In most cases, it takes a lot of bravery for someone to call me and talk about their relationship to clothing. Usually, a discouraging or frustrating view of their closet prompts the call when they realize its current contents will not support their new opportunities.
It’s a humble place to be, and I honor their sincere ask.
When we first meet, their goal is always the same: get rid of clothes and acquire new ones. Supposedly, this is an easy fix. Or at least it looks that way on the internet.
The concept is that I will arrive at their house with a garbage can, and in less time than it takes to watch a couple hours of Netflix, I will have created an organized, styled closet that exudes creativity, and world peace.
Last year, though my client had paid me thousands of dollars to start a year long process of embodying authenticity, she whined for most of the 2 hours,when we arrived at her highly disorganized closet, after much internal pre-work. We had an end in mind, written on paper, even, but the dread of facing almost every piece of clothing she owned was more than she could bear. It skewed both her reflection in the mirror and the view of her closet, because years of negative messages from others and herself were staring at her.
But starting with the end in mind, such as an organized, styled closet, isn’t as successful a strategy for this kind of work.
The need to have moments of being very present to what is makes the difference. And often, to heal what was and wasn’t from the past.
Despite a myopic vision, we must come to terms with what is staring back at us, and we must be vulnerable enough to see our selves in the mirror.
But how? If we can’t look inward due to trauma of some kind, and the vision in the mirror causes a litany of negative voices, where do we look?
I often encourage clients to look at their children or kids they know who are very free when they twirl in a mirror with delight. Children, not caring what you think and unencumbered by negative input, capture an accurate, joyful view of themselves.
That’s the end I have in mind for men and women, at least as a start to world peace.
Recapturing the view is the fundamental change and the way up and the way out of an overstuffed closet.