I work in a tiny startup, digital marketing agency in India. I've always lived a very simple life. My way of life style is still very much influenced by the way it was in my childhood.
The thing is, I don't wear t-shirts and jeans. At office and outside, I wear formals. At home, shirt and pajama.
Now it might seem that I can try a t-shirt, but for now, I just don't like wearing it. For me, it's just like a man who always wears t-shirt and jeans and suddenly one day starts wearing Indian traditional clothes OR a girl who don't use much makeup and suddenly starts using a lot of makeup to impress people even when it makes her look little weird as compared to her way of lifestyle.
Personally, I don't miss wearing a t-shirt. I've tried wearing a t-shirt a few times but I didn't like it much. I just don't need it for now. I'm happy with what I wear currently.
The startup is planning a video shoot (that will be published and shared online, on Instagram/Facebook for example), and I've been asked to wear a company branded t-shirt for it. I'm not at all ready to wear a t-shirt.
I fear everyone who knows me, and probably who doesn't, will laugh at me when I wear the t-shirt. I'm thin and don't look good in t-shirts. I'm not afraid of just being trolled, I can handle it. It's just a question of my self-respect. The video will be shared on Instagram, Facebook etc. and some friends are always ready to make memes of it. I don't want myself in it. It might seem just a day, but it's something that will affect me every day. To be honest, if it happened, I won't be able to remove this thing from my daily thoughts.
My boss and I are respectful to each other. Everyone is satisfied with my work. The video shoot isn't optional, I have to be there, and I've been told to wear the t-shirt. I will not wear it unless it's a necessity for my work and life.
I want to have a conversation with my boss about my feelings on this. I haven't told them anything yet, but I'm not sure yet exactly how to say the things mentioned above without being rude.
So, how do I explain this to them without hurting our feelings?