Dress up not to impress, but to inspire

This is part 7 where I give myself 5 minutes each day to delve in deeper on the22 life learnings after 7 days at burning man.


Wear costumes not to peacock, but to bring smiles and inspiration to others.

If anyone knows me, I am THAT guy. That guy who has never dressed up for Halloween, and refused to whenever someone thought they could convince me. Raised as a Christian, I was taught at a young age to not participate in these costume occasions. And throughout the years, it became more natural for me to just skip these and find an excuse anytime someone begged me.

And as I grew more natural to this, I would assume many people who dressed up just wanted to peacock.

Peacock (verb): display oneself ostentatiously; strut like a peacock.

I mean, who wouldn’t want to draw attention to themselves during these rare occasions? It would be a great way for people of the opposite gender to hit on you. I remember there would be times I would be tempted to test this hypothesis. And I would shake it off, challenging myself to do it another way. (Nothing against the above— just how I felt).

When it came to Burning Man this year, I finally I would purchase costumes for the first time and dress up. I had no justified reason but to just have an open mind. I bought a couple crazy art leggings, panda onesie, nice patterned scarf, gnarly looking googles, and an awesome hoodie (without the sleeves).

And without any hesitation for the first time in my life, I decided to just rock them however way I felt. It was liberating. But more importantly, when I started walking around and people started complimenting on the “eccentric” wardrobe, the smile they emitted was what inspired me. It made me realize that I, my body, could be a blank canvas. What I wear on this canvas can inspire others.

More particularly, inspire them to be their youthful selves and just play more, not afraid of what rules there are on how to dress up. Maybe, just maybe, they will be able to remember to be their Peter Pan and with their innocent beings, be able connect with others in a beautiful way.

Being a newbie in this costume world, I would hope that is the case. And if you’re hesitant to costume up like I was, treat your body as a blank canvas waiting to be dressed so it can inspire others to bring out their inner child. We can all use a little bit more of that in this world :).