Someone once said “Who doesn't love a makeover? Even my husband watches 'What Not to Wear.’”
Well, you may not watch What Not to Wear on TLC, but that does not mean you should not look at your appearance and how you present yourself to voters. You may need a modest makeover.
Yeah we know, you are going to the be the candidate of substance, issue oriented, blah, blah, blah. Good for you, but now let us give you a little advice.
Talking to voters is akin to courting. That old fashion concept where we try to “woo” a romantic partner. So how would you dress on your first and second date? Most voters are not going to give you a third date.
So you are courting voters. Basically, you are selling a product: You. Yes, your message is the key product but if people are distracted by the messenger’s appearance, then no one is going to listen to you. This doesn’t mean you need to have the body of Ms. or Mr. Olympia, walk the cat walk in Milan or wear $2,000 tailored suits and dresses; but your clothes need to fit, hair cut, etc. Grooming matters. Don’t let your appearance distract people from your important message.
So what do you do?
- Clothes. Make sure they fit. Even buying off the rack -- which most of us do – does not mean you can not find a tailor and have them reconfigure your clothes to fit a little better for your body type. God made us all unique – that includes our body types. These clothes should be comfortable. You will be in them a lot.
- Iron Your Clothes. If you can’t find time to iron your clothes, then use a dry cleaner. Especially for debates and public appearances.
- Weight. If you are overweight, get on a treadmill and start eating healthier. Once had a candidate who knew he was going to run for Congress and knew his weight was an issue. So every night, six days a week, he was on a treadmill walking for one hour. He lost 50 pounds over 9 months. He felt better, he looked better and everyone commented on it. He was in it to win. He went from 30% down at the start to losing by just 4 votes. People noticed and took him seriously.
- What Color Looks Best on You? Seems like a silly question, but some colors help us look healthy and rested; others drained and fatigued. Ask your significant other and family.
- “What Your Clothes Say About You.” You can get further insights from this Forbes article: https://www.forbes.com/sites/learnvest/2012/04/03/what-your-clothes-say-about-you/#19fd8c426699
- Smile. Always wear a smile, smiles are contagious. It will always make you easier to approach. People vote based on likeability.