Fashion Entrepreneur Podcast

Fashion Originators

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Hi.

Welcome to Fashion Originators, a podcast hosted by me, Stephanie Irwin. Every other week, I interview game-changing fashion entrepreneurs. Each episode, THEY share their wins, losses and wisdom – all to inspire your career and personal goals.

10 ways introversion has helped my fashion career #motivationmonday

10 ways introversion has helped my fashion career #motivationmonday

10 ways introversion has helped my fashion career…

Originally published on Pepper Your Talk

It is often said that ‘Introversion will harm your fashion career.’ After all, fashion is known for its fancy parties (MET Gala anyone?) and flamboyant personalities (who doesn’t love Jeremy Scott?).

As a result of believing this stereotype for many years, I had always thought that the fashion industry just wasn’t for me. However, this all changed once I gained a deeper understanding of what introversion really is.

In this Huffington Post article, the author of The Introvert’s Way: Living a Quiet Life in a Noisy World, explains how introversion is less about disliking social situations, and more about the energy one gains or loses while around others.

What does this mean? Put simply, extroverts recharge within intense social situations, whereas introverts need alone-time instead. While networking and communicating have been central to my fashion industry successes, being aware of my own desire for space has been even more empowering – here’s why.

 

1.   You’re more self-aware

Because I’m aware of my own introversion, I always allot time to think. Whether it’s 10 minutes in the hallway with my Headspace app, or a stroll alone at lunch, I make extra effort to be conscious of my mind and body.

 

2.   You take the time to listen

When I need a break from social interaction, but I’m in a social situation, I just sit back and listen. As much as people enjoy jokes, I think they enjoy someone who listens even more.

 

3.   You notice the little things

Because I take space for myself at work, I often notice small errors that get overlooked by others. Whether it’s a tiny error on a spreadsheet or missing samples, being quiet and observant can save company cash in the long run.

 

4.   You can cope with isolating work

As a fashion intern, I often ran errands around London alone – all day. While I had a splendid time, the extroverted interns found the work incredibly frustrating.

 

5.   You’re less likely to burn out

While some industry professionals go to parties six nights a week, I choose to attend a few instead. As a result, I show up to the most important events on my A-game. With the extra nights per week, I can even make time for side projects.

 

6.   You come up with better ideas

When I’m quiet and alone, I always come up with great ideas. When I was on the plane from Vancouver to London a few months ago, I devised the concept for my podcast, Fashion Originators.

 

 

7.   You can relate to ‘non-fashion types’ in the office

As fashion and technology continue to merge, the fashion office and the tech office have also merged. Through working in fashion-tech, I have found my introversion useful in communicating with people who aren’t uber-social fashionistas.   

 

8.   You can see the bigger picture

Instead of getting caught up in office gossip, introversion has allowed me to focus more on the bigger goals of my career– rather than who doesn’t like who.

 

9.   You’re more selective with friends

Because I’m selective in who I choose to spend time with, I have built deeper friendships as a result. While it’s great to network and have a lot of acquaintances, my real friends have been the most helpful in advancing my career.

 

10.                You ask better questions (when you do talk – of course)

As a product of being observant, the questions I ask are smaller in number but deeper in nature. In having this policy, I’ve found that my bosses really listen whenever I do ask a question.

 

While I find these points empowering, I want to make one thing clear – extroversion and introversion aren’t ‘good’ or ‘bad’, ‘harmful’ or ‘harmless.’ Rather, it’s self-awareness that will allow you to thrive within the ebbs and flows of this crazy industry we call fashion. 

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