seen moving away from his uniform blue or grey suits and there’s a very particular reason for this.
“You’ll see I wear only grey or blue suits. I’m trying to pare down decisions. I don’t want to make decisions about what I’m eating or wearing. Because I have too many other decisions to make.”
In other words, having one less decision to worry about will help towards making better and more well thought-out decisions later.
5. Less Maintenance and Organisation
Having a smaller wardrobe means less energy maintaining and organising it. Successful people like to put their energy into important tasks and having a large variety of clothes means more time doing tasks such as washing, drying and ironing. Not only that but the clothes take up valuable space. Our possessions and the amount we have can say a lot about us, with clutter and too much stuff showing a disorganised mind. Freeing up storage space will not only lead to less need for organisation time but also gives you a sense of space both literally in your wardrobe and in your mind.
6. It Forces You To Change Your Relationship With Clothes
The actress Drew Barrymore talked about how she decided to try and change her relationship with clothes as she gets older. In a world where clothes are a huge fashion statement and material consumption is at an all-time high, many people are changing the way clothes rule their lives. Barrymore says:
“For starters, I’m almost 40, and the 20s clothes don’t make sense anymore. And, after two babies, the 30s clothes don’t fit anymore. I am at a clothing crossroads, and it’s a painful one at times.”
By limiting her wardrobe Barrymore says she became “sane and happy” and at peace with the notion of getting dressed in the morning no longer being a difficult feat full of deliberating decisions.
7. Eliminate The Unnecessary Expense
As mentioned in the last point, material consumption is extremely high with our society’s ‘buy and throw-away’ attitude and we end up with a lot of unnecessary items. This is also true for our wardrobes – how many items of clothing have you never worn or are waiting for that perfect occasion that never comes?
We often delude ourselves that the items hanging in the closet are somehow crucial but we often over-spend on clothes that we don’t really need. By throwing out these items and keeping our clothes collection minimal, we train the mind into realising we don’t need as much as we think. Our need to impulse buy is greatly limited and we become more mindful of the amount of ‘things’ we actually need.
So perhaps it’s time to try the minimal wardrobe technique. Take a leaf out of the book of those people who have made the choice to free themselves from one less daily decision and still dress for success with that one single, dependable and successful outfit.