When most of us think about job hunting, our brains go straight to the obvious: resumes, interviews, cover letters.

We tend to skip over a key ingredient of job searching success: social skills. Specifically, practiced social interaction with people in real life. It’s important to remember that recruiters and hiring managers aren’t hiring a piece of paper (no matter how pretty your resume may be); they’re hiring a person, someone they believe will positively impact the workplace environment and build up others.

That’s where ME+iD apparel comes into play.

Our tees and sweatshirts are meant to facilitate communication in the offline world, to provide opportunities for complete strangers to make connections, both big and small. This means there are two ways ME+iD apparel inherently lends itself to helping you become a much hotter item on the job market.

  1. Advertise your area of expertise in an open, friendly way.

The first way ME+iD apparel can help you get a job is rather obvious, but worth mentioning just the same. By wearing your skillset or career choice on your tee, you automatically become a walking, talking advertisement for yourself.

The best part? You’re opening the door for conversation about your career path in the least pushy way possible, and you’re opening that door to every single person who catches sight of your shirt.

  1. Increase your SEL skills.

The second way ME+iD apparel can help you land that dream job is less obvious, but no less important: Wearing ME+iD apparel can help you increase your SEL skills.

SEL (social and emotional learning) is a process through which we make responsible decisions, manage emotions, achieve goals, and establish and maintain relationships. SEL skills include communication, collaboration and problem solving—skills that are expected to become more and more important as our workforce relies heavily on technology.

ME+iD tees naturally give the wearer opportunities to practice speaking with others and to build face-to-face relationships, whether those relationships last a lifetime or the length of the store check-out line.

Remember, while ME+iD tees can open the door for you, they can’t carry the rest of the conversation for you. If you struggle with interpersonal interactions, we recommend taking a few pages (or a lot of pages) out of Dale Carnegie’s “How to Win Friends and Influence People.”

Carnegie devotes quite a bit of time on the art of making people like you, explaining you should do everything from actively listening to smiling. Our favorite tip, however, is one that connects directly to the “What’s your thing?” on the bottom of every ME+iD tee: Be genuinely interested in other people. Care. They’ll know it, and they’ll like you for it.

Ready to share your passion with those around you? Customize a ME+iD tee to show off your talents and/or career path to start connecting your way to your dream job. 

The way we dress says a lot about us. It’s one of the clearest nonverbal ways we have of communicating our personalities and lifestyles.

Your oversized tee paired with bright pink hair and lime green leggings might scream “wild and crazy” or your neatly pressed blouse and dark skinny jeans might say “classy and tame.”

That lab coat or work badge or messenger bag might showcase your line of work, while your team jersey or your martial arts gi hints at your hobbies.

Every day, every outfit, you are sending a message (either loudly or subtly) from you to the world: “This is who I am.”

The choices we make when it comes to wardrobe and presentation are almost always centered around how we perceive ourselves. Of course, that then influences how others perceive us.

Even with all of these messages we’re sending with our wardrobe choices, there’s still some guesswork involved with most articles of clothing. You might see someone wearing your favorite athletic shoes and find yourself wondering if it’s a style choice, or perhaps they’re really into basketball like you are. Are those yoga pants about comfort, or does that lady over there love a good Surya Namaskara as much as you do?

The way we dress offers clues about us, but there is also a certain ambiguity. There’s nothing wrong with that, of course, but sometimes you actually want to say what you really mean instead of just hinting at it with your wardrobe choices.

ME+iD apparel gives you the option to tell the world in no uncertain terms, “Hey, this is my thing.”

Graphic design, pickleball, yoga, fishing, entrepreneurship—it doesn’t matter what your thing is, as long as it represents YOU and the brand you want to create for yourself to share with the world.

In Forbes’ 10 Golden Rules of Personal Branding, they quote Tim Salau, a community builder and the founder of Mentors & Mentees: “Your personal brand should follow you everywhere you go. It needs to be an authentic manifestation of who you are and amplify what you believe.”

What do you believe? What message are you trying to share with the world? What’s your thing?

By sharing your answers on a ME+iD tee, you’re broadcasting your personal brand while inviting others to talk to you about it and to share their beliefs and interests right back to you. Your clothing choices give you the opportunity to start IRL conversations based on a mutual interest and clear willingness on your part to be approached.

Since we at ME+iD fully recognize that it’s not just about what you say but how you say it that counts in building your brand, each ME+iD tee design is eye-catching and tasteful, not to mention fun and engaging.

Want to build your brand? Customize your own stylish tee and start sharing your message today.

Lots of things are missing from our lives during the COVID-19 crisis: hair stylists, schools, babysitters, sanity, toilet paper… The list could go on. But one of the things people seem to be missing the most is regular social interaction.

Why is that? Are humans really hardwired to be social?

According to Dr. Matthew Lieberman, a UCLA neuroscientist, the answer is yes, we are. In his book “Social: Why Our Brains are Wired to Connect,” Dr. Lieberman explains why social connection is as important as food and shelter.

“Mammals are more socially connected than reptiles, primates more than other mammals, and humans more than other primates,” he said. “What this suggests is that becoming more socially connected is essential to our survival. In a sense, evolution has made bets at each step that the best way to make us more successful is to make us more social.”

Even the introverts among us have to admit that the social distancing and quarantining are getting old, fast. We crave interaction (even if only on a small scale, for some of us) because that’s how we’re built.

ME+iD was founded on the idea of connecting people face to face, facilitating easy conversations with those around them through a simple, stylish means. While starting a conversation with the person standing six feet away from you at the grocery store might not be all that advisable at the moment, it doesn’t mean you’ve lost all chance of connection with those around you.

In fact, small, simple connections might just be more important than ever since they can help you fill that social-sized hole in your heart. Wondering how to facilitate those small, simple connections without breaking social distancing? We’ve got a few ideas just for you:

  • Smile at those around you. (Wearing a mask? No worries. It’s usually pretty easy to tell when someone gives a genuine smile even if you can’t see their mouth thanks to other facial cues like sparkling eyes, raised cheeks and wrinkles at the corners of the eyes.)
  • Wave at your neighbors. It’s an easy way to show you care—without getting too close, of course.
  • Video chat regularly with family members and friends. Text messages are fine and phone calls are nice, but there’s just something about seeing those nonverbal cues during conversation that really takes it to the next level. (Plus, grandkids can be seriously funny to watch.)
  • Watch Netflix with family members simultaneously. Thanks to Netflix Party, you can have an easy virtual movie night with your loved ones.
  • Wear a ME+iD tee. While you aren’t trying to invite up-close and personal conversation at the moment, you can still use a ME+iD tee to share a little piece of yourself (or an uplifting message of your choice) with those around you, letting them know you care while sending a silent, simple message: We will all get through this together.

 

 

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“You’ve got mail.”

Twenty years ago, this simple message from AOL seemed about as high-tech as a person could get. But then the bar raised with an exciting new social network called Facebook. Then it raised again with the arrival of the iPhone, a cellphone that doubled as a mini computer you could keep with you at all times.

Now we’re at the point where we can instantly connect with people from all over the world and not give it another thought:

·       We read blogs daily for news, updates and advice.
·       We react to pictures, memories and stories on Facebook.
·       We know what our friends had for lunch thanks to Instagram.
·       We laugh together on Tumblr.
·       We might even land a job interview because of LinkedIn.

Of course, there’s also Twitter, Vine, YouTube, Snapchat, Pinterest, TikTok and so many other ways to get to know people online.

Offline, though, it’s a different story. If you poke someone offline, you’re likely to get (at best) some really weird looks. To block someone IRL, you have to literally walk away or plug in some heavy-duty earphones.

Friend requests have to be made in a more subtle way.

And—perhaps most significant of all—there’s no obvious lead-in to an introduction or a conversation. This means we miss out on potentially amazing connections every day simply because we don’t realize that that connection has just walked right past us.

The person sitting across from you waiting for the same flight could be perfect to interview for your work or school project. The lady checking her email in the coffee shop might be the next lead singer of your band. The dad at school pick-up might just sell you your next house. The people who could enter your life on a small or large scale are all around you; you just need an opening to find those connections.

ME+iD was founded on the idea of creating that opening for you, and it does it with something as simple as an article of clothing.

By showcasing your passion on a beautifully designed tee, you are automatically introducing a key part of your life to those around you, which in turn encourages them to reciprocate. You might explore or discuss your favorite hobby, finding others who want to learn more or who have their own take already.

If you offer a service (such as web designing, editing, babysitting or dog walking, to name a few), you might make your tee into a wearable business card, advertising your services to all you come in contact with in a non-intrusive, friendly way.

If you don’t want to encourage close-up conversation in this time of social distancing, you could still connect with those around you by sharing a humorous or uplifting message. (And don’t forget, you still have the chance to start conversations with your tee through virtual meetings! Zoom, anyone?)

Just as Mark Zuckerburg started Facebook at Harvard to connect students, we have started a movement to connect people in real life—quarantine or no. So join us. Wear your passion. Make a connection.

We want to know: What’s your thing?

 

 

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In our daily lives, we encounter many people. But so often we are lost in our own world of things we need to accomplish, our schedule, family and friend issues, worries and concerns, or our hand held electronics, that we hardly notice the other people around us.  What a waste! You never know who may be standing beside you in the line at the bank, or McDonalds, or in the doctor’s office. They may be someone you would have a connection with, something in common, a potential friend or colleague. If you make the decision to become an “in person” person, you could change your life with a simple conversation. By wearing Me+ID, you can open the door to conversation and connection with a person that may just become your new best friend. Our clothing helps facilitate those connections and gives you an opportunity that no other clothing provides.  Oh sure, you can wear a designer brand with a popular company’s logo on your chest, but what does that really tell anyone about you personally? Wouldn’t you rather wear your own brand? Be your own person. Be and “in person” person and take the opportunities you have to meet new people and make the world a friendlier place

Have you seen the psa video where kids talk about their “thing”? We all have a “thing”, a passion, something that, when we do it, we lose track of time. It’s great to have a “thing” or maybe more than one, or five!  Now you can share your “thing” with the world as you walk through life by wearing it on your clothing. That is your ME+ID. ME+ID tags your “thing” with a question – “What’s your thing?” It starts people thinking about what they would wear if they were lucky enough to have a ME+ID. It gives people the opportunity to make a connection over your “thing”, and strike up a conversation. If you like to meet new people and talk about your “thing” and maybe their “thing” too, just wear ME+ID! Watch the psa now and think about What’s your thing? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vs4zkcBX-mA

In thinking about the impact ME+ID products can have on the wearer and on the reader, we thought wearing our shirts could be considered a type of social experiment. The shirt you wear will attract different reactions from a variety of people. If you wear a Vegan shirt, interested folks will comment. However if you wear a Chicago shirt, an entirely different group will be interested in talking to you. A bit of research led us to a blog by Melissa Hartwig, She is the co-creator of the original Whole30 program, the New York Times bestselling author of The Whole30 and It Starts With Food,  and has been featured by Dr. Oz, Good Morning America, the Wall Street Journal, Details, Shape, Outside, and SELF.

 

Melissa did a social experiment of her own according to her March 25, 2013, blog entitled, I Talk to Strangers. She made a conscious effort to ask people one question to engage them. She found that she and those she talked to really enjoyed these encounters. The idea for the Great Social Experiment started when her husband, Dallas Hartwig, began sharing his research into stress and socialization as part of his Functional Medicine studies. He found that social interaction has a powerful effect on our system, and provides a buffer against the physical and psychological consequences of stress and stress-related diseases. In layman’s terms, positive social interaction makes us less stressed, and keeps us healthier. That’s great news for our ME+iD mission: Connecting people face to face, making the world a friendlier place! Wear. Chat. connect. What’s your thing?

The way you dress likely offers others insight into your personality (wild and crazy or straight-laced), maybe your profession (white lab coat, anyone?), and possibly even your hobbies or interests (like a favorite team jersey).  The way you present yourself lets people around you know what kind of priorities you have, how strict you are about cultural norms, and possibly your religious affiliation. Really, our clothes serve as a means of communication with those around us.

ME+iD takes this idea further. Not only does it broadcast your message, but it invites others to talk to you about it, or even to change the subject entirely by talking about THEIR thing. Your clothing choices have the opportunity to start IRL conversations based on a mutual interest and a clear willingness on your part to be approached. When you wear ME+iD apparel, you’re opening a line of communication between you and the rest of the world.

Of course, one of the first things we consider when choosing what to wear is “how does it look?” Yes, it’s exciting to pull your passion on each morning with your t-shirt, but it’s even better when that shirt also looks amazing. ME+iD designs are eye-catching and tasteful, they’re fun and engaging. Look great, feel awesome? That’s a win-win in our book!

We’re always interested in hearing what our customers think and the types of connections they make when wearing ME+iD. Did you strike up a conversation in the grocery store, get a compliment from a stranger on the sidewalk, or impress your teacher? Email us your experiences through our contact form, and maybe they’ll be highlighted here on our blog.

There are two fairly “obvious” ways that ME+iD apparel could help our customers get a job. First of all, we could hire you. It’s not super likely right now, although you’re definitely encouraged to keep checking back as we continue to grow! The second most obvious way is that someone could see you wearing your passion, approach you, and offer to hire you.  Sounds like a pretty sweet deal.

But the less overt way our apparel can affect the trajectory of your career has to do with SEL. Say what?! SEL is shorthand for Social and Emotional Learning, a category of skills that aren’t necessarily a part of our current education process. Some SEL skills could include communication, collaboration, and problem solving—each of which is expected to become more and more important as our workforce relies more heavily on technology. Individuals are not currently cultivating these skills, which threatens their future success in an economy where half of the future jobs likely don’t even exist yet!

So, how does this relate to ME+iD and our apparel? We’re so glad you asked! One of our company’s biggest goals is to facilitate communication in the offline world. We want to provide opportunities for complete strangers to recognize a common interest and start a conversation. We want them to share their knowledge, to get to know each other, and to develop actual connection to others; whether it’s for the duration of a wait in line or as a new life-long friendship.

It’s not all that unusual for us to go through our days with heads down, smartphones in hand. We enjoy keeping in touch with friends, staying up-to-date on the news, etc., and there’s nothing wrong with that. On the other hand, there’s a lot going on in the environment around us. ME+iD gives us a reason to look up, to engage with others, and to build the social and emotional skills that make you stand out to potential employers and to their customers.

From adults to teens and right on down to the little ones, we sure do love our screen time. The question is, does it love us back? Researchers have been studying various aspects of this question for a while, and the answer doesn’t look so good. Many of us are now spending hours and hours texting, emailing, and scrolling through our social media feeds every day. We tell ourselves that it helps to keep us connected to others, which should lead to happier, more fulfilling lives. That’s just common sense, right?

It turns out: Not so much. A new study out of San Diego State University is showing exactly the opposite. Led by professor Jean M. Twenge, researchers utilized data from more than a million teens, providing a huge sample for the study. The results revealed that those who spent a significant amount of time on their smartphones were unhappier than young people who were busy with other types of behaviors. For example, those who spent more time engaged in face-to-face interaction, and activities such as playing sports or spending time outdoors, were found to be much happier than their peers.

So much happier.

Twenge has conducted a number of studies on the topic, and one of the most distressing findings is that teens who spend four, five, or more hours on their phones daily are SEVENTY-ONE PERCENT more likely to commit suicide. That is a sobering statistic, and one that might make you want to snatch the phone out of your child’s hand right now.

It’s not just teens that need to rethink their smartphone usage, either. While we want to believe the devices help us connect with others, it appears that exactly the opposite can happen. The constant presence of smartphones in our daily lives has been shown to hinder real-life interactions, as there is a constant source of interruption breaking down your connection. In fact, they are so distracting that they don’t even have to be turned on to pull our attention away from whatever is in front of us! Basically, our bodies are on alert for any type of communication that might be about to come through.

The physical aspects of phone use are troubling as well. When we engage with someone face-to-face, we tend to look forward, with our shoulders squared toward the person and our heads up. Conversely, when using a phone, we strain our necks, back, shoulders, and even our eyes! It’s worth noting that when we’re on the phone, we’re also not moving our bodies in healthy ways. Sure, you might wander across the street while commenting on a funny video, but that’s certainly not the same as working out…or even taking a brisk walk. (It can also get you run over or cause another type of accident.)

Of course, smartphone technology does a lot of wonderful things for us. It’s amazing to have the whole internet at your fingertips (or thumb tips, as the case may be), and anyone over 40 is thrilled to no longer have to memorize everyone’s phone numbers. Moderation is the key here. Phones are a great tool, but they should be considered just that…a tool that augments our real-life experiences such as meeting new people and taking part in activities that stimulate our bodies and minds.