So, I’ve been thinking. Uh oh. That’s not good, right? I’ve been warned about that. Just kidding. I couldn’t not have an opinion if I tried. Here’s one I feel the need to share. I’m not sure how to say this gently, so I’ll just say it. I don’t care what others think of me, and neither should you, especially when it comes to physical appearances. Alright, that’s not entirely true, but within reason it should be. Let me explain.
The media has set impossibly high standards for women to live up to, and instead of trying to lower those standards, if you don’t like them, ignore them. Who cares if you don’t have a supermodel body? cuz in 50 years, all the airbrushing and photoshopping in the world won’t save those models. There’s been a lot of different videos and movements in the media about models, airbrushing, photoshop, and allll that stuff, and I half way agree with the stuff that Dove is doing. Like this
They’re on the right track. But instead of teaching women that they are all more physically beautiful than they think, they need to show them that beauty isn’t about physical appearances. It’s about personality, and relationships. I think they touch on that a little in this, but not enough. They show how your personality really influences the way people see you. The tagline is ‘you’re more beautiful than you think’. It seems to me like it should be more like ‘you are beautiful, no matter what you think’ or something along those lines.
What matters is how you treat others, relationships shouldn’t be based off of the physical things. Even the most (skin deep)beautiful people can end up looking ugly if they treat others in an ugly way.
Of course there will always be first impressions, and sometimes the people who leave really odd, or even bad impressions, are the best. Sometimes the differences are what draw you together. As a culture we need to stop teaching that beauty is just skin deep. It’s not about looks, it’s about attitude, confidence, and the way you treat others. I think Roald Dahl put it perfectly-
“A person who has good thoughts cannot ever be ugly. You can have a wonky nose and a crooked mouth and a double chin and stick-out teeth, but if you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.”
That doesn’t mean you have completely accept the way they are, because some things are changeable, but they don’t need to measure up to your standards do they? and you don’t need to measure up to the worlds. Nobody needs your approval. Just because you disapprove, doesn’t mean they need to change. I know plenty of people who disagree with me about various things related to physical appearances, but doesn’t really matter. They aren’t responsible for the way I look. You can dislike someone’s physical appearance without disliking them. Be a truly tolerant person.
That’s another thing, tolerance doesn’t mean abiding by everyone else’s views, it means agreeing to disagree. Just because someone doesn’t like something that someone else does, that doesn’t mean they’re horrible and intolerant. It means they simply disagree, and disagreeing can be done without hating each other for it. It’s hypocritical to call someone hateful and intolerant because they refuse to agree with you and abide by the same rules as you. I believe that there is an ultimate standard but I’m not going to beat you over the head with a Bible if you refuse to agree with me(that’s ultimately where my standards come from, especially for beauty)Yes, I might believe you are wrong, and there are consequences, but I’m going to respect your choices as an adult as long as you act like one. Don’t throw tantrums when I disagree and then act insulted when I tell you you’re being childish.
Being tolerant is a two way street. If someone tells something bothers them, something that is easily changeable, you should do your best to accommodate them. That doesn’t mean you have to completely change the way you are for everyone because, like I said, you don’t need to measure up to everyone else’s standards all the time. You’ll never be able to please everyone all at the same time. Jesus was perfect and people still managed to find fault with him, and, let’s be honest, you’re far from perfect. If he couldn’t please everyone, neither can you. But you should do your best to refrain from doing whatever it is that bothers them, when you’re around them. It’s called freedom of speech, they have the right to tell you if they disagree about something with you, and you have the ability to either act like an adult and treat them respectfully, and politely, or you can act like a child and parade all your differences in front of them just because you can. It’s your choice.
Sorry, I got a little side tracked.
I’m not saying you have to be perfectly content with your body, it’s ok, to dislike certain things about your own appearance without having low self esteem. I dislike the way I squint when I smile, I don’t like my wide ribcage, or my long torso, but that’s the way I was made so I need to stop trying to look different. I need to find ways to work with it. I’ll never have the same graceful figure as some of my sisters, but that’s ok. Diffrent body types are better for different things. My sister found this article for me. It talks about how different body types are obviously more ideal for certain sports and competitions. Look at the super thin runners, the small and squarely built wrestlers, and the tall long limbed basketball players, and jumpers. They were built for it.
This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t care at all about your body because it is the way it is, and always will be. You need to take good care of it. I decided long ago that I’m not exercising so I’ll look better in my swimsuit or in shorts. I’m exercising because this is my body and I need to take care of it. It’s the only one I’ll have, I don’t want to mess it up. Looking good in summer clothes is definitely a nice side effect of exercise, but it’s a different ‘looking good’, I won’t get a flat stomach or thinner legs from working out. I certainly won’t weigh less. But I can hit harder, run faster, and lift more now. You will never be able to measure up to the media’s standards of beauty, and be healthy. Well, almost never. Everyone has that one family member who has a flat stomach and graceful curves without even trying. Seriously, my younger sister eats like a horse, but weighs 112lb and is 5’6″. That’s not really fair. But, she didn’t try for this. It was given to her. Only a few people actually look like her. And if you aren’t one of them, stop trying to look like them. You’re obviously not meant to be a model.
I noticed I have a body type closer to the boxers and the weight lifters, and wrestlers, than anything else. I am shorter with a longer torso and a bigger ribcage. It’s not super graceful looking but that doesn’t matter. It’s unique. It’s different, it’s me. I spent a lot of time being jealous of some people I know who have really forgiving body types, (all that means is they can eat all the junk food they want and somehow they still look amazing) but there are things that I’m going to be much better at naturally, and there are things they can do better than me. Example: Because of my extremely competitive nature, I want to be the best at everything I do, but there are things like basketball, that my younger sister can do better than me. And that’s because she’s built for it. But, she has on occasion told me that she’s actually jealous of my build. Which seems utterly ridiculous, but it makes sense. If we’re not happy with what we have, why should those who have what we’ve been told is perfect be happy? If you’re surrounded by discontentment, you’ll find it really hard to be content.
I follow this really neat, hippy-ish, yoga girl on instagram, and one time she said ‘be yourself, not because everyone else is taken, but because you are awesome’. You are you for a reason. Find out what it is, instead of wondering why you’re not someone else. Comparison is the thief of joy. Everyone is different, and everyone has the opportunity to be a truly beautiful person whether the world tells you so or not. It’s up to you.
Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but the woman who fears the Lord shall be praised-Proverbs 31:30