Do you have a preference in your life for things to remain more stable or to have more variety and difference?
What’s interesting, is that this may influence your wardrobe choices as well as other choices in your life.
Discover How Your Personality Type May Influence Your Style and Need for Either Stability or Variety in this Video
The 6 Human Needs and Your Style
According to Tony Robbins, humans all have 6 basic human needs – these are:
- Certainty – safety, stability, and predictability – security in jobs, and life.
- Variety – uncertainty, change, excitement, new stimuli
- Significance – feeling valued, important and special, our lives to have meaning.
- Connection – affiliation and relationships, being part of a community
- Growth – expanding and improving, continued education, emotional, spiritual, physical financial and intellectual personal growth
- Contribution – having an impact, helping, serving, and supporting someone other than ourselves or something bigger than ourselves in a meaningful way
With an understanding of these six human needs, we order them differently, based on our personality and life, but they are worth thinking about with regards to your style. They can all impact your style, but let’s just focus on Certainty and Variety – these two seemingly opposing human needs.
Do You Prefer to Control vs Go with the Flow with Regards to Your Style?
For Jill, who prefers to control and have more stability in her style, she’ll happily plan outfits ahead of time (sometimes even months ahead for big events). Whilst people more like me (INTJ – or Intuitive types ) may find that they need more variety as they prefer to dress with their moods (and moods can change). I know that sometimes when I plan an outfit even the night before, I wake up in the morning and am no longer “feeling” that outfit so have to figure out a different outfit to wear for that day.
For those of you who have a personality more similar to Jill’s (ESFJ, or any SJ – Sensing and Judging types) and as she says, they tend to prefer stability in their lives whilst SP (Sensing and Perceiving) may want much more variety in their lives. In fact, the SP types have brain patterning (according to Type and Brain researcher Dario Nardi) which he describes as the “tennis hop” pattern, where they are ready to go with the flow, whatever that direction may be and their style is often one that is ‘prepared’ for different circumstances, in a way that other types may never think about.
Whilst the NP types (intuitive and perceiving) have a “Christmas Tree” brain patterning like the lights of a Christmas tree that are twinkling and so they see possibilities everywhere in their clothes and style and often can become overwhelmed easily, or find it almost impossible to let go of clothes (as there are still many possibilities they see and potential for each item), yet often the most stylish of them start to impose their own guidelines and criteria, some structure around their style to take some of that overwhelm away. In fact, Steve Jobs is an example of an NP type who wore a self-imposed “uniform” daily, and we see this as a way for him to remove one set of decisions as otherwise the endless possibilities of what to wear may have meant he’d never get on with the rest of his day. It allowed him to use his creative brain in a different space.
When Jill is feeling certain and stable with her outfit and style, she then can focus on what is happening around her, and she can forget her outfit. Though she says there is an element of pure joy in putting outfits together, curating her outfit, and having stability and control over what’s in her wardrobe and how every outfit goes together.
For Jill, leopard print is a signature print and provides stability for her, it’s in every outfit she wears.
For me, leopard print is a print I only occasionally wear and so provides a feeling of variety and difference in my wardrobe and outfit.
If you have a greater need for variety and uncertainty, then you are more likely to want a wider variety of styles of clothing in your wardrobe, and you may not be able to plan ahead in the same way Jill can.
Certainty and Variety and Your Life
One of the things I’ve noticed with myself and my clients when life is full of instability and uncertainty, you are more likely to hold onto a style or have a more “uniformed” approach to your style. It feels safer, and when you feel that you have no control over anything else in your life, then feeling like you have some control over your outfits can give you a nice hit of feel-good hormones (serotonin, dopamine), that you have control over something in your life.
Now if you are going through a period of great stability in your life, it can become boring, and this is when you may start craving variety of some sort. For some of us, this results in wanting a big change in our wardrobe or look, or different kinds of outfits every day. We need to shake things up, do something different, may decide to change our hair in a more radical way, or buy clothes that are nothing like what we currently own in our wardrobes.
Do You Hold Onto Everything?
If you have a possibilities brain, you may find it almost impossible to let go of clothes, and have a large and cluttered wardrobe that may feel overwhelming at times.I have found that some NP types find it very hard to let go, so creating your own criteria that allow you to let go of clothing that no longer serves you or your lifestyle is worth figuring out. Whether it’s finding a charity that you really feel is worthy of your clothing, or understanding that those clothes that no longer fit you (and are unlikely to fit you again in the near future) are worth letting go of. One strategy I use with my clients like this who feel that it’s almost impossible to let go of items that are too small, is that we pack them away, then write a Used By date on the bag or box, and then if they have not been seeking out those clothes before that used-by date – that once that date passes, they let go of the bag of clothes, don’t open and look at them again (that gets the emotions and possibilities going again making it harder to let go), just like you’d let go of out of date food without looking back.
Your Personality Type Doesn’t Tell You What to Wear
As much as your type will influence how you approach your style, it doesn’t tell you what you would actually wear specifically. This is something that is specific to you. And if you’re interested in understanding how to take your style essence, your approach to style, and figuring out how to turn it into something concrete – the actual clothing you wear each day, this is what you’ll get in our Your Type of Style program, a program we only open once a year. Find out more about it here.