Before I begin, let me just say...pay no attention to the man crossing the street. You can tell he's obviously RUSHING to get in the picture, but I just didn't think he put enough thought into his outfit! Seriously, I didn't even notice him until I just started to type! Hey, I'm doing good just to get an outside picture to begin with. I had someone ask me how many pictures I took to get the ones that I will post. Honestly, for most all of my posts, I take no more than 2 pictures and hope that I can make them work for the blog. My main requirement is that the outfit is clearly seen and I look presentable. I'm battin' it outta the park, eh?
Terri of Rags Against the Machine (I don't think there's anyone reading this that doesn't know and love Terri! This woman is someone who I would love to just sit and chat with for an entire afternoon of coffee and goodies!), asked me yesterday if I learned any grooming tips from being in the Army. I got out of the Army in 1990, so I've been out 21 years! Even as I type this, I can hardly believe it! The military taught me alot, actually; and yes, even some grooming tips. So, "AT EASE!" and see if you can use (or already use) any of these:
Nail Polish - A really nice female sergeant told me one time that nail polish needed to be all on or all off. If it starts chipping, it needs to come off immediately. Chipped nail polish looks neglectful and can detract from an otherwise polished look. This has stayed with me, and I get really antsy if my polish starts chipping!
Ironing - To be honest, I've never minded ironing. When I was a little girl visiting my mom, one of my favorite pastimes was to iron. I would iron pillow cases, shirts, and even underwear when there was nothing left. It seemed like magic to me to be able to "erase" the wrinkles! So when I joined the military, ironing was not a foreign or dreaded concept. Wrinkles DON'T look good. EVER. And if your uniform wasn't pressed you would possibly get gigged, OR you just weren't regarded as seriously as a soldier.
Look Sharp - Fair or not fair, appearances matter. How we groom ourselves speaks volumes. When I went before the promotion board, they looked to see if I was put together. If I took care with my appearance. It mattered to the officers on the promotion board because it reflected on the kind of soldier that I was. I still believe the care I take to put myself together reflects on the respect I have for myself and others.
Attention to Detail - In the military, there is a certain way that everything is to be worn. When a badge or hat was askew, we would hear, "ATTENTION TO DETAIL, PRIVATE!!!" In grooming as a civilian, this is still true.... a missing button, an unmended tear or rip, pockets that bulge and the list goes on. These seemingly small imperfections actually seem to draw EVERYONE'S eye and spoil an overall look. It casts a shadow on a great look. The Army taught me to pay attention to the details of my grooming.
Posture - This is such a big one and one that I STILL work on to this day. You can pull off almost any look if you push those shoulders back, lift that chin and look people in the eye. Contrarily, slouching and shuffling tends to make everything look unkempt. Hetty King in Adventures of Avonlea (did you guys ever read or watch Anne of Green Gables?! I love the books and movies!) used to have her students chant:
and as hokey and old fashioned as that may be, it's a GREAT way to carry yourself!
The Army was something I didn't appreciate until I was already out. But I continue to surprise myself with so many things that have just stuck, even after 21 years!