You should always be yourself- that’s what we’re told, right? But when you work in a relatively formal profession but have a bold fashion sense like me, sometimes it feels like ‘being yourself’ can come across unprofessional.
As a journalist, I always find myself putting much more thought than I should into what I wear. I’d describe my style as often trendy, sometimes bold, and never conservative. Wearing all black (unless it’s something really showstopping, but that’s another story) is just not me.
This week I had a meeting about a ‘serious’ work opportunity, which left me pondering my usual dilemma. And after much debating, I decided to be myself. I’m so glad I did.
As I was getting the tram into town for my meeting, not one, not two but three separate people stopped to tell me how cool I looked. I have to admit I was feeling myself. I was wearing all my favourite things: animal print, tangerine orange, and some statement ankle boots.
Lots of women (myself included) feel on top of life when their underwear matches, but I really feel like I have my shit together when my outfit coordinates beautifully. For some people, I know this orange ensemble would be too much but for me more is more!
For this look I’ve taken inspiration from several Girl Bosses. My hair is styled after the ultimate goddess that is Bridget Bardot, I’ve gone Chanel-inspired with my layered pearl and chain necklace, and my ever so pretty yet impractically tiny designer bag would definitely get the Carrie Bradshaw seal of approval.
While I was initially nervous to turn up to my meeting in full Alice attire, I’m confident I smashed it. I walked in as myself, and therefore I was able to fully portray my passion for my work. In such a competitive industry confidence is key, and wearing my favourite colour certainly gave me a boost.
Many of the most stylish women I’ve met are total career girls. From lawyers, to teachers, to working in the STEM industries, these ladies understand that you should never feel obliged to ‘look’ a certain way to chase your dreams. Just as our jobs don’t define us, our style doesn’t impact our ability to do our jobs.
From my working life so far, I’ve been surprised that smart-casual reigns king. Most industries these days are cottoning on to the fact that feeling comfortable is much more important for productivity than being constrained by the conventions of formal dressing.
I’m going to stop fretting about what people think of me and the way I dress in a professional setting. Being a Girl Boss comes from your inner driving force, not from the clothes you wear. I’m going to be myself, and you should too.
What makes you feel confident? I’d love to read about it in the comments below.