Alright, so maybe you're feeling a little down on yourself. Maybe you're not feeling as confident lately; Perhaps you think it involves your intelligence? Or some old clothes, bad haircut, or you've just never felt very confident in anything you've done. I've been there, and I have some personal advice. I can't guarantee that you'll take anything away from it, however, if you can take away anything please share it with anyone who may be struggling with similar problems.
I must include I have no intention for this to come across as self-help or self-righteous. I only wish to speak from the heart. Also, the end is more tailored for men because I am a man and only understand men fashion.
Tip 1 - Sharpen Your Mind
It is as Tyrion Lannister once said, "... a mind needs books as a sword needs a whetstone if it is to keep its edge."
― George R.R. Martin, A Game of Thrones
Anytime I start feeling down on myself I read. Nothing cures self-confidence issues like having a sharp mind with great wisdom. Not every book makes this happen, but that's why you should try and read difficult books or books that make you challenge your beliefs.
It really can make a difference, and if you're one of those people who hasn't picked up a book since 9th-grade English; There is still time. There is always time to love books. It's 2017, and we're over the books are for nerds bullshit.
Don't you want to be the person in the room that everyone stops talking to listen to when you speak? Well, I sure do. That's why I have compiled a list of books. There are some highly rated classics in here and a few non-popular books. All great reads, and available for purchase at Amazon!
- 1984 by George Orwell
- Animal Farm by George Orwell
- Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
- How Does It Feel to Be a Problem? by Moustafa Bayoumi
- I Am Malala by Christina Lamb & Malala Yousafzai
- Into the Wild by John Krauker
- The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd
- Let the Great World Spin: A Novel by Colum McCann
- A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier by Ishmael Beah
- Silent Spring by Rachel Carson
- Still Life with Woodpecker by Tom Robbins
- Walden and Other Writings by Henry David Thoreau
If you really can't get the willpower to crack open a book, then I suggest trying audio books.
There are other ways to sharpen your mind as well:
- Read/Listen to Public radio like NPR.
- Play brain-engaging activities like board games, chess, puzzles, brain apps.
Tip 2 - Take Care of Your Body
Let's start off with water, which many do not appreciate as much as they should. Water is great because it helps maintain your body's natural balance of fluids, promotes weight loss (cravings & substituting for sugary drinks), helps your body with fatigue and re-energizes muscles, improves quality and look of skin, flushes out toxins and helps bowel movements.
Those are only a few great things that water does for you, but it's enough to know that you should be drinking enough water every day.
Along with water, I always notice an improvement in my skin, hair, and attitude after consistently taking my multivitamins. You can get simple multivitamins at any grocery store.
Next, exercise should be prevalent in your schedule. Most people look at exercise as a negative thing. Don't get me wrong; I will agree that one to two hours in the gym lifting weights or doing cardio can turn people away from exercise including me.
However, the biggest problem is that most people are giving up before they even get to see progress. I started lifting my first fall semester of college; I gained about 15 pounds of muscle by spring!
This sort of visible progress takes about a month to see. And if you don't lift weights, I strongly recommend you start. Especially, if cardio isn't your thing or if you don't exercise often.
From my experience lifting weights is easier, less tiring, more efficient and more fun. Plus, It is a lot simpler and quicker to see progress as compared to cardio and less of a hassle.
However, if that's not your thing, exercise in other ways like hiking, or playing sports. Stay active because it will improve your brain function and keep you fit.
And if you're interested in shedding the pounds and becoming more muscular I recommend looking into HIIT Cardio or High-Intensity Interval Training.
HIIT is the most efficient way to exercise while doing cardio. It's a shorter, harder, more fast paced workout style that always leads to promising results AS LONG AS you are eating right.
Tip 3 - Hygiene
This tip might seem like common sense, but nevertheless, it's important. I'm not talking about showering regularly or changing your clothes. I want to put emphasis on the things that we frequently forget.
Let's start with body hair, if you have facial hair that is patchy or untidy, I'm not saying you should shave it, but just trim it!
If you are unsure how to trim or shave a beard that is appealing to the eye, I strongly suggest looking this sort of thing up on Pinterest.
If you're someone who thinks Pinterest is only for women, you shouldn't let other people's opinions define you. It's a dog eat dog world out there. Take advantage of the opportunities out there for you. Pinterest contains tremendous amounts of knowledge for this sort of thing. Not to mention, taking style advice from Pinterest will put you ahead of the game every time.
Don't let my writing confuse you because you should never change for anyone. But it is okay to go outside your comfort zone and try new styles or clothes. It's a trial and error process.
It should come down to your style and preferences. You should be honest and realistic with yourself about what is obtainable at the current time and what isn't. But, hey if you love that neck beard and it makes you feel good then rock the hell out of it.
Next, you should try and do your research on face acne and dry skin. I refuse to touch, pop, scratch or mutilate any acne because unless you do it correctly, it can make it 100 times worse. Seriously, I would just stop altogether, unless you have some severe cases, I can't speak on that.
One day with a ball of pus is better than ten days with a bloody scab. Plus, it's a natural thing your body does. It can deal with it in its own time. Word of advice: zits and pimples are here until the weekend, scars are forever.
Make sure you're washing your face every night and morning. Everyone is different, but the point is that you may have great and easy skin to take care of, and you have simply been doing it wrong.
Properly hydrating your face after a hot shower with some non-irritating face lotion could be your answer to all your struggles. If you're a teenager reading this, you might just need time. Genetics can be a cruel and painful struggle in some aspects, but I promise time fixes most problems.
Maybe try and experiment with different bar soaps and face hydrating products until you can find the perfect balance. Plus you can find great and unique smells that help your appeal, which brings me to my next point.
SMELLS. Seriously, nothing is sexier than a man or woman who smells great. It doesn't have to be $100 cologne from Ralph Lauren either.
If you do some research, you can get great smelling cologne from places like Walmart or Target. I am not saying that expensive cologne is a rip-off. Take some time and research what goes into cologne and the crafting of it, it's great stuff. But, I know $100 for a bottle of something you don't know the smell of is risky. So, start with the cheap stuff.
Most women already know this but, for the men out there, you can use other products besides cologne. For the men, you can get aftershave for less than ten dollars. In essence, it's cologne for your face, plus if you're going for the 1930's grandfather smell–like I am–there is plenty of products available for you.
Don't try to put too much on your face because its alcohol and can easily dry out your face. I suggest pouring some out on your palm and letting it air out for 5-10 seconds. You can put dabs behind your ears and under your chin.
If you aren't insecure about your masculinity, there is always great smelling men tailored body lotion; Bath and Body Works has a great line of male-targeted lotions that smell like cologne and give you smooth skin as a bonus!
If you're not afraid to spend the money, interested in the grandfather effect smell, and looking for something unique, you might be interested in a solid cologne. I have never tried any of these individually, but it's a few popular brands that Amazon has:
- Drifter Men's Solid Cologne by ulio&jack .5oz Travel Friendly Tin
- The Gambler Solid Cologne
- O'Douds - Natural Solid Cologne (Heritage & Tobacco Rum)
- Solid Cologne - Sturgis | Detroit Grooming Company
- Walton Wood Farm The Adventurer 2.5 Oz Men's Solid Cologne
Tip 4 - Style
As far as fashion advice goes here are a few quick guidelines you should always follow. If you're looking for a more in-depth version of these rules I will search Pinterest:
- Match Accessories - shoes match your belt, leathers are same color, etc
- Simplify and loosen up - A t-shirt under an open denim shirt, and some khakis can look marvelous in all situations.
- Understand colors, and how to wear them. For example, not clashing your shirt and pants: ex. Denim shirt and denim jeans.
- Wearing desaturated colors and sticking with earthy tones is always a safe bet.
- Search fashion tips, trends, etc. on Pinterest and take hints from their style.
A style isn't something that is right or wrong. It's about how you wear it and feel while wearing it. If it's a very new concept to you, that's okay. Start slow and work your way up to wearing more risky trends.
Finally, we're going to talk about hair. First off, if you're not going to a salon or barbershop, then I suggest you start. I used to be someone who went to SportClips for all my haircuts. I don't want to demean anyone, but they simply don't understand anything besides short bangs and a fade.
I am telling you, go to a barber. It costs almost the same, and you'll receive a high-quality haircut from someone who understands the latest trends and is qualified to do them.
So, your hair is cut, what's next? Here is the answer: hair product. Simple and cheap styling cream, pomade, or wax is offered at your local drug or grocery store. I understand it can be intimidating, but the payoff is tremendous.
If you're unsure what hairstyle to wear or product to buy, I suggest figuring out your face shape and hairstyle. Pinterest contains hundreds of tips and diagrams. From here, you can then figure out how to cut it and what product to purchase.