Would it surprise you to learn that in the U.S., a whopping 80% of women are dissatisfied with their appearance?
It doesn’t surprise me one bit. Indeed, I think the fact that so many people – especially women – are at war with their reflections makes complete and total sense.
Why? Part of the reason is that when we attempt to make peace with ourselves and our looks, there are a lot of forces working against us. Confidence isn’t exactly encouraged in our society.
Think about it. The big corporations 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 soar when we constantly believe we need to lose ten pounds.
Those companies don’t want us to have body confidence 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 wonderful if everyone always wanted the best for us, the truth is that when someone is struggling with her own self-esteem, it’s hard for her to be truly happy for the confident people in her midst.
Misery loves company, and confident people can seem downright threatening. No wonder we have such a body image issue on our hands.
Wish you felt more comfortable in your skin? Remember this: Being confident requires courage. Believing you’re beautiful is an act of bravery.
I might even go as far as to say that true body confidence is radical. It goes completely against the status quo; as you step outside the box of “I’m not good enough” there are loads of people who want to push you back inside it.
There’s something incredibly powerful about having that “aha” moment where you realize that your struggles with body image aren’t necessarily coming from you, at least not entirely. There’s a whole world of people out there – including some very powerful advertising executives – who are trying to make you feel bad about yourself.
The good news is that you can choose to ignore them.
You can choose to have the courage to feel confident. You can choose to be brave in your acceptance of yourself, just the way you are.
No matter which advertisement tells you you’re not good enough in the hopes of convincing you to buy a product. No matter which friend or family member wants you to feel bad about yourself just because she does.
Body confidence takes courage, but today’s a great day to be 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?