Mock me all you want, but I am obsessed with the style of Her Royal Highness Princess William, Duchess of Cambridge, Countess of Strathearn, Baroness Carickfergus.
She’s otherwise known as Kate Middleton, or that girl whose wedding was made way too much of a big deal.
To wit, I realize royalty in this day and age is a silly holdover from days of yore when democracy was a four-letter word. I also realize all the hullabaloo over any royal family is both outdated and overdone.
But hey, the girl can dress.
Ultimately though, I like to follow the Duchess’ style not because I think I’m going to marry Prince Harry (no matter how much I joke around about it), and not because I believe in fairy tales, but because looking at sharply and elegantly dressed people motivates me.
It motivates me to hurry and finish my degree so I can get a real job where I walk around in pretty shoes and professional clothes, not baggy denim and wrinkled sweaters.
It sounds silly and shallow, and maybe it is. But whenever the end-of-semester doldrums dampen the wind in the sails of productivity, whenever my to-do list piles higher than Pine Valley Mountain, and whenever my instinct is to curl up in bed and let the world go by because it’s just too hard, I sneak a peek at my Pinterest board of ever-so-stylish women like the Duchess of Cambridge.
Of course, other notable women on my board include Rachel Berry, Lt. Uhura, and the greatest heroine of them all: Hermione Granger.
Looking at what I consider strong women, even if they’re fictional, motivates me to emulate them. It motivates me to cut the crap and get over myself, so I can actually accomplish something worthwhile.
And these motivations change for everyone. It sounds cliché, but finding role models who embody characteristics you want to exemplify makes your goals so much more attainable.
Want to be a runner? Look up videos of Usain Bolt breaking world records and winning Olympic gold. Yeah, you’ll probably do neither of those things, but that’s the point of a role model.
You look at them, and think to yourself, “If they can do that, then I can totally do this.”
I will never marry wearing Sarah Burton by Alexander McQueen, sing on Broadway, work on the bridge of the Enterprise, or save the world, but I can get myself to a better place by internalizing the chief characteristics of my heroes.
One of the most common clichés I hear as a writer is that to write well, you have to read well. Well, to do anything well, you have to find what has already been done well in that field.
That means finding who the go-getters are, who the name-makers are, and who the forerunners are, so you can analyze what made them the best and apply that to your own attempts. That, along with practice, is really the only way to ever improve and excel.
Yes, this may sound cheesy and trite, but when I’m on the balcony of Buckingham Palace with my new hubby waving at all you plebes, I’ll be darn glad I figured this trick out early on.