Look good, feel good.
You’ve likely heard it before.
A little cliche? Maybe.
Former NFL superstar Deion Sanders took it a step further.
His famous quote goes, “If you look good, you feel good. If you feel good, you play good. If you play good, they PAY good.”
I couldn’t agree more with Sanders.
Let me explain why.
We’ve all been through the awkward stage in our lives. Mine came to abrupt end after a fateful trip to the mall.
While waiting outside of Starbucks I noticed a few older students from my high school walking by. They were laughing but I didn’t think much of it.
It wasn’t until I realized that I was the butt-end of their jokes (their pointing at me was very obvious). In that moment my heart immediately sank.
Here I was thinking that the way I dressed and did my hair was perfectly fine.
My confidence came crashing down that day and I knew it wasn’t an experience worth going through again.
Something had to give.
As a result, I’ve dedicated the last 12 years of my life to learn as much as I possibly can about men’s style and grooming.
I can confidently say that things have turned around and I’m dressing much better now, carrying myself with confidence, and feel more attractive than ever before.
This brings me back to Sanders’ quote.
Whether he realized it or not, he was referencing something much greater than men’s style.
Recently there’s been an emerging train of thought in cognitive scientific. It’s called embodied cognition which adds credibility to what Sanders said.
The basic idea of embodied cognition is that we don’t just think with our minds but we use our bodies too. In other words, our appearance influences our psychology.
This means that the way we look: what we wear, how we feel when we see ourselves in the mirror, and how our clothes feel against our skin, all affect how we carry ourselves.
Not buying it?
Check out this experiment conducted by Dr. Galinsky and Hajo Adam confirming this theory.
74 university students were randomly assigned the EXACT same white lab coat.
Half of them were told it was a “doctor’s coat.” The other half were told it was a “painter’s smock.”
Afterwards they were given a test to see how accurate their attention to detail was.
Students who thought they were wearing a “doctor’s coat” performed significantly better than the students wearing “painter’s smocks.”
Why is this?
Well, their theory is that clothes invade the body and brain which influences the person who’s wearing it psychological state.
Rather than boring you with further details of the study, let’s talk about how you can use this information to your advantage!
The key takeaway from this study is that your image isn’t just about looking good and being fashionable.
Your image directly influences your performance.
So if you’re a man who values career and dating success but isn’t bringing his A-game when it comes to your appearance, you’re selling yourself short.
You want to keep in mind that we only have 7 seconds to make a first impression.
Within that small window of opportunity people decide whether you’re a friend or a foe. This is an extension of our fight our flight response.
The easiest way to make a good first impression and win them over is through your style.
Your style is a form of non-verbal communication which makes up 55% of ALL communication.
It gives people an idea of who you are without having to say a word.
Style also has the ability to earn you more interest from women, be valued and respected at work, and easily improve your confidence.
As a result of feeling more attractive, confident, and respected you’re more likely to voice your opinion and get what you want.
This could be asking for a raise, getting a cute girl’s phone number, or standing up for yourself when somebody’s crossed the line.
All of which is behaviour that men who have tapped into their natural confidence and their true masculine essence display on a regular basis.
So what steps can you take today?
It all begins with establishing what your end goal is.
Define the qualities about yourself that you’d like others pick up on within a few seconds of meeting you.
Once you’ve done that, building a wardrobe that reflects those qualities is easy.
Your next step is to audit your current wardrobe.
This means sorting through your closet and deciding what clothes fit your vision and which ones don’t.
Anything that doesn’t belong should be donated. Consider it your good deed for the day since somebody else can put them to good use.
If you’re not clear about what pieces you NEED to keep in your wardrobe check out this free style guide that outlines the 16 must-have items to build a perfect wardrobe.
Once your audit’s complete, the next phase is to create a shopping list of what needs to be added. This will make it much easier to fill in the gaps of your wardrobe.
Having a list of the clothes that are within your budget ensures that you won’t waste any time or money when you hit the mall. It’s basically a map of what stores you need to go to.
Assuming that you now have all of the pieces you need to create the image you’ve defined for yourself the final step is to start planning out your outfits.
Planning ahead is a quality that all leaders exhibit.
Let’s talk about Steve Jobs for a second.
Though he’s not known for his trend-setting style, he is a man many people would consider a great leader. He also had a lot of demands on his time and energy.
He was able to dedicate more brainpower to big picture decisions because he always wore the same thing — a black turtleneck, jeans, and New Balance sneakers.
Jobs made his daily routine more efficient by planning ahead.
Saving him a great deal of time and valuable energy.
You may want to avoid wearing the EXACT same clothes everyday. That’s likely going to raise questions about your hygiene.
What you want to do instead is to define what your “uniform” is.
This means planning each of your outfits around your lifestyle, what your schedule looks like, and what activities have the highest priority.
Doing so will create a consistent look for you. You could consider this defining your personal brand.
It’s a foolproof approach to dressing in a way that you can feel good about in everyday situations while looking good.
There you have it guys.
It’s true what they say about looking good and feeling good. You may not be a Dion Sanders fan but he did have a remarkable career.
Perhaps his secret was more than just showing up to practice, hitting the gym, and being disciplined with his nutrition.
Remember that your image goes beyond just being fashionable since it’s been scientifically proven to influence your psychology.
The best part is that for anyone who isn’t bringing their A-game when it comes to style, it’s actually fairly straightforward to step your game up.
It begins with establishing a vision for yourself, building a wardrobe that reflects that vision, always planning ahead, and reaping the rewards of looking good.