Throughout the work week we’re confronted with thousands of decisions, both big and small; whether its choosing between #0099FF and #3399FF, or deciding to entirely change careers. With every decision you make, you’re using up the finite supply of mental energy allocated to you each day. These taxing decisions are referred to by experts as decision fatigue.
According to Roy F. Baumeister, co-author of Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength, the act of making decisions for work uses the same willpower you use to say no to things like fatty foods; even drugs or illicit sex. This too affects your ability to choose the proper colour scheme for a design, or hire the right person; all because you’ve used too much of your willpower before getting to work. Or in this case, wrestling with the choice of what to wear every day.
Statistics have shown an average woman between the ages of 6 and 60 will spend roughly 287 days going through her wardrobe. In fact, men clock in an average of 13 minutes daily; this compared to the average women at 10 minutes/day. So, if you think of time and energy as a commodity, choosing what to wear each day seems counterproductive.
It works for some people; Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, Albert Einstein, and Barack Obama have been known wear the same outfit every day. To simplify things, my previous Creative Director at The Backroom Agency would wear a black hat, shirt, pants and shoes every day; no matter the weather. A recent overnight sensation for wearing the same outfit every day for a year, is Sweden-based art director, Matilda Kahl.
In an interview with Adweek, she reflects on the power of her work uniform:
“I understood how much time and energy I’d save if I could just take out the clothing aspect. We have so many great creative challenges at Saatchi that I’d rather spend my time on that; not picking out a new outfit every morning,” says Matilda. “It’s not until you don’t have to care about clothing anymore that you realize how much energy it actually took up before.“
Though not a new concept; a capsule wardrobe takes the idea of wearing the same thing every day and gives you the freedom to express yourself. It’s about what makes you feel confident. Gaining confidence with how you dress will influence your day. It will also impact your prospects, your personality, and the way the world perceives you.
Daniel is an Art Director and Graphic Designer with over a decade of experience in advertising and marketing in the Greater Toronto Area.