How I used my closet to get to my Truth ..
Have you ever ordered the thing at the restaurant that you didn’t really want, but you ordered it because it was $3 cheaper, healthier, or your friends were ordering something different?
And then since you had the salad instead of the burger, you get icecream for balance …
And since you saved $3 by not adding avocado, you can now get a $6 almond milk unicorn latte...
And since you ordered something smaller to not be the odd one out, you go home and eat an entire bag of paleo puffs ...
When in reality, if you just ordered the burger with avocado in the first place, you’d have left lunch feeling pretty damn satisfied and not felt the need to ‘make up for it.’
Or hey, maybe that’s just me ..
This was always the way shopping worked for me. I’d buy the shorts that were a little too big but an additional 25% off or the things that were trendy that I should be wearing to be ‘stylish.’ I’d buy things I thought I liked, but they were also the same things my friends were wearing. And I was left with a closet FULL of purposeless things. I’d forget about my favorite pieces because they were buried behind two-size-too-big pants and a neon Forever 21 going out top.
And this, like the smaller, cheaper, salad option, was comfortable.
It’s what I did, it’s how I ate, it’s the way I shopped.
And I should just keep doing it because everything was fine as it was.
Until fine stopped feeling so fine.
It started when I went shopping to play dress up, rather than to buy anything. I walked into any and every store that peaked my interest and picked up every item in the store that grabbed my attention. I spent hours in fitting rooms - trying on everything, mixing + matching pieces, twirling in different shapes. I started to learn what fabrics I was drawn to, what colors lit me up, and what shapes I liked on my body. I’d then awkwardly sneak out past the sales associate, leaving a room overflowing with clothes and my hands empty.
It was through this process that I started to learn exactly who this ‘authentic self’ is that I talk about so much. I learned what felt right to ME by tuning into what I actually liked - not the price tag or validation from friends that I liked. I learned to think bigger and to think for myself. I was no longer shopping how I’d been taught to shop or within the limitations I had set for myself. I was shopping FREELY .. and it was powerful.
Because once I realized how good it was possible to feel in clothes and how fun/freeing it was to shop without limits, I didn’t want to settle for less. I started going through my closet monthly and getting rid of whatever wasn’t a FUCK YES. I stopped buying lots of cheap things and focused on finding pieces that LIT me up. It often took time to find these pieces, whether I had to save a little each month, wait till they were back in stock, or keep searching until it was exactly what I wanted.
At first, my closet got smaller - to the point where it was like what the ef do I even wear now? So I rewore the same pieces I loved over and over. I got more creative, and getting dressed got easier. Piece by piece, I began building my closet differently. I began building it with pieces that lit me up. I began building it from my truth.
And then slowly, the same thing started happening in my life. I stopped taking the cheap version of freelance jobs - ones that underpaid me and didn’t value my work ethic. I let go of relationships that were there out of comfort and just like a closet full of stuff .. were cluttering my view of who I really liked. I even moved out of a city that no longer felt like a FUCK YES.
And in the same way I had to get back to the bare bones of my closet, I’m currently back to the bare bones of my life. So I can begin choosing my life in the way I’m choosing my wardrobe - intentionally & authentically.
I’m choosing a new place to call home that is taking months to save up for and time in figuring out a visa. I’ve let go of relationships, & relationships have shifted. Because like clothes, I know exactly how I want to feel in my relationships.
The thing is that unlike dropping off a bag of clothes at Goodwill, this process has not been so easy and definitely hasn’t happened over night. It’s been slow & emotional - because saying no to a city that isn’t a ‘fuck yes’ is much harder than saying no to a dress that isn’t ‘fuck yes,’ and saying goodbye to a relationship is way more painful than saying goodbye to an H&M sweater.
But for me, it comes down to the fact that we get this one life to live. And if you can’t enjoy it the way you want to … with a burger + avocado (truffle fries too), wearing an Ulla Johnson dress, with friends who also want the burger .. then whats the point of it all?
So here, my friends, is to going after closets, meals, and lives that LIGHT us up!
Step by step, dress by dress, burger by burger …
(black bean burgers welcome too)