That is something that I am still wrapping my head around. If I cannot do something perfectly, the first time, then I do not even try. And mistakes? Forget about it. I cannot make them. The one place I have always been confident was in fashion. From junior high until now, I boldly wore whatever I wanted. I was so sure of my sartorial choices that making a mistake didn’t even enter my mind. If anyone had anything negative to say – which honestly didn’t happen all that often – I even had the confidence to stand my ground and not let it affect me. In fact, I used clothing to both protect myself, as well as overcome my introversion. I could protect myself by dressing as the person I wanted to be, a person at ease in whatever situation I found myself in. It helped me overcome my introversion by giving me a built-in topic to converse about. I do not care what the event is, a woman will find another woman to compliment what they are wearing as an icebreaker. Honestly, how many friendships have started by bonding over shoes? Dressing in a way that stands out ensures that people will come talk to me (gonna leave the mating call analogies alone). And while I am not a big fan of small talk, I am less of a fan of standing by myself at an event.
Better an oops than a what if has become a motto of sorts in the year since we started this blog. Standing in front of a camera (and in public no less) has taken years of talking myself into it, tears, panic attacks, and even therapy. My fears and trepidations in starting this blog were/are clearly deeper than the blog itself, and this past year has been a journey in finding my voice, my self-worth, my confidence, and my power. I am putting myself out there in ways, even just two years ago, I never would have thought possible. A big reason why I never let my blog dreams die was because I KNEW I would regret it. I saw a future of a lot of what ifs, and I am at a point in my life where I no longer have time for that shit. Shedding a boat load of emotional baggage by launching A Fashionating Life has made any uncertainties and worries about stepping in front of the camera worth it. Where fashion also used to be the only place I felt comfortable complimenting myself, I am very proud that I started this blog.
Goals for this blog for the next year are to write at least two of these, what we call, “mission driven” posts each month. Out of everything we post, they resonate with our audience the most. We also want to use some of our more personal experiences to connect with our readers on a deeper level. Divorce, blended families, assorted child-centric challenges? Check, check, and check. These types of posts are more time consuming, sometimes painful, but rather healing to write. A different form of therapy, I guess. Lastly, we want to write at least one career-oriented piece each month. Why tout our years of vast professional experiences if we aren’t going to share what we have learned? We want this blog to be more about the best white button-down shirt or LBD and we believe that this will be a nice balance to posting outfits for outfits sake, so to speak.
The reason for this post is many-fold: First, I have learned how productive it is to make my intentions known. I am a big believer in the adage, “The difference between a dream and a goal is a plan,” and my plans always start with writing down my goals and holding myself accountable by making them public in some form or fashion. Secondly, to put down in writing what this past year of blogging has meant to me. No matter what happens, there are no mistakes. There is no oops. There will be no what if. I had an idea, a dream, and a desire and I gave it my all. Even if it folds tomorrow, I consider this blog to be a success, and nobody can take that away from me.
Images by Breezy Ritter