Newsletter Article (NITP)

“People…perform more creatively when they feel good”

-Donald A. Norman

Clothing anxiety affects millions. People equate wardrobe with self-worth, or they resent their inability to buy the latest styles or multiple pairs of jeans. Meanwhile the bombardment of advertising promising life-changing fashion miracles never ends.

Children are especially susceptible to advertising and social pressures to conform. Clothing anxiety decreases their academic performance, as feelings of inadequacy increase. Children who lack proper clothing for school are higher-risks for this anxiety because they already feel socially deficient. Schoolyard teasing about clothing further reduces self-esteem, which can fall to critical levels in some children.
Research into the psychology of clothing studied how humans function under the mental stress from the reaction of their internal perspectives toward external stimuli. In other words, how we decode the symbolism of clothing affects our judgment, and the positive or negative reaction to these feelings alters how well we perform on immediate tasks.

However, in 2014, three scholars from The Ohio State University presented an assessment of the effectiveness of digital fabrication when customizing personal items like clothing (shoes, safety helmets), accessories (music earbuds), medical devices (casts), etc. They cited multiple studies showing how positive feelings about one’s clothing have positive effects on cognition.

Author, Donald A. Norman’s research found, “People…perform more creatively when they feel good” (Norman 2005). French sociologist, Jean Baudrillard, noted, “…products that we use…portray an image of who we are and reflect our internal propensity” (Baudrillard 2006). American psychologist, Alice M. Isen, wrote, “…even low-level general feeling states that are caused by small things can have remarkable effects on our social behavior and cognitive processes” (Isen 1984).

The ability to create positive feelings means local children do not have to suffer clothing anxiety.

Note in the Pocket (NITP) is an organization removing the negative-stress barriers to learning by working to properly outfit lower-resourced and homeless schoolchildren. NITP collects clothing donations and creates simple wardrobes of like-new clothing for children in need. NITP then delivers these personalized wardrobes to the children of families identified as candidates for NITP’s assistance by local schools and community services.

Children’s memories, attention, and focus naturally improve without the distraction of appearance anxiety, as do grades and test scores. Your donation today can improve a child’s tomorrow.

NITP serves the people of Wake County, NC.

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