The Closet Countdown: The Morning After

It’s over. My one hundred day adventure in minimalist-style clothing ended yesterday. I’m relieved and a bit overwhelmed. I doubt I will repeat The Closet Countdown any time soon. But I grew. I feel it. I see it in the pictures I posted.

I have my “lessons learned” post in the works but in the meantime, I thought I’d go ahead and post a few initial reactions while they are still very fresh in my mind.

Last night, I pulled down my two bins of “unchosen” clothing. First thing this morning, I opened them. Right after feeling joy at seeing some of my loved items, my heart sagged a bit. There were literally piles of clothes around me that needed to be sorted.

I felt buried.

So I put on the dress I’d missed the most: my Merrell Emery in Manganese Ikat. Honestly, I didn’t like it at first. I felt like the color was “wrong” or the fit felt “off”. The dress was fine. I was just in a strange funk.

I thought about how I felt the last weekend of The Closet Countdown. Brave. Bold. Creative. Beautiful even. Immediately my posture changed. My face brightened. So I decided to wear the dress for the day and take a few pics (see for yourself at the end of this post ;)).

Flattering clothes – fit, color, style, hem length, etc. – matters very much. But the real style is inside. The moment we choose to see ourselves as someone worth looking at, we become more attractive. Our confidence and freedom from fear of what others think makes our smile brighter, our posture straighter. When I feel beautiful, the world around me is more beautiful. Brighter. And I feel connected to that beauty because I have found a tiny grain of it in myself.

That’s how I decided to feel this morning when I put on my “other” Merrell Emery Dress. That’s how I hope to feel every morning. šŸ™‚

If you are reading this, know that you are beautiful. Maybe your hair isn’t “perfect”. Maybe your shape won’t ever be in a magazine. Maybe you’ve had a few bad days in a row that kept you from smiling. But inside you is beauty. You carry it with you wherever you go. I know because today I walked out into the world and I felt it. It’s all around us. Inside us. We just have to have the courage to show it.

Thank you for taking the time to read my words. I’m honored to share your company here on My Simplicity Quest.

Shine On,

G

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15 comments

  1. Ginny, you make such a good point. I think we buy clothes, make-up, etc. to cover up for the fact that we don’t see ourselves as beautiful. We keep hoping that some miracle product will fix everything…

    But we need to realize that it’s the variety of people–all of us, with our pudgy cheeks, monkey ears, big noses, and goofy teeth–that make the world beautiful. If we all looked like Cindy Crawford, life would be horribly boring.

  2. “The moment we choose to see ourselves as someone worth looking at, we become more attractive.”

    Just lovely.
    And I think that dress is gorgeous!

  3. You, and your words, are beautiful. So much to comment on here, but in the spirit of brevity, I’ll simply make one observation. Have you noticed that when you started the challenge, the pics you shared were wee, little tiny things, all in a small collage. We could see you, but we couldn’t really SEE you, if you know what I mean. The last few have been big, beautiful close-up pics. You are radiant and confident and unafraid to share your beauty with the world. You’re officially a butterfly now, G. xoxo n

    1. I had not noticed but I see it now. And I know why I made them small. Hell, when I first started, I was only going to post pics of the clothes by themselves. No me in the pic. No way. But gradually, I changed my mind. I wanted to stay small because I felt small. But the more encouragement I received, the bolder I felt. You were a very big part of that. Huge, in fact. I still cringe (a lot) when I post the pics of myself. But I just care less about what people will think because as long as there are people like you in the world, I’m safe to be myself.

      It felt like such an insignificant experiment. But I’m learning that there are very few insignificant things in my life. Stepping outside of my comfort zone was not easy but I felt alive. I felt connected to brave people. Like you…

      I don’t feel “radiant or confident” but there is less fear. And maybe it’s not about how I feel as much as it is about how you see me.

      Thank you again for cheering me on all along the way. You hold a very special place in my heart.

  4. That is so right. I remember being eighteen at a nightclub and staring at this girl because she wasn’t very pretty and yet she was so attractive. It was all in the self-confidence. I noticed people responding to it though I never figured out where she got it from (or how I could get the same). I’m still trying to reach for that confidence – even half of it.

  5. Congratulations at reaching your goal Ginny! Just sticking with something for 100 days is an amazing challenge and I’m glad I was along for part of the ride šŸ™‚ I’ve always felt that a smile and an optimistic attitude were my greatest “outfit.” Luckily it takes no space whatsoever and is always available and costs nothing. And I agree with what Nancy said above…in the beginning your photos were tiny little things…it’s nice to see that your confidence has grown to the point where you are willing to be seen.

    So what’s next? ~Kathy

    1. Thank you, sweet, wonderful Kathy! A smile is a minimalist’s greatest treasure. šŸ™‚ (I obviously just made that up…). Thank you for your constant encouragement along the way. I grew because beautiful people like you took the time to comment and cheer.

      I thought about your question “So what’s next?” on my run today. I have no idea. I feel like I need to sort through my lessons and see where the path leads… Either way, I look forward to learning and growing and having you in my corner. šŸ™‚

      Cheers!

      1. You’re very welcome Ginny…it’s always a pleasure to read your posts….and you know why I asked you what’s next right? The article I researched about hope said that the most hopeful people are always “nexting”….in other words…they stay focused on what’s next and it helps to make they more hopeful and optimistic…I think of you that way….so happy “Nexting!”

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