Sunday, July 10, 2011

How To Upgrade Yourself Without Really Trying

I'm a funny girl, I don't cook at all yet I love to watch the show "Barefoot Contessa with Ina Garten" Besides loving Ina and her wonderful recipes I watch her show to see what kind of cookware she uses, how to arrange gorgeous flowers, where she likes to shop for linens, what did she get from Williams Sonoma. I make a mental list in my head and try to acquire them slowly over time.  By watching her show, this is one way of upgrading myself.

Now back up;  I'm a daughter of an immigrant parent from a middle class background. But I have a very particular father who's a bit...snobby really. He always told me, doesn't matter what your background is, you can always upgrade yourself by learning, a higher education or a great job or marriage if you're lucky. I didn't really understand all this talk when I was 13 but now at 29 I certainly do.

Unfortunately not everyone is born into a wealthy family filled with all the finer things in life. Most of us are from regular, normal, middle class families with normal stuff which we buy from bodegas or from Sears. But as part of the Y generation and with the help of internet, traveling, and meeting all sorts of people; we can definitely try to upgrade ourselves from our parents' generation.

1. Ya need to read and research. Now I'm not a studious type at all but you really need to go on the internet or library and read about whatever that interests you. Fashion, interior design, pilates, cooking, whatever it may be. So make it a habit to read that book or research online or reading someone's blog daily.

2. Subscribe to a few good magazines. Vanity Fair and Town Country might be a little too much but you can subscribe to New York magazine, Better Homes and Garden, Lucky and Instyle, Travel and Leisure, and Bon Appetite or Cooks Illustrated. The more you read these typesof magazine the more you are open to a world of the great things you enjoy.

3. Go window shopping in an affluent neighborhood. Sure you can't afford to buy the stuff in these stores but it gives you ideas for your next project or shopping trip. You can purchase similar things from Target, Nordstrom, Amazon, and so on. If you can treat yourself to it, than go for it! Who doesn't like a nice set of wine glasses from Williams Sonoma or that YSL lipstick or Coach bag or the new Tivo. (my husband has his eyes on that so we'll have to save for that)

4. Finally, step out of your comfort zone and go out and meet new people! Yes, it can be daunting but when you meet new people you have a chance of learning new things, and who knows what you'll chat about. My father always said, that no matter what kind of person you meet, there is at least one thing you can learn from him or her. Whether it's about wine, cars, jewelry, interior design, skiing, etc there is always something new you can learn and once again upgrade your knowledge in that area. What else is a great way to upgrade yourself by meeting people?

Just because you weren't born into well off, classy, family that doesn't mean you can't learn and evolve. Remember, you can learn anything with a bit of effort!