Sometimes a shopping mission isn’t always accomplished. Mirrors mislead us, crowds blind us and our internal GPS leaves us stranded somewhere between our intended target and our best intentions.
The following exercise borrows from the body scan method that is used in meditation. The idea is to feel how your clothes are fitting by plugging into the sensation that arises from head to toe.
We are so used to looking in the mirror which is loaded with judgement and expectations; not to mention magic mirrors which can physically distort our perceptions of how things look. This takes us into a more honest, real place.
Stand tall and close your eyes. Start by focusing your awareness from the top of where the garment touches the body. If you’re wearing a hood or a hat start from the head; otherwise the neck will do fine. Pay particular attention to any tightness or general sensations in that area.
- Ask yourself how does it fit?
- Do you feel constricted or loose in any area? If so where?
- Move your arms and legs gently in place. Bend your knees slightly.
- How does the fabric feel on your skin? Does it itch, glide, tickle?
Now ask yourself: How does this make you feel: comfortable, secure; relaxed?
Stand with your eyes closed a little bit longer, shifting your body weight slightly from leg to leg; side to side, all the while keeping your focus on the contact between the skin and the garment. Repeat the same process concentrating on the sensation of each garment until you reach your toes.
Ultimately, how a garment feels is critical to how it makes you feel about yourself. Sure, it’s lovely to have an optical illusion dress shave a few inches off the waistline but you feel like you’ve been shoved into a medieval torture device, what’s the point? Too often we fall foul of bad lighting, wonky sizing or second opinions with a hidden agenda which seem to coincide with moments of weakness and uncertainty. If in doubt, do a mini-meditative barcode scan of your own. No mirror, no queues and no changing room required.