At Untapped Brilliance, I am a strong believer in the importance of looking after your physical health to help your ADHD symptoms. An ADHD friendly diet, exercise, taking omega 3 supplements and drinking water are some of the key components. When those things have become part of your life, you can turn your attention to your physical appearance.
A first impression is created in approximately three seconds. One… two… three… impression created! In that tiny amount of time your appearance, body language and mannerisms are all pieced together to form that impression. Aft
er that it can take hundreds of hours for that impression to be changed. With odds like these, it’s important that that first impression is a good one.
Now you might be thinking, “But that is so shallow.” It might seem that way, but you do it too when you meet a new person. It’s one of our survival strategies that allows us to function effectively in the world
Impressions are being created all the time – at work, socially and romantically. They help you get a job and the salary you want. They help you get respect with your peers and with strangers. They help you to get a first date and a second one.
When you are living with ADHD it is easy to focus on the logistical details, such as arriving on time and remembering all the important items for a meeting. It can be easy to think, ‘No one will be looking at me,’ and grab the nearest shirt from the pile of clothes by your bed. However, looks and logistics are important.
How you look not only affects how other people view you, it also affects how you feel about yourself, which is arguably the most important thing of all.
What we look like on the outside can affect our moods, productivity and general well-being.
One of my friends has had bouts of clinical depression throughout his life. During one particularly dark time, he decided to get his hair cut. It had reached his shoulders, and he would go for days without washing it. After getting a short back and sides from his local barber he made a personal commitment to wash his hair every day. He believes it was a catalyst that helped lift his depression. He still washes his hair every day, even when he doesn’t feel like it , and says this habit is just as important to his well-being as the medical care he gets from his doctors.
How to look on the outside also affects your performance.
In her book, “Big Magic”, author Elizabeth Gilbert says when she gets writer’s block, she heads to the bathroom. She washes her hair, shaves her legs, exchanges her pj’s with nice clothes, applies lipstick and sprays perfume even though she rarely uses either and then gets back to writing. She explains it works every time. When she sits back at her desk she is able to write effortlessly.
It is easy to think, ‘I won’t bother today because no one will see me,” but you will know!
In an interview, a popular radio presenter was asked what she did to prepare herself for her daily radio show. Besides things that you would expect, such as read through the show notes , she cleans her teeth. Even though she isn’t physically near the 1000’s of listeners tuning in to her show, she acts as if they were sitting right next to her.
Your physical appearance and how you feel about yourself are very much connected. It is much easier to take care of yourself when you are feeling confident. However, why wait? If you make some upgrades to your physical appearance now, it will start a nice ripple effect. You will look and feel sharper, people will sense that and respond to you differently. Your performance will improve, which will make you feel successful and feel inspired to make another physical upgrade.
You don’t have to give yourself a huge makeover all at once. That might feel stressful and hard to maintain. Instead, pick one action that will have the biggest impact on you. It could be a trip to the hairdresser like my friend, or a new habit of getting dressed every day even if no one will see you. Then when you feel ready, pick your next upgrade.
Here are 3 articles that will help you with the logistical aspects of your physical appearance.
What is your first physical upgrade going to be? Let me know in the comments below!