Last week, the series began by demonstrating where in our lives a person’s signature style is revealed (click here to read) and this week, I’d like to begin by sharing ideas on what to do to discover exactly what your signature style is. So many of you last week mentioned, that while you’d love to have a signature style, you don’t know how to go about nailing it down. So, with that in mind, here are six ways to find it on your own. The key however, is to always be conscious of your initial reaction to something and always be honest with yourself.
ReadAn undying love for the written word is a must and something that a stylish woman should continually be engaged in on a daily basis. Whether it is reading the daily newspaper’s opinion pages, devouring a how-to book or reading a recently released best-seller, you expose yourself to an array of ideas that had you never cracked a book, you might have been oblivious to. Ignorance is not bliss when it comes to creating your signature style. After all, how can you know what you truly love if you don’t provide yourself with options to choose from?
TravelAs Mark Twain reminds us, “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness . . .” and in aiding each of us along our journey to create our own signature style, the opportunity to travel opens our eyes to the myriad of ways people live their lives. I have always found that in traveling, I am reassured that there are endless ways to lead a content life and am strengthened upon returning home because of my new-found knowledge. Upon arriving home, ask yourself, what about their culture did I respond positively to? If something resonated with you, why not incorporate it some way in your life? Love having tea time similar to that of the Queen? Why not allow yourself the time in mid-afternoon to sit down with a hot pot of tea and a small treat to help get through the rest of the day?
SocializeAccepting invitations to attend new events and experience new people all the while listening to their ideas is certain to fine-tune what you truly enjoy, what type of lifestyle you genuinely feel comfortable living and the potential to discover a concept you had never considered before. My first yoga class, well, actually my second after a span of over ten years, was far more enlightening and engaging than I ever imagined. Maybe I was finally at a point in my life where I could get out of my own way, or maybe this particular instructor spoke a language I meshed with, either way, until you go, you’ll never know.
Keep An Open MindA way to ensure you continue to be invited to more social gatherings, especially the one’s you enjoy, is to always keep an open-mind. After all, nobody wants a stick-in the mud who can’t engage in a little healthy debate. Now this doesn’t mean that you can’t have your opinions, but by respecting other’s opinions, different concepts that are presenting in an art exhibit or a play you may see, you are doing yourself a tremendous favor. The moment you open your mind, letting go of staunchly kept assumptions and beliefs, you allow the opportunity for your curiosity to be piqued, your mind and thinking to be challenged and, even better, an occasion for growth. How it works is, even if you don’t agree with the idea that was presented, at least you’ve digested it, at least you’ve contemplated it. And as they say, the best way to win a debate is to know both sides. The same can be said for discovering your signature style, once you know what your options are, you can make the choice that fits you the best.
Self-ReflectionOut of all the suggestions mentioned above on how to pinpoint and create your signature style, allowing a few minutes for self-reflection is the simplest and most likely, the most productive. Take a moment to settle your mind and reflect on what makes you unique. What comes easily to you that many people struggle with or don’t even attempt? Can you carry off a pixie haircut with the pizzazz of Twiggy? Do you have a knack for sketching and illustrating? Can you quickly discern which colors and textures work well together? What do people compliment you on regularly? By considering this question, you may begin to realize you already do have the beginnings of your very own signature style and can now begin to build upon it.
Use Your SensesThe tips suggested above to help you decide what your signature style should be, or maybe already is, really comes down to listening to yourself. In each of the situations above, pay very close attention to what jumps out at you? What outfits do your eyes gravitate towards when you’re traveling, shopping or browsing through magazines? What lines in books speak to you? What scents do you gravitate towards? What destinations seem to be calling your name? Who do you look up to? Who inspires you? What textures feel good? What flavors leave you always wanting more?
By being honest about your true passions and tendencies, you will find that you are closer to narrowing down your signature style than you may have at first realized. Now it’s time to have the confidence to own it. Click here to read part three.