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Are you returning to the office after lockdown? Here are some great tips to look and feel your best before transitioning back to pre-quarantine life.

Returning to the Office? Here’s How to Look and Feel More Put-Together

Just like any skill, the skill of looking polished, confident and put together takes constant practice. As the world opens up again and many people return to their offices after more than a year of working from home, we may be starting to find that we have lost touch with this skill.

No matter what field you work in, presenting yourself in a way that reflects self-assurance and expertise affects the way that people perceive you and by extension your competence in your job. Continue reading for 8 tips on looking and feeling more put together when you return to the office. 

Establish Your Own Morning Routine

Coming across as professional and put together is as much about how you act as how you present yourself. Starting off your day on the wrong foot can leave you feeling stressed and overwhelmed, and those internal feelings can easily be projected onto your exterior. 

Establishing a morning routine that allows you to feel calm and secure before you start your day will help with this issue. Also, figuring out a morning routine will ensure that you have enough time to take care of your appearance before you head out to work. 

After a year of Zoom or Microsoft Teams meetings, you may have lost touch with your pre-commuting morning routine. Some suggestions to incorporate into your morning routine:

  • making time to eat a healthy breakfast
  • practicing meditation
  • going to the gym or for a walk
  • drinking tea or coffee if you enjoy them
  • reading 
  • taking a shower and all of your regular grooming practices

Stand Up Straight

It doesn’t matter how well-dressed and presentable you are, if you shrink away from people and avoid eye contact, they will not perceive you as confident, which is likely to mean that they don’t perceive you as competent either. Developing healthy posture is also better for your body in the long run especially if you work at a desk. 

Wear Clothes that are Comfortable and Fit Properly

Nothing undermines how confident and put together you seem like constantly fiddling with jacket sleeves that are an inch too short or rearranging pants with an uncomfortable rise. While you don’t have to wear sweatpants or pajamas, ensuring that your work outfits are comfortable enough not to fidget with them all day long will increase how professional others perceive you to be. 

Style Your Hair (At Least) 

In the era of going straight from your bed to your laptop for a morning zoom meeting, your haircare routine may have fallen by the wayside. However, regardless of your gender, having well-kept, well-groomed hair can make a huge difference in pulling together all the loose ends of your appearance. “Lightly styling your hair, even if that’s just as simple as combing it smooth or pulling it into a quick ponytail, is a great way to do this,” says Pam Florig of Folicure Dallas Hair Replacement Company  

Keep a Lint Roller and a Stain Remover Pen in Your Bag

There’s nothing that can trample on your momentum quite like realizing your jacket is covered in cat hair or spilling coffee on your shirt. To be prepared for this kind of situation, keep a stain remover pen and a lint roller in your bag (or your glovebox, or your desk), which you can get from just about any grocery store. 

Learn Some Quick Breathing Exercises

When stress starts to mount in the office, being able to get your breathing under control will help you come across as calm and collected, even if everyone else is cracking under the pressure. Learning a few quick breathing exercises that you can do at your desk, in the elevator, or during a bathroom break is a good idea so that you have something to turn to during these moments. One great breathing exercise for grounding yourself is square breathing, or sama vritti pranayama, a type of yogic breathing that translates to equal breathing in sanskrit. To practice square breathing, first exhale to empty your lungs. Then, breathe in for a count of four. Hold at the top for four, exhale for four, hold at the bottom for four, and repeat. 

Pay Attention to the Details

Excellent personal grooming is all in the details. Putting a little bit of effort into these small details can go a long way as far as boosting your confidence too. For example, paying attention to how your eyebrows are groomed, wearing a little spritz of perfume, cologne, or some essential oils, or making sure that your shirt is wrinkle-free will all go a long way.

Wear Your Favorite Pieces of Clothing for A Confidence Boost 

Wearing your favorite pieces of clothing or accessories is a great way to boost your confidence, especially if you are feeling uncertain about being back in the office again for the first time. This can be as simple as a tie that you really like, or your favorite pair of shoes. 

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