A few weeks ago, this random girl stopped me and told me that she liked how my clothes fit. I think I know what she meant, but it struck me as an odd thing to receive a compliment for. She likely told me this because 90% of the guys I see Uptown every day are wearing clothes that do not fit correctly. I occasionally see clothes that are too small, but the majority of what I see are clothes that are too big. Now I am a tall guy, 6’4″ to be exact, and I wear a medium shirt. You would think I wear a large or XL being that tall, but I don’t. Medium. All day long. So first things first, learn what size you wear and buy that size. Be honest with yourself. Just because you wore a large in high school does not mean that is what you wear now. Wearing clothes that fit is a quick, easy way to make yourself look 100% better. Second thing. If you don’t have a tailor or alterations person, get to know one. My go-to in Charlotte is Myers Park Tailors. They have touched every suit, jacket, pant, and shirt that I own. A good tailor can make a $300 suit look like a $1,000 suit. And contrastingly, a very expensive suit not properly tailored will look extremely sloppy. Pay attention to fit. Please.
So let’s forget about clothes for a second, and just think about finding the right fit in life. This applies to a number of categories including relationships, career, where you live, and so on. Finding the right fit can involve some trial and error and/or may take some time, but when you find it, the result can be fantastic. For example, I played soccer in college, and for a variety of reasons decided not to play my senior season. It can best be described that it was no longer a good fit for me. It was an extremely tough decision that I thought about for months on end. However, that decision opened up the door for me to continue playing elsewhere in graduate school, which ended up being one of the best experiences of my life. Literally the perfect fit. Another example revolves around finding the right place to live. I have wanted to live in the big city for as long as I can remember. I love the skyscrapers, the sports teams, the restaurants, and all of the action. 10 years ago, my wife and I lived in a rural area, which was lovely, but didn’t have everything we were looking for. We then moved to Charlotte about 15 minutes from Uptown. Again, it was lovely, but didn’t have exactly what we were looking for. So about a year ago, we finally found it: the perfect lot in the perfect location where we built the perfect house. I know life can be complicated and involves a certain amount of compromise, but you also have to be willing to pursue the things that fit who you are and what you are looking for in life.
When I was in my teens and twenties, I would oftentimes buy designer clothes that were on major sale, even if they weren’t exactly the right size. I thought, “it doesn’t exactly fit, but who cares, it is X designer.” Big mistake. I have learned that one of the most important things about presenting yourself is wearing clothes that fit. It doesn’t matter if you wear $15 shirts from TJ Maxx, high fashion designers, or somewhere in between. Make sure it fits. If you are feeling a little inspired by reading this, I challenge you to go to your closet with a trash bag and fill it up with things that don’t fit and will likely never fit. Take that bag to Goodwill and you will be accomplishing two things at once: giving someone that really needs them the opportunity to buy these clothes for a few bucks, and not tempting yourself to continue wearing things that don’t fit. While you are doing that exercise, turn on some tunes and think about if the things you are doing in your life and people you are surrounding yourself with are good fits for you. If so, fantastic. If not, give it some real thought and consider doing something about it.
Have a great week. -Benj