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[ARTICLE BY S. ALI]
Now here’s something novel, the fear of not doing something just because you’re afraid. Sound familiar? Well it should because that’s the exact reason why most people don’t do certain things, including simply looking better. I’ve heard this ridiculous argument given, believe it or not, more than once: “I don’t like spending all that time and money on clothes because it makes me feel like a woman.” Or a metrosexual. Or pansy. Or unmanly man. I can speak from firsthand experience, and many of our readers and those who subscribe to style and fashion and taking pride in dressing themselves are actually some of the most “manly” men you’ll meet. We own guns, motorcycles, are into to home improvement, and are great providers to our families. And they (we) like to spend more than 60 seconds deciding how we will present ourselves to the world that day.
I tell the other brothers all the time, especially those who dress without thought (I won’t say badly because this is subjective), that it takes the same amount of time to dress well as it takes you to dress the way you currently do (badly, in a subjective sort of way). This is because the actual thought is absent. Thought of the message their attire sends to everyone they meet, and the message they send to themselves. Somewhere along with the intention to look extra manly, we now only look poorly dressed for most occasions and appear as if we have an actual disregard for our own appearance. And again, unfortunately, this thought process came from not wanting it to look like they spent too much time and/or money on their wardrobe. Since when did looking like you took effort to dress yourself become a bad a thing? It shows pride and excellence, and might just show attention to detail in other areas. I believe that when it becomes all-consuming and you now no longer are concerned with where you are actually going versus how you look, then it’s probably at the initial fear level, and rightly so. But most people will never ever get to that point. Let’s just start with matching shoes and belts before we jump to conclusions! I’m talking about just balancing the scales slightly, not tipping them.
I also don’t know if those at whom this post is directed will ever even get a chance to see it. I’m going to finish it anyway because we all have that one friend who secretly admires the way you dress but hasn’t worked up the nerve to ask you to help him out. Go easy on him and don’t make it look to hard, and he will eventually ask. I promise. I just had one of my dear friends intimate that he was ready to start dressing in a more “mature” manner. I simply smiled, didn’t make too much of a big deal about it (even though I was jumping up and down on the inside) and said nonchalantly, “Let me know when.” Not making a big deal about it will ensure your friend will actually go through with it and not back out at the last moment after he mentions what he’s about to do to his badly dressed “other” friends.
This line of thinking is actually the predecessor to taking risks, because first you must want to look better. Once you make a decision to no longer be peer pressured into looking bad, you have resources here, and probably at least one friend who dresses pretty well. Use that person because they will probably be honored and be happy to help. You will feel better about everything, and most importantly yourself. Don’t be shamed into looking worse to appease those around you whose self-image hasn’t caught up yet. Be the best you can be unabashedly and proudly.
Do it big, with passion and with style.