Not too long ago, I was one of the masses of the brave new world who hardly ever dressed up. For me it was shorts and tshirts when casual and chinos and polos for dress up. And if I had to get super dressed up I pulled out the fancy black suit form JC Penney and the fancy square-toed shoes from DSW. And this was up until a couple of years ago. I had no concept of fashion and no idea how to dress professionally even though I'm an accountant. Partly because I also never even bothered to look around to see what others wore.
Then a couple of years ago I was at a CPA conference and for some reason I started to notice how many others were dressed better than I was. Not all of them because there are plenty of badly dressed accountants. But, enough dressed well that it made me notice. And the ones that dressed the best also were the ones people looked up to the most. Did it mean they knew more? Not necessarily. But, it seemed to give others confidence in their opinions.
So, I started my journey of education. It started with videos from Real Men Real Style which led to many other videos and websites, including this one. I had a lot of learning to do. I had never heard of most of the brands talked about, although, I had heard of BB, but had never been in one.
When I started dressing better, I noticed some things. First, it made me feel better about myself. Like I was taking pride in my appearance and actually trying rather than just putting on something clean and going with it. Secondly, I noticed how others treated me. They started to treat me with more respect, even though nothing inward had really changed. Although, some friends were confused by my clothing, wondering what had happened, though, they all agreed it looked good. I just went to another CPA conference a month ago and this time I was dressed appropriately and didn't feel out of place at all. In fact, I felt like for the first time in my career I actually know how to dress professionally.
That's not to say that all of a sudden I was better than anyone else. I'm certainly not. But, I notice when I dress well, I feel better about myself and other people treat me in a way that I like. I think as long as someone isn't walking around like they're better than someone just because they "dress better" (which is subjective) then it's fine to dress up in this "brave new world" and enjoy yourself.