Beauty is in the eye of the beholder – not media stereotypes! (Tweet that!)
Conversations with girlfriends often spawn ideas for blog posts. I had one of those discussions the other day which began with a question about my mindfulness post last week.
Two comments during this chat struck me: firstly that we should learn to accept the jiggly bits, and secondly that we all want to look a certain way because that’s what society says is beautiful.
Well, both rang clanging alarm bells and had we not been interrupted by small people we may have developed the ideas further – so why not do so here?
Accepting one’s jiggly bits is kind of like accepting that you’ve got a tattoo across your forehead. It doesn’t particularly sit well with you but you put up with it because there’s nothing else you can do (or it’s just too bloody hard).
It’s not the same as embracing your body and celebrating it – loving the skin you’re in.
Jiggly bits are part of what makes you unique. It’s when we move from a place of merely accepting them (but not really liking them) to loving your whole body, jiggly bits and all, because it’s what makes you who you are; that’s where contentment resides.
Then there’s the fact that you notice the jiggly bits because they don’t conform to your idea of beauty. As the old saying goes; beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
The stereotype of what beautiful looks like is what’s promulgated through the media. Somehow that stereotype becomes the ‘ideal’ and women (and men) punish themselves with diets, fitness regimes and negative self-talk/body image because they don’t conform to it.
Yep, we definitely all like to look at a pretty face. But your idea of what pretty or beautiful is differs completely from mine. You can argue that symmetry plays a part and sure, it certainly can but I find my husband to be utterly gorgeous and he’s got a totally unsymmetrical face!
Beauty is different to everyone just as we are all uniquely different and beautiful. I’ve seen, heard and been on the receiving end of perceptions about beauty – that I wasn’t beautiful because I didn’t conform to the stereotype.
Adults and children alike do this, with little comments like ‘you’ll grow out of your puppy fat’, or ‘you’ve just got big legs and you’ll have to put up with it’. These types of comments, while probably well-meaning, reinforce that something about you as you are is not right; it doesn’t conform to the supposed norm.
I’m here to reiterate – it’s bullshit. You are beautiful exactly as you are.
We are more than just what we look like on the outside and our true beauty lies inside us. It will always shine through and illuminate your face and entire being regardless of what you look like on the outside. That’s what makes us beautiful as people.
Attractiveness has so much more to it than what we look like and the sooner we teach our children to be beautiful people, and forget about the stereotypes, the better. Then we’ll foster a generation of humans who care for one another and see the beauty in everything.
We don’t have to conform to or buy into the stereotype. Frankly I think I’m pretty damn hot and sexy regardless – or is it because of – my jiggly bits.
It’s time to embrace our uniqueness – let’s set that as the new stereotype for beautiful!