It makes me sad to say this, but it kind of makes sense that so many people hate their bodies.
Recently a reader e-mailed me and asked why it’s so terribly difficult for her to accept herself and her body. Part of the reason, I responded, is that when we attempt to make peace with ourselves, there are lots of forces against us. Confidence isn’t exactly encouraged in our society.
The big corporations, for example, make money off of our self-consciousness. Covergirl brings in the big bucks when we think our eyelashes aren’t full enough without their specially-formulated plumping mascara. Jenny Craig’s profits go up when we constantly think we need to lose ten pounds. Companies don’t want us to be confident because then we’ll think twice about handing over the contents of our wallets.
Sadly, our own friends and family might be on the same side as those corporations. While it’d be great if everyone we know always wanted the best for us, the truth is that when someone feels bad about herself, it’s hard for her to be truly happy for the self-assured people in her midst. Misery loves company, and in those cases confidence seems threatening.
No wonder we have such a body image issue on our hands.
I think it’s important to remember this notion – that when we practice self-acceptance, there are often forces pushing against us – because it reminds us that confidence takes courage.
Thinking you’re beautiful is an act of bravery.
Indeed, I’d go as far as to say that self-love is radical. It completely goes against the status quo, and as you step outside the box of “I’m not good enough” there are tons of people trying to push you back inside it.
Today, I’d like to tell you that you are bold. You are brave. You are courageous. No matter which advertisement tells you otherwise in the hopes of persuading you to spend your money. No matter which friend or family member wants you to feel bad about yourself just because she/he does. No matter who tries to knock you down a notch every time you manage to climb a rung higher.
Confidence takes courage. Fortunately, I’m feeling brave.
Do you think self-acceptance is a courageous act? What are the forces in your life that try to hinder you on your path toward a better body image?
This post is part of the Self-Discovery, Word by Word Blogger Series. You can participate too!