But, do you smell that? Take a deep breath. Let it fill your being. It's change. Change is in the air, and that means it's time for reinvention.
I turned 42 a few days ago. My daughter is heading to college in less than a week. My son starts high school next week. My life is about to change a lot. That makes this the perfect time to reexamine my life and what I want from it. Who am I? (A creative being who wants to spend all of her time making things.) What do I want to be when I grow up? (Well, I don't want to grow up....and I'm not sure what I want to be, but I don't see myself staying where I am forever.) What do I want out of life? (Happiness, joy, surprise, wonder, a little bit of comfort, love.) How do I get that? (By working toward it every day.) But how?
That's the big question, isn't it? HOW?
About a month ago, I started a pretty amazing journey toward self-discovery, self-acceptance, and self-love. I was feeling down a lot. I was so overwhelmed with this feeling of inadequacy and a lack of desire to really DO anything. I felt like there was an enormous amount of negativity coming at me from every direction.....so many words and so much energy that wasn't positive. And it reflected in me. I was wearing a lot of black, not making a lot of effort to look nice, and not really caring about any of it. I wasn't knitting or really creating at all. I'd come home from work, put in my earbuds to listen to an audiobook and play Yahtzee with Buddies or puzzle games on my iPhone or iPad. It wasn't good. (Note: I'm not saying these are bad things to do. They just weren't good FOR ME.)
So, a month or so ago, I decided I needed to do something to get myself out of this funk. I went with a bit of advice from Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. In her book, she says that you need to be attractive for creativity. You can't lay around in pajamas you've had on for 3 days and hair that hasn't been washed in longer and expect the magic to come. You have to make an effort.
I remembered seeing a link to something called Dressing Your Truth on Pinterest. So, I went digging. Turns out I pinned that link more than a year ago. LOL! I read more about it and thought, "Well, this sounds like fun, so I'll just do it and see where it goes." (Please know that this is not a commercial for DYT. I'm just sharing my experience.)
I started watching the Energy Profiling videos and knew right away that I'm a Type 1. I mean, it's not even possible I could be anything else. It describes everything about me when I'm not trying to be someone I'm not: optimistic, happy, bright, bubbly, positive, expressive, outgoing, youthful. Even so, I watched the rest of the videos.... I felt a slight connection with all of the Types, but I'm so obviously a Type 1. Then I read Dressing Your Truth; Discover Your Type of Beauty by Carol Tuttle (creator of DYT). Yep! Definitely a Type 1.
Then, I ponied up and bought the DYT course. (I'm going to tell you about it, but this isn't really the important part of what's happening in my life...it just supports it.) I wasn't thrilled with the color pallet for a Type 1. Bright, sunshiny yellow is the signature color....I had literally never worn yellow in my life because I had been told it would be a terrible color for me. Tints were the name of the game (which means any pure color that has had white added to it). I always thought I preferred rich, deep, dark colors. Then I started cleaning out my closet. Ruthlessly.
Here's the before:
Really awful, right? So many clothes, many which weren't being worn ever. What a mess. (Also, yes, I realize I'm blessed with a giant walk-in closet. In this picture, you are seeing a bit less than half of it. Hubby uses the other half.)
Here are the after pics:
Pretty amazing, right? (I need to recover my chair with a Type 1 fabric...) And there is NO BLACK. (Items that look black in the picture are actually either navy blue or dark chocolate brown.)
Anyway, I was really really ruthless. I took out 3 trash bags full of clothes for Goodwill, along with several pairs of shoes. I will admit that I kept a laundry basket of clothes I wasn't quite ready to part with yet...but it's now been a couple of weeks, and I don't miss those clothes at all. They will likely be on their way out of the house soon. (If you've done DYT and you are a Type 4 who wears a 14/16 top and 18/20 bottom, I probably have some great black stuff for you.)
After cleaning out my closet, I went shopping. End of season clearance is the bomb. I had so much fun!! I don't remember ever having this much fun shopping for clothes! I was able to quickly pick things that followed the Type 1 guidelines. And guess what! They all looked great on me!! I even tried on YELLOW and LOVED IT!!!
Here's the really amazing thing: DYT has a "5 compliment guarantee." They promise that you will receive at least 5 compliments in the first 30 days of dressing your truth. I had that many on the first day. Seriously. And even the way complete strangers responded to me changed (possibly because my way of responding to them changed). I don't even know how to describe how wonderful it was/is. I smile at people, and they smile back. I feel like before, I would smile but no one would respond, and I was just invisible. But maybe it's hard not to smile back at someone who is wearing a bright, sunshiny yellow blouse and turquoise jewelry. :)
So, while changing the way I dress and present myself to the world physically was a wonderful and much-needed step in my life, it was just the tip of the iceberg. I've been immersing myself in the Living Your Truth way of living. I'm currently trying to figure out my secondary Energy Type. I thought it was Type 4, but I'm not so sure.... But, I'm also learning more about my dominant Type 1 Energy. I'm learning that so much of what I've seen as my weaknesses are really my strengths. Yes, I'm optimistic and maybe a little naively so, but I bring hope and joy. Yes, I'm chatty and bubbly, but I bring people together and try to include everyone. I look in the mirror now and I see beauty and light and joy, not flaws that I used to see. I literally look in the mirror and see hearts and stars and circles in my features and think, "Wow! I am beautiful!" It's a really nice change.
My husband (in classic Type 2 fashion) didn't really say anything until I said, "So, you may have noticed that I've been dressing differently." Then he opened up and said that yes, he'd noticed and that he'd also noticed that I seem more present than I have in a while. I told him I was tired of looking and feeling like a schlump. He said, "Well, first, you never looked like a schlump." Bless his heart. I think that's what we call unconditional love. Why don't we love ourselves unconditionally? Why is that so hard?? I believe that by living my truth, I'm finally figuring out how to give myself some of that good stuff!
That's probably the last time you'll hear me rave about DYT. Henceforth, you get to witness my reinvention. Don't worry, there will still be knitting and sewing....but I might add some other things as inspiration strikes. I'm becoming more confident every day. Stay tuned!!!