Once upon a time, not very long ago, my take on dressing up was very involved. It meant spending more time getting ready for the day than I usually did. When I worked my office job, I spent about an hour in the mornings getting myself together for the work day. In comparison, dressing up for me "required" doing my hair (or getting it done professionally), putting on more makeup than usual, and wearing a dress with heels.
These days, my version of dressing up is much less involved. Because it's relative, I don't have to spend much effort to go above and beyond my at-home norm.
I have the luxury of being at home for the better part of my day. I watch my son and I work while not having to worry about putting forth a professional persona. My daily look involves barely brushed hair, little to no makeup, and leggings. Ooh, and deodorant! Because I'm worth it. And so is my marriage...!
My focus during the day is to get stuff done. Thanks to Super Why, my toddler is able to recognize most letters and even a few words, so we've been chatting more about numbers, shapes & colors. I've been scheming to get my business out there more. And I've been doing some holiday preparations, as time permits.
Looking picture perfect not only isn't critical for me - sometimes it can be a downright distraction. If I rub my eyeliner decorated eyes when I'm tired, I look like I recently lost a fist fight. Then I become determined to clean it up. When I wear nice clothes, if a tiny person chucks messy food my way, then I spend time finding the stain remover and searching for a new, unadulterated shirt. If I start off looking casual, it's must easier to roll with these incidents.
The other day, I did spend more time getting ready after I woke up. I went to my first BizNet meeting, which is a networking group. I wanted to present myself as a professional, so I wore clothes that required ironing. BIG change from my daily norm! I felt put together and ventured out for the morning.
My first observation was that the roads are a lot busier around 7 than they are around 10, which is when we typically head out for errands. I was anticipating some traffic, though came across an accident on my 2 mile drive to the meeting point. I arrived 15 minutes later than i had planned. I had forgotten that feeling of battling traffic and felt bad for the stress that my husband must feel twice a day.
Once I got settled into the meeting, I didn't focus much on my super flat, crisp clothes. I was too busy learning about the other people at this meeting to think about my outfit. My clothing choice did not give me any super powers, although people may have viewed me as a professional. This BizNet group was very relaxed and kind, so they might have treated me the same even if I was in my pajamas.
After I left the meeting, I called my husband to let him know that I was heading home. He broke the news to me that our son had been sick a few times that morning. I went into action mode. My additional networking plans for the day took a backseat. I made a doctor's appointment for him and, while there, learned that he had an ear infection, which can impact your balance and make you feel dizzy and nauseated.
My outfit was the farthest thing from my mind as I focused on making sure my son drank Pedialyte and ate saltine crackers. I drove around while he napped in his car seat, hoping that would ensure he was not too dizzy. Our afternoon was filled with cuddles and books.
It makes me wonder: If you have a job where you're not customer-facing, how important is what you're wearing? If you're getting the important things accomplished and you are dressed in some fashion, should it matter whether you're in sweatpants or a three piece suit?
What is your optimal work outfit? How would it make you be more productive?