Dressing up the Dictionary: Discomfort

I wish I could say that a little bit of discomfort doesn't hurt, but it does. Well, that depends entirely on what we are talking about, in this case I am referring to human interactions. They have the propensity to make you feel so painfully uncomfortable. I have decided that I am going to take to task my approach on what comfort means to me. Just like you can’t have light without seeing the dark, you can't gauge what you're truly comfortable with without going through something uncomfortable.

It’s no secret I am a major introvert, as introverted as one can get basically. As a result it doesn't really come naturally to me to know how to be in social settings. I mean, I don't do stupid things in place of “normal” things, it’s that I don't know what to do at all. Legiterally I’m the kinda gal you'll find quietly observing a situation rather than getting all up in your face. Through interacting with new people lately I have learnt that my INFJ self has built a massive protective wall around me. I don't even put myself out there enough to feel any discomfort, perpetually living in a bubble of my own making. 

Seriously, how do I know for sure that the comfort I have been living with for 25 years is real when it could be because I have been protecting myself against the things that have brought me such discomfort in the past?… I mean, is it REALLY comfort or is it fear? To answer simply; it is largely fear based. I am afraid of being hurt, being rejected and not being liked. So what do I do to not feel those things? Just avoid any situation which may cause them. Obvs. 

Alas, that will be no longer. I have slowly but surely been putting myself out there, doing things I wouldn't ordinarily, even when it has sent me into internal anxiety overdrive. Through any discomfort I am seeing how valuable it is to hold myself in high esteem and understand my boundaries. That within itself is a challenge, because it forces me to see outside of my black and white thinking. Which leads me to this words look; an expression of what is comfort to me in all its monochrome glory. While I embark upon my journey to a grey space, I can at least outwardly project what I am comfortable in, right?


Dressing up the Dictionary: Identity

5ft 4, brown skin, mid-length dark hair, big eyes, slim(ish), resting bitch face with an air of ambiguity are some of the things that sum up my external identity. Who I am isn't just what you see on the surface, and that is something using social media has really got me thinking about. Instagram in particular creates this overall sense of “black and white,” only two very extreme versions of yourself are put on display - your image and what your selling through your image to all your followers. It begs the question, what happens to all that grey matter which makes up who you really are? 

Well, my grey matter is composed of being 24, diagnosed with Bipolar, a Muslim woman, South Asian, a sexual assault victim, a sister (of THREE brothers), an introvert, shy, quiet, anxiety ridden, hyper organised, a mental health advocate, a campaign assistant, list obsessed and so so much more. You don't get to see those things in photos, you probably wouldn't even guess it. Of course you can’t see these things duh, nonetheless, they make me who I am and effect how I choose to portray myself. Having worked in environments where identity was heavily scrutinised made taught me I don't need to focus in on just one aspect of who I am - for example being a Muslim woman - instead I want to explore my identity as a PERSON on a whole. 

Sharing my looks and my lifestyle isn't a matter of falsifying elements of my life. I tirelessly put tonnes of energy into what I put out there. Every image is tied to a mood, a feeling and a thought, all of which I set out to share with you through my writing. In that respect I am trying to set myself apart from the usual “look at me and my amazing life” set we see everywhere. My life isn't always amazing. I don't always look how I do on the days I shoot my looks. The days that aren't so great like when I am just running errands, working and even sometimes being incredibly lazy and watching too much Netflix, make me all the more grateful for those where I am doing what I love: writing, shooting my curated outfits and seeing it all come together on my blog. 

This weeks look is just one example of many to come, inspired by my thoughts on how identity is portrayed on social media. As the saying goes “nothing is ever black and white” hence this monochrome ensemble. I’m making my point, even down to the stitching in the garments everything is black and white. See, all that thought! Theres definitely always more than meets the eye. 

A. x

Shop the look:

  1. White Shirt Body, Zara - Similar here

  2. Trainers, Golden Goose Deluxe Brand

  3. Bag, Fendi

  4. Sunglasses, Fendi

  5. Libra Coin Necklace, Vanity and Rose

  6. Amelia Gold Necklace, Cinco Store

  7. Oval Ring, Annina Vogel

  8. Crown Ring, Annoushka

Photography by Hayley Ku'unani - Instagram @thoualone