Do you want to get out of debt? Do you want to get your house organized and have more control over your life? Do you want your family to respect you more than they do? Then get dressed!
I realize that for some people, like those with newborns and toddlers, this can be a challenge to say the least, but do what you can. At first it may mean only getting dressed during the baby’s first nap of the day, but keep working at it until you can comb your hair and put on your make-up.
Getting dressed may not seem important but it really is at the top of the list of things you can do to improve your life. I had a woman once tell me she never got dressed in the morning, but that she could do her housework just fine. This same woman in the next breath was bemoaning the fact she couldn’t get her family to help her or show her any respect. Take a good long look in the mirror at yourself and see what your family sees. Is it a woman perpetually dressed in pajamas or sweats, with hair sticking out all over and without any make-up? I know they are your family and are supposed to love you no matter how you look. They would never ever say anything to you because they do love you, but there is a difference between love and respect.
I know several women who never ever put on make-up or get dressed unless they are going to work or out someplace fancy. How do you think that makes their husbands and children feel? The message that a family receives is that they are not as important as the rest of the world. Many of these women wonder why their families don’t respect them! If your boss showed up each day to work in her pajamas, without make-up and combed hair and then proceeded to sit down at her cluttered desk before demanding that you keep your desk spotless, wear pantyhose and a skirt and keep your nails manicured, how would you feel? Would you respect her? Would you want to even introduce her to your friends? You might do what she says, but you wouldn’t respect her.
Do you think your husband and young children don’t notice how you present yourself? Do you remember as a young child seeing your mom all dressed up to go to church or out for the evening and being so proud of how beautiful she looked? If your mom never dressed up, do you remember seeing your friends moms and wishing yours looked like that? Children notice even the littlest things. One day, my 5 year old granddaughter hugged me and said “Nan, you and Great Grandma always smell so good!" Even something as small as using a little perfume makes an impression and leaves a lasting memory.
I’m sorry, but it’s a fact of life– you have to earn respect. The dictionary’s definition for earn is “to receive something for work done." The definition of work is “sustained physical or mental effort to overcome obstacles and achieve an objective or result." Translated, that means to get respect you will have to put forth some effort — sustained or continual effort, even when there are Legos — um I mean "obstacles" in your path.
One time I had to have major surgery. It was complicated by the fact I had a chronic illness and I was just plain worn out. The doctor insisted that I get some major rest. She told me that I was not to get out of my pajamas for three weeks. Why? Because once I got dressed, it was a signal for my friends and family that I was up to working again. Sure enough, the minute I slipped my clothes on, they were all over me. Now you may be reading this story and saying “If that’s the case, I’ll never get dressed again!” Trust me, I was tempted to stay in my pajamas for the rest of my life. But the point I’m trying to make is the way that you dress does send a signal — to your family and yourself.
If you have been neglecting this part of your life and have been frustrated with a general lack of cooperation from your family, could it be that you have been giving them mixed signals?
For more tips to make cleaning, laundry and homemaking easier, check out our Keeping It Clean e-books.