Who are you and how do you want to be perceived?
This is something I work through with my Style clients to discover who they are and how we can translate their personality into an authentic expression through their clothing and grooming.
If you’ve thought about this topic before and have wondered how you are perceived, here is a fun game to play with a bunch of friends.
- Get some large pieces of paper – A3 or larger (Flip chart paper is great) and some tape.
- Tear off enough pieces of paper for each person to have one. Stick the paper to each others backs like a cape on their shoulders.
- Grab a felt tip pen each.
There are two things you can do here, you may want to do both, using 2 pieces of paper each.
Firstly, you can answer the question for each:
“Based on what you’re wearing right now, and if I didn’t know you, what would I think about who you are as a person and your personality”.
Secondly, you can answer this question for each person:
“Based on my knowledge of you and who you are, what are 1-3 words I’d use to describe your personality (please find the positive for each person)”.
Each write the answer to the question you are working with on each other’s paper cape. Once everyone has written their answers, you can take off your cape and discover:
1. How you’re perceived based on your appearance
2. How you’re perceived based on the personality traits you display to your friends.
Some words may surprise you, others will be what you expected (most likely).
You can then consider how you want to be perceived by both those who do know you as well as those who don’t. Choose a few of these words that really resonate with you and grab some magazines (or get online and create a new Pinterest board or Polyvore set) and start curating pictures that express those words, to you.
If you’ve had some surprise words that you’re not keen on, you may want to consider what the messages are that you’re currently expressing through your clothing and grooming that may not be accurate and how you can dress differently to express who you really are.
Doing this exercise from taking the words and then expressing them in a visual way, will help you to start thinking about how you dress for your personality and the image you want to portray to the world.
Take your words home, maybe make a Wordle (like I have above) and print them out and stick them on a wall. Consider them over time. You may find that 2-3 of them really start to resonate with you and you can whittle down your list to a smaller number which represent your authentic self and style statement.