On our recent incentive trip we earned to Barcelona, I found myself at the opening cocktail party in a predicament most women find themselves. Someone else was wearing my dress: my friend, team member, mentee and gorg ladyboss Emily Paulson.
That night and the next day I got several questions that were a variation on this theme: “Weren’t you so disappointed someone else was wearing your dress?”
In a word, No. And four more, Not In The Least.
First of all, any time someone wears the same thing I do, it gives me a confidence boost. It tells me that someone else picked something that I thought was fab. So at least to that one other person, I have style. I thought it was the perfect choice for a Gaudi-themed party (which, by the way, celebrates the inventive, daring, flamboyant architecture that became the most famous and recognizable in Barcelona), and I love that Emily agreed.
Second, I don’t subscribe to the “Who Wore It Best” notion of life. We each wore it Our Best. This Alice + Olivia number showcased Emily’s long, lithe limbs, her curves and her perfectly curled hair that cascaded over the bodice. It accentuated my small waist and muscular (albeit much-shorter) legs, and the deep V neckline did wonders to elongate a shrimp like me.
But maybe the biggest reason I didn’t mind but instead embraced my doppelgänger with giggles and a hug, is because for the last ten years I’ve been working in a business where duplication is encouraged and celebrated because it’s required for success. When I help someone launch their own turn-key entrepreneurial venture, I tell her exactly how to do it—how to duplicate what I’ve done—and then it’s her job to execute. Of course she adds her own experience, style and flair to it, but she doesn’t have to reinvent the wheel. I want her to copy me. And because the more successful she is the more successful I am, I want her to outshine me.
What a gift this professional environment has been. Not one of competition and scarcity, but of nurturing, collaboration and abundance. Every day I work to help others build their own life-changing vehicle so they can duplicate or surpass my success if they want to. So they can, so to speak, wear the same dress too. And wear it Their Own Best.
I hope the next time you scan a room and see your outfit, I hope you go over to her and have a giggle and a hug, and celebrate finding someone who's just your style.