Sunday, April 8, 2012

soapbox sunday. the self-esteem conundrum

when you look at yourself in the mirror every day,
what tone do you take with yourself?
ugly? tolerable? fat? soft? work-in-progress?
let's start with a fact. 

fact: this is not you. it's not me. it's not your best friend.
 these are models. professionals.
if they looked like anything but this, 
their stock would plummet. 
guess what? i bet they have "fat days",
and days when they look in the mirror and grimace. 
and we think, in unison, no wayyyy. 
well, that's the conundrum - no one is immune from the self-esteem plague.
not even these girls. 

you know how people often say that you'll find love once you stop looking?
i think the same is true concerning your best body image.
once you stop succumbing to the ourside pressures -
your friends, the media, the next wedding, that guy you want to impress -
you're just alone with yourself
if you cannot find happiness there, 
society wins

don't get me wrong, we all need to focus on our health and fitness;
but we do damage to our psyche if our motivations are misaligned. 
imagine: what if you weren't your own worst enemy.
what if you were your own inspiration? 
you set the rules. you craft the standards.

you know that quote about when you dislike someone, you allow them to live rent-free in your head?
the same is true for all these societal pressures. 
there are real bullies in the world, but sometimes the ones that inflict the most damage
are the ones staring at us in the mirror. 

i'm not saying give yourself a big hug. pat yourself on the back. meditate and sing kumbaya. 
what i am saying is to make a real effort to drown out the white noise of outside pressure.
be genuinely happy for your friends when they meet their goals.
but be in a position to where, if they do not return the favor, it doesn't matter.
 you have your own validation.
think that doesn't count for much?

when you're 95 on your death bed, are you going to be glad you beat up on yourself for decades on end?
or will you be satisfied because you replaced all the time you spent bullying yourself on doing something productive - family time. career building. friendship forging. faith enriching?
we don't stand for bullying in the classroom, and we shouldn't allow ourselves to endure the same torture by our hand - that is the ultimate civil war.

so yeah, it's a fashion blog.
but you cannot fall in love with fashion when you're intimidated by it.
so, today, i challenge you to give yourself a break. drown out the white noise.  

i love my friends. could we each be any more different? 
my guess is that you have a group of friends similarly diverse.
i'm the one in the green. 
i'm not the tall girls in the back. i'm not the ones with the pretty shades of blonde.
i'm not the pregnant one who was joyfully anticipating her child.
and that's okay!
if i didn't have such awesome, unique friends, my life would be so bland.

in sum, once you shift your perspective on the lens of life,
the stupid pressures are just that,
stupid pressures.
once you realize this, embrace it, smile pretty, and proceed confidently.
when you can do this, you win. 

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