coping mechanism

Why Dressing Up in Quarantine Has Become a Coping Mechanism

We are in the middle of the worst pandemic in human history in nearly a century. To say COVID-19 has been disruptive would be an understatement. The pandemic has completely transformed our way of life in a few short months. People, businesses, and the world, in general, have had to endure massive change within a few short months. Within that small timespan, COVID-19 has forced most of us to stay indoors or be at risk of exposure. People are voluntarily self-isolating to safely get through the pandemic, including giving up every day social interactions.

Of course, since restaurants, bars, clubs, and amusement parks are not safe under the current conditions, people no longer really gather in numbers. And since that doesn’t happen, many of us are tempted to not bother with our everyday clothes. Comfy pajamas and loungewear are all you usually need to work remotely or attend online classes. It’s easy to see why you may not be feeling up to dressing up in your classy khaki shirt and swanky chinos. But don’t sacrifice your well-being to COVID-19, because dressing up may actually act as a coping mechanism during the extended quarantine. This blog discusses how.

Conditioning Your Mood

Do you ever wonder why a high-quality outfit consisting of American made clothing makes you feel so good? Virtually every guy has felt a lot more powerful when wearing a classy tuxedo to a wedding or a black-tie fundraiser. Now compare that to how you would feel in a pair of baggy jeans and a shirt that doesn’t fit you well. Not as powerful, right? As humans, we are encouraged from a young age to be self-confident individuals. Why? Because frankly, the world can be a cruel place, and you need every bit of confidence you can muster to make the most of it.

As humans, of course, we are also no strangers to feeling underconfident due to external factors. Whether it’s a tiny coffee stain on a pristine shirt or a rip in your favorite jacket, you’ll likely not be very comfortable about it. This will directly impact your mood, making you feel underconfident, especially if people point out the source. But at the same time, the exact opposite of wearing something nice and feeling good as a result also exists. The fact is, our moods have become conditioned to reflect our surroundings, especially our clothes. Since COVID-19, 2020 has been a very stressful and exhausting year. Wearing “lazy clothes” may feel comfortable, but it could be impacting your mood as well.

If you don’t believe me, try it out for yourself. Toss the grey trousers and sweatshirt in the laundry, and put on a smart pair of khaki pants and a bright well-fitting sweater. Do you see the difference? More importantly, do you feel your mood improving? I thought so! Dressing up may seem pointless during isolation. But it is still a feel-good exercise that you are denying yourself when you need it the most.  

Hanging on To the Normal We Remember

Of course, dressing up to feel nice because we look nice isn’t the only way to cope. Dressing up is also being used as a way to hang on to a normal that seems like an eternity away. Think about it. Remember that eye-catching leather jacket you bought that everyone liked? Or the empowering feeling of walking down the street with the latest piece of urban footwear on display for all and sundry? These things seem so far away now, yet until recently, they were an almost commonplace part of our lives. Of course, things are different now, and while they may not always stay this way, it is still hard to accept the new reality. So, it’s really nothing to be embarrassed about to still dress up in an outfit you would have worn to work or to the club or even to a movie night with friends. We are all trying to cope, but that doesn’t mean we have to forget what life was like before COVID-19. Even if you’re probably not going to head out, wearing a piece of pre-COVID clothing serves as a nostalgic reminder of the normal that we took for granted.

No Better Opportunity to Be Adventurous

What’s one thing about COVID-19 that everyone agrees on? That it is like nothing we have ever seen before. There are really no precedents for a pandemic on this scale since 1920. And even when compared to the Spanish Flu of 1920, the world has changed beyond recognition, so COVID-19 may prove to be even deadlier. So, we have an unprecedented pandemic that seemingly appeared out of nowhere and dismantled the global economy. Even the brightest economic and medical minds of our time are filled with uncertainty and doubt. So, how can you expect yourself to conform to something when there is nothing to conform to?

COVID-19 has been violently transformational. But it has also shown us that we can’t count on many aspects of society to function during a pandemic. As a result, we really don’t need to dance to anyone else’s tune. In a time when everyone is cutting their own hair and experimenting with banana bread, what’s holding you back from pushing your fashion horizons? Explore new looks, modify old clothes, and experiment with different outfits. Everyone is doing crazy stuff, so don’t be afraid to try some yourself.

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