Oct 09 2019
No! I am not talking about being in or out of fashion. I am asking you if you have an Introvert or an Extrovert personality.
I learnt from Marti Olsen Laney that Introverts are 25 percent of the population and Extroverts the other 75 percent. That is just statistics and you could be any combination along that line.
As an Introvert, you are not shy. Most Introverts do not like being over-stimulated as the mainly Extrovert world tends to be. You prefer peaceful, deep, one-on-one conversations and you are happiest when you are listening, observing, thinking things through in your mind and generally working behind the scenes. Like most Introverts I know, you are not one who likes to stand out. That is why you prefer to wear black, neutrals and soft colours and dress in classic-styled clothes.
I am not asking you to change and become an Extrovert. We love you as you are.
There are some situations in life when you have to step into the spotlight and it is then that you need to learn how to comfortably move from an Introvert to a Functioning Extrovert for a short while.
From Introvert to Functioning Extrovert
Your usual colours and styles are great for learning more about a topic or person. When it is time to get out and meet new people, train others or speak on a stage, this low-key approach to dressing can result in you being overlooked, forgotten or not taken seriously.
Please ignore those Extroverts who try to force a dramatic change on you. It will not work for you. Just lift yourself up a small level.
Here are three Functioning Extrovert dressing tips for business and professional women over 40.
Start out Small
Wear a slightly unusual or different necklace, scarf or brooch. These are good props. They are people attractors and conversation starters. For you, the Introvert, they take the pressure off you to start a conversation. When speaking, they keep the Extroverts' attention and help them concentrate on what you are saying.
Aim for a Medium Colour Contrast
This is a better look than your preferred low contrast style. Make sure that you can clearly see the difference between the colours you wear. If you like wearing all black or dark neutrals, add a top or jacket that is basically black but also includes some lighter neutrals (eg cream) or some other colours in it. Soft turquoise, peach or chambray blue with a neutral-coloured skirt or pants will attract more of the Extroverts to you while still being true to your soft and gentle nature.
Wear Rich Colours
Raspberry, plum or deep purple are rich colours that align with your natural desire to have rich and deep rather than superficial conversations and experiences. Rich colours look great when worn with lighter rich colours like cream or camel. Do not pair them with black unless you can really see the difference between the two colours. A very rich but not too out there dressing tip for Introvert business and professional women is to wear a milk or dark chocolate skirt or pants teamed with a rich brown and white (or cream) patterned, modern crossover top. Introverts will admire this combination and Extroverts will love it. Men love women in rich colours - it speaks to them of refinement and elegance.
Gentle Introverts of the world, lift yourself just a little. After the event, find somewhere to sit to give yourself a people-break. Then you can quietly reflect on the experience.