I have a new secret weapon.
Weeks ago, I had a moment where I wasn’t having as much of a personal financial crisis. All summer I’ve desperately needed a new pair of jeans, so once I could breathe a bit easier I trotted off to Nordstrom Rack to see if I could find any pants.
Sidenote – why is pant shopping the worst? I can buy breeches much easier than I can buy regular people pants. My breeches are also much nicer, but I digress…
In the rack of smancy items heavily marked down but also super unorganized, I saw it. A black blazer, nicely made and expensive, but severely price slashed. Much like the soft shell jacket of my show dreams (that I have yet to find), the fabric hung nicely and the sleeves swayed at me as I picked the hanger off the rack. Try me on… you’ll like me I promise!
And I did like the blazer, a lot.
Usually I don’t buy anything above $50, but that day I was feeling (momentarily) in charge of my life for the first time in months. During my mini shopping spree I picked up two pairs of jeans and my new blazer.
Then I had to patiently wait for the temperature to fall below 95 degrees because I live in Texas, but eventually I got to wear my new item to work.
Now my office is super casual. Winning best dressed here is like shooting fish in a barrel. The normal apparel for my 90% male co-workers is shorts and a t-shirt referencing some sort of nerd-culture. I’ve already talked about how I’m putting more effort into my appearance lately, but the blazer was a notch above my new normal. People noticed, and I got some comments.
“Feeling fancy today?”
“Oh, what’s with the blazer?”
But instead of feeling self conscious about not blending in, I felt self confident. I joked with a female co-worker about dressing up more that day, and promptly named my new item “The Power Blazer.”
Since that day, I’ve realized the power blazer has magical powers. When I’m the lowest person on the org chart in a meeting, and everyone is looking to me to speak I typically think… OH GOD THIS IS SO STRESSFUL. I CAN’T HANDLE THIS RIGHT NOW. MUST PULL SOMETHING OUT OF ASS. DID I SOUND SMART? DID I SOUND IMPORTANT? OH LORD THEY ALL THINK I’M AN IDIOT.”
When I’m wearing my power blazer, I sit a little straight in my seat and feel more composed. Because I look put together, I feel put together. It’s a tiny but important difference.
Car shopping is a big decision with huge financial implications. Thinking about items that large and permanent makes my head want to spin. When I sit in a car to test drive, I want to say, “THIS IS AWESOME. HOW MUCH? TAKE MONEY. TAKE JEWELRY. TAKE WHATEVER. LOAN FOREVER. LOVE CAR!”
With power blazer, I feel like my image is over-representing me. I, powerful business woman of wealth and life experience, is here to obtain a vehicle. By all means, point me to your highest safety rating and reasonable APR options.
It doesn’t have to be a blazer. Maybe for you it’s a necklace, or pair of heels or even a masculine brief case. Whatever your tool – find it. I know it’s tempting to always live in the land of comfort and casual in the work place and in life, but we need our own little power trip sometimes.