The Dressing Room Challenge Takes Trying On Clothes From A Negative Space To A Positive Experience

"Inspired me to write this plea to you ..."

Store fitting rooms can be a negative space for many people, so one woman has created the "dressing room challenge" to help people feel better during their experiences.

The concept is simple: When you go into a dressing room, you try and silence your inner self-critic, and focus on the positives. It is something that was created by Cleveland-based psychologist Dr. Susan Albers.

In a Facebook post introducing the challenge, the Eating Mindfully founder explains how she was inspired to create the dressing room challenge after a recent change room experience had an impact on her:

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"Today, I was in a dressing room. It inspired me to write this plea to you. In the dressing room, there were 2 young ladies looking in the full length hall mirror. As I shut the door, I could hear one of them say, 'In this, I look like a f-- --- --- (I don't care to repeat).' Dressing rooms aren't always a pleasant experience: wall-to-wall mirrors, unflattering lighting, and doors that barely shut. Trying on the wrong shape or color of clothing can cut deep into your self-esteem. I get it, ladies! My plea to you. Speak mindfully. 'No thank you' or 'pass' will do. Please remember that whether they are 6 or 60, everyone around you absorbs every word you say about your body. You are a role model about the words and phrases that are 'okay' to attach to women's bodies. Take what I call the 'Dressing Room Challenge' Don't let your inner critic enter the dressing room with you. Leave her behind. Have fun in there. Say something affirming to yourself. Or, if that is too difficult, try directing positive vibes to someone else. Whenever I see a stranger who is looking in the full-length mirror, and I genuinely like what she has tried on, I don't hesitate to tell her she looks absolutely amazing. And, that dress/jeans/shirt has her name written all over it. Watch her reaction. I invite you to do the same. This is me. Having fun in the dressing room. Join me." 

People love the concept, not only because it encourages you to be positive about your own body, but to help spread the love to strangers as well.

One Facebook user wrote, "Your words are a great reminder to us all as we go in and out of dressing rooms. Thank you!!"

Dr. Albers responded that she hears negative things being said in fitting rooms frequently and her intent is to change that.

"I hear these negative things from the next stall over almost every time I go into a dressing room," she stated. "Hopefully, that changes some day!!"

There have been other people who have turned their negative experiences of going into a dressing room into a positive one. Body positive blogger Constance Hall wrote a post about how she realized she was body shaming herself when she was in fitting rooms, while other people have called out strangers who have shamed them.

These posts and movements will hopefully help change fitting rooms so they are no longer perceived as intimidating spaces, but welcoming ones.

(H/T: Yahoo Style)

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