I had so many ideas about how to write this post but in the end I decided that a rant would be more suitable, because I HATE this topic with a passion.
Sunday 27th March 2016 (EASTER)
“There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful than a woman being unapologetically herself; comfortable in her perfect imperfection. To me, that is the true essence of beauty”- Dr. Steve Maraboli
Today I was perusing on Twitter when I saw a young girl, who I don’t know, tweet about how she was “too fat” and how she was depressed because of the way she looks. To me this just suggested that she didn’t look like a celebrity, because they’re who we all compare ourselves too, even if we don’t like to admit it. It did upset me quite a lot because I understood her and could relate to how she was feeling as I have been in that dark pit of a place labelled depression myself. It also got me thinking, because I have learnt a lot over my years as a media student about representations, stereotypes and the devil itself.. The media.
People nowadays, not necessarily just women, have a consistent dark cloud above their heads that is filled with the image of how they see themselves and the image of how they ‘should’ look.We all know that the main goal in terms of how we look is to strive for perfection but do we actually know what perfection is?
The answer is no, because it does NOT exist.
Whether your goal is to look like Gigi Hadid, Blair Waldorf or even just the pretty girl who you stalk on instagram, there must be something about that person that you see as perfect, otherwise this would disrupt your path to perfection. So what is perfection?
Perfection in the way of our body image is the idea that we have gathered from various different forms of media to create this stereotype of the ideal person or ideal body. This stereotype has been repeated and repeated for years, which has made us as an audience accept it as the ‘norm’. This image has been drilled into our brain and has brainwashed us as a generation to think that this is how we should look if we want to be accepted by society. and i’m sorry but that’s just not true
The image itself probably originated from the ideology that women were just an ‘object’ for men and we were something sacred, something to look at rather independent people. This obviously has been proved wrong and although we cannot yet say that there is full gender equality, we’re certainly getting there.
The media has constructed this image through a little trick that they call ‘gatekeeping’. This is basically where they only show certain aspects of something rather than all of it. For example a model on a billboard. Yes they may look perfect on that billboard but that isn’t actually what they look like (completely). The image goes through a long photoshop session where acne, scars, cellulite, places with lumps and bumps or extra weight is removed, as if it was never there in the first place. So really you aren’t seeing the model, you’re seeing how to model has been constructed to look. Sounds stupid doesn’t it? This image is what we compare ourselves to, a construction.
As humans we naturally compare ourselves to this image, it’s completely normal to do this because after all we just want to be accepted and not judged by others but before you go to do it the next time, just realize that nobody actually looks like that. Not even the model in the picture. I realize that I’ve rambled.
Point is, people are comparing themselves to something that is impossible to achieve in order to conform to the ideas that the media has brainwashed us with. Know that people come in all different shapes and sizes and your body is perfect in its own way. Do not feel the need to change who you are or how you look in order to conform to these crazy ideas because as long as you are happy and healthy, nothing can stop you from being confident. Confidence is key to being successful so focus on the present and scrap those silly ideas that you view as perfection, put ’em in the bin.
Sorry this was so long but I did warn you that I was passionate about this topic. Till next time,