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What Society Doesn’t Tell You That I Will

Magazines, TV shows, movies, and many parts of society tell us that we’re too skinny or too fat, too short or too tall, our make-up is too much or not enough, our hair is too blonde or too dark, and the list could seriously go on for days. Can I just say that society really stinks sometimes? We aren’t told every day that we are strong and beautiful, we’re told that to be strong and beautiful we must do what we see. We’re constantly hearing that we’re “too” something, never with a just-right balance whatsoever.
I’m here to tell you that you’re not “too” anything;
I’m here to tell you what society won’t.

You are beautiful exactly how you are.
Whether you feel skinny or fat or in-between, (because honestly, who is to determine that?) you are beautiful. If your body is covered in burns, stretch marks, pimples, cellulite or hair; you are beautiful. If you’re tan as can be or pale as they come; you are beautiful. Do you see where I’m going with this? We have to stop believing that one thing is beautiful and another is not. We are all beautiful, period.

One size does not, will not, and should not fit all.
The other day while shopping, I saw cute shirt with stretchy fabric. Naturally, I went to check the size. The tag said, “One size fits most.” I’m sorry… what? So if this stretchy fabric doesn’t fit someone correctly, that tells them, “This shirt fits most people, but not you.” NO! One size does not, will not, and should not fit everyone, or even “most.” All people are different shapes and sizes and there is nothing wrong with that. In fact, we should embrace the fact that we’re not all the same, that we can’t all fit into the same stretchy shirt.

Don’t focus so much on the number on the scale.
150 pounds could cover 150 different body types. Two people who look completely different could weigh the very same, and two people who look similar could vastly differ in weight. Don’t obsess over the number you see on the scale, focus more on living a healthy lifestyle than shedding pounds.

Never skip a meal. Allow yourself to eat the cookie.
Never, ever, ever skip out on eating. Not only do you not need to, but it’s so much healthier for your body to be fed the right nutrients than to be fed nothing at all. When you don’t eat, your body breaks down muscle mass and actually holds onto fat. Don’t be afraid of balance, either; balance is everything. If you want the cookie, eat the cookie!

Those models you’re looking at are Photoshopped.
Seriously. Every single picture you see in a magazine, if not Photoshopped, is re-touched before being published. There’s a video out there of a guy who uses Photoshop to turn a piece of pizza into a model. That’s not even a joke. Although they want it to appear so, there is nothing natural about that model you see laying on the sand with her back arched, with her hands in her hair and her toes pointed. That’s not real life. Real life is sitting in a beach chair, sweating from head to toe, with a bloated tummy from last night’s buffet (or at least that’s mine when I’m at the beach). There is just nothing wrong with that.

Wear what you want.
Just because brown boots or plaid scarves or ripped jeans are supposedly what’s in style, doesn’t mean that’s what you have to wear. It’s okay to have your own style. And this goes for anything: you don’t have to like something just because someone else does.

It’s okay not to have social media pages.
If you don’t want Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc., you don’t have to have them. If you have them and find that they’re more negative than fun, (which is often the case) it is okay to delete them. Most importantly, if you have them, it’s okay not to post details about your personal life for the world to see.

It’s okay not to share your political/religious beliefs.
There is a polite way to say you’d rather not share these controversial topics. It’s also okay not to shut people down just because they choose to. It’s okay to listen to other people’s opinions without throwing yours in their face or telling them theirs is wrong. Opinions aren’t right or wrong… they’re opinions.

It’s okay to ask for help.
Not only is it okay, it’s important. The world we live in today is so fast-paced, sometimes we forget to stop and genuinely ask people how they are. If you ever feel like you’re going at something alone, or you’re finding an unhealthy way to deal with something, reach out to someone. A friend, a teacher, parent, guidance counselor, anyone. It’s so important to know that we aren’t alone in this life, and comforting (and sometimes surprising) to realize just how many people have felt the same things we have, even if we assume no one understands.

It’s important to do what’s best for you. Regardless of what we see in magazines, on TV, social media, movies, etc., we have to understand that sometimes what works for other people just doesn’t fit into our personal lifestyle. At the end of the day, you have to do what’s best for you, even if that isn’t the same concept that works for someone else. The most important thing to know is something we should remind ourselves of every day:
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”
-Eleanor Roosevelt


Written by: Ginny Reavis Thiele

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