Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Parenting Tip - Dress the Dress to Walk the Walk

"If you’re going to talk the talk, you’ve got to walk the walk."

"Dress makes the man (woman)."

I've been thinking about how I dress and how I walk the walk; that is, how to dress according to what I'm doing for the day. 

Have you noticed how you feel different by what clothes you are wearing.  If you are dressed up to go shopping, you certainly don't feel like cleaning the house. On the other hand, if you're dressed in tennis shoes and work clothes, you don't mind getting more dirty by sweeping or mopping the floor .

Since I don't like cleaning very much, I have to psych myself up to do it.  I have to wear tennis shoes and clothes that aren't spic and span clean (meaning I already wore them yesterday!)  My hair still needs to be curled and combed and I don't have any make up on.  In other words, I look rather grungie, ready to work and maybe get sweaty in the process.

Then I have to turn up some music nice and loud (my favorite is "Happy Working Song" from the movie Enchanted) or listen to an interesting podcast, and I'm ready to clean.

If I'm gardening or working outside, I wear the same sort of clothing--a little soiled and definitely tennis shoes--I can't work outside in flip flops, I don't want to get my feet dirty.

But, I've noticed that I can't do other things with that particular "outfit" on--like teach piano lessons or do emailing business work or create music lesson plans.  For these type of activities, I do much better when I'm dressed in nicer clothes, my hair is done, my make up is on and I feel "presentable". 
Then I'm ready and motivated to work with my brain.

The way we dress DOES effect our behavior.  Haven't you told that to your children before?  Why do we have to dress up for Church?  Because you act more respectful and reverent; you feel more dignified. Why can't I wear shorts and flip flops to school? Because you'll feel like playing instead of listening and learning.

My husband had a beard and mustache for probably more than half of our married life.  He admitted that when he had a beard, he felt more sloppy and unkempt and behaved that way.  Oh yeah, funny story that I just remembered about my husband. 

My husband had NO sense of dress.  He would go for a walk in the morning dressed in a holy old t shirt with suspenders holding up a grubby pair of sweat pants and wearing an old, old pair of tennis shoes.  One morning while walking in the parking lot of a grocery store, a man in a car drove up to him and asked him if he needed some breakfast;  he was willing to give him some food.  The man thought he was homeless!!  I died laughing when my husband came home and told me what had happened.  It was close to Christmas so guess what my husband got for a present?  Yep, new exercise clothes.

So what do we do with this knowledge of dressing?  Dress for what you're doing that day.  If it's laundry, cleaning and scrubbing day, then you better get your tennies on.  If you need to get some cooking done, wear your apron (my daughters do) and get to cooking.  If you're running to the store, and school most of the day and will be seen by people--dress nicer.

What about if you want to parent better, hmmmmm, what to wear?  Are you more patient with your children, do you take advantage of teaching moments, and are you more loving to them when you're dressed in nicer clothes?

That would be an interesting experiment to try:  "Does what I'm wearing really affect my attitude and effectiveness as a mom?"  I know dressing appropriately certainly affects how many things I get done on my "To Do" list.

Here's some quotes I found by unknown sources:

Every girl should know to dress for success. No one will take you seriously if you show up in leggings and Uggs
  Thanks for reading,




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