After a week of box-hauling and inevitable yet unforeseen expenses, I hopped out of the shower and straight to the wardrobe to shake things up from the norm; untamed hair, that ‘difficult’ wardrobe item that never seems right for the day’s occasions in the morning, and a wine-phobic pair of white jeans that managed to survive the day.
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I, thankfully, learned this force majeure is that of an OCD persuasion. And does far more harm than good. After years of running myself ragged, all it takes is a little bit of enforced perspective and I’m half-way unwound.
Nonetheless, I am a work in progress. Over the last few months I have discovered that dedicating at least one hour a day to something indulgent – be it cooking a meal or doing a dance class – keeps me sane. That music at least two decades old will always make me smile. That wearing a killer dress, even when working from home, takes my brain from ‘work mode’ to ‘party mode’ and almost doubles my productivity. That I can better help those in need when I help myself.
As stress is a heavy-handed trigger for acid reflex/heartburn/other such nonsense, I also make sure to physically limit any irritants while I work on my brain game. I avoid eating late (or forgetting to eat altogether), eating spicy or citric food, and drinking alcohol or caffeine (though, cards on the table, I will always be dependent on an espresso or five to run at a normal human pace).
In this age of digital distractions and predominantly demanding days, relaxation has to be a conscious choice. I fully advocate finding out what works best for you.
And listen to a lot of Robert Palmer while you’re at it.
While there may be fewer options available, the limitations mean anything from a pair of jeans to a t-shirt can become a power player in a man’s wardrobe.
Nonetheless, I am a die-hard femme and feel like an alien if I try to pull off anything a few swathes of fabric far from a wrap dress. Until I adopt a harem of sartorially-fearless toddlers, my ‘male’ wardrobe choices will have to be nothing more than the “we have another package from boohooMAN?” thrill of my boyfriend.
Though the thought rarely crosses my mind, I thought it might be a bit…well…extra. But snow needs must.
When I opened my windows to an unlikely flurry of southern snow, it was – quite frankly – the best sartorial decision I could make. And the numerous Instagram requests to buy the coat off me have only affirmed the decision.
‘Tis the season to be extra, after all.
Nothing beats Christmas on Oxford Street. It is beautifully chaotic. The hundreds – maybe thousands – of shoppers dashing throughout the 200+ shops, the glistening lights, the tourists carefully choosing presents for their loved ones from the greatest city in the world – it is all so wonderfully London.
It also happens to be the only place in the city guaranteed to meet holiday party dressing needs so, for all intensive festive purposes, I decided to treat myself to a personal shopping excursion with the wonderful Style Doctors team in the one spare hour I had this month.
With nothing but a few sparkle-loving pointers, the ‘Power Hour’ session (an Oxford Street exclusive service that employs a Style Doctors’ stylist to a perfect outfit in one hour) left me with a new ensemble of dreams for less than £100. In under 45 minutes.
If only that saved time and money could be spared come the January sales…