Author, Jodi Belden

WHEN I WAS A LITTLE GIRL GROWING UP IN Deerfield Beach, Florida, I was obsessed with how clothes looked and how outfits were put together. My favorite fashion icons were the Supers: Cindy! Naomi! Linda! My favorite designers were the classic American greats: Michael! Oscar! Isaac! I always wanted to recreate outfits I saw in magazine and movies. Pretty Woman is my first fashion memory. To this day, I am still hunting for the perfect short suit a la the Vivian post makeover. I kept outfit journals and tracked everything I wore so I wouldn’t dare repeat it. I remember dragging my mom to thrift stores all over our city looking for a classic trench coat or full skirt, even a pair of classic pointy-toed heels. I wasn’t allowed to wear them out, but that didn’t stop me for strutting around the house. I didn’t even know how much things cost, I was always just trying to find a way to be close to this world of fashion, which inevitably lead me to a job at ELLE magazine. After moving to Manhattan from the University of Florida, I started to see that what was once an innocent love of fashion, turned into a reason to feel not good enough and incomplete. Working for a fashion magazine that pays next to nothing with too much pride to ask my parents for money proved to be a real downer on my wardrobe choices. I started to see my lack of designer clothes as a reason I wasn’t good enough. Something I still struggle with today and the reason I’m so strongly pulled to help other women caught in this trap.

What I’ve learned over time is that everything we do–including getting dressed–is linked to how we feel about ourselves. How we feel about ourselves is linked to how connected we feel to our true purpose. If you asked me seven years ago if spirit and style had anything to do with each other, I would’ve been hesitant. I felt there was a connection but I couldn’t explain it. Today, I can tell you, it’s an absolute yes. Believe it or not, we’re all here to be happy. We all don’t have to feel bad about not having enough money or fitting into a size 2. As a personal stylist, I tell my clients I will not talk about buying anything until we clean up any beliefs around not feeling good enough. That is at the root of most insecurities–it was for me. I know how self-sabotaging limiting beliefs can wreck personal style. Below I’m sharing three mindset shifts that can help turn that around. Stay tuned for more spiritually-guided fashion advice each month, but in the meantime…

I know this sounds like common knowledge but trust me when I tell you, you’re judging way more than you think. The best way to nip this in the bud is to take a little judgment inventory. For one day (or a few) make a note every time you have a negative thought about what someone wears, how they look, how much money they have (or don’t have)–all of it. But you must do this ONE thing while you’re taking inventory: You must NOT judge yourself, which as you will see, can be even worse. After you take note, let it go. You must forgive yourself because the part inside of you that is judging people isn’t who you really are. This is the most important part of my work, because all insecurities come down to how you feel about yourself. The judgments you have against yourself are the most damaging. It’s much easier to see how we have put them onto others in the beginning.

Seeing every other person in this world as one can be a little obtuse if you’re new to spiritual ideas. I find that telling myself “we’re all in this together” is easier to digest. We’re all humans. We all make mistakes and everyone is just trying to live their best lives. This has become a mantra that I say to myself when I feel the comparison monster show up–interestingly enough around the time I’m scrolling Instagram. It’s easy to compare ourselves to other people when we don’t know them, except for a few highlights we see online. This isn’t the full picture. Not even half of it. Remind yourself that everyone is human. We all are having the exact same insecurities, even Beyonce.

Yup, the gratitude talk. I know you have heard about gratitude lists but give this a try. At night, right before you fall asleep let the last thing you think about be gratitude. It will speed up your results. I promise. Getting into the mindset of gratitude before you sleep gets your mind attracting all kinds of positive thoughts that will take root during the night. The more you are grateful the better you feel and feeling great is the cornerstone to looking great.

“It all gets written here. The good, the bad and the judgements. It’s where I’m able to check myself before I wreck myself.”
“The oneness meditation on Gabby’s May Cause Miracles album always sets me straight.”
“How can I be grateful for all that I already have if I can’t see it in my closet? These hangers keep everything clean and simple. Putting time and energy into loving the pieces I already have makes me feel super grateful.”
“If you don’t feel good in your body, you won’t feel good no matter how much makeup or impeccable tailoring.”
“Sometimes we all need a kick in the ass. This is that, in book form. I wish I would have written it, it’s that good”

Join Jodi’s 7-Day Style Challenge That Begins Today Here