I was chatting with one of the girls at work today. She has been looking at wedding rings and made the comment that “of course, none of the rings fit me, I have fat, ugly fingers.”
That comment hit me so hard. My response was a rather emphatic version of “THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH YOUR HANDS!!!! THISISABULLSHITSOCIETALCONSTRUCT!!!!!!YOUR HANDS ARE PERFECT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” It was a total mic drop situation.
It got me thinking though, how the fuck did we come to be in the position we are where we feel that FINGERS are ugly? Fingers…. fingers are tools, they are amazing! They grip things, caress things, have all of these little sensors that can take in the world, they are all unique, they have this memory that creates repetitive movements that allow us to type, write, play music etc. Fingers are badass. Why in the hell would we want them all to be the same?! Quit frankly I am proud of my hands, they are tough and strong and have the occasional callous because they do a lot of work and heavy lifting.
This is a timely piggyback off of my post yesterday about food and body image. Mainstream media makes me crazy. The “beauty ideals” that we are expected to embrace are simply idiotic. Those skinny models in magazines have to do a LOT to keep themselves that thin and people forget such things as airbrushing and creative photography exist. These images are not reality. They are constructs from some group of people who decided to prey on the fear. Fear of aging, fear that not being pretty enough meant your life would be harder or that you lack worth. It’s really annoying and needs to stop. It’s such fantastic fear based marketing to sell clothes, cosmetics, hair care and body products, cellulite reducers, wrinkle creams, diet after diet after diet, fat loss pills, energy pills, personal development trends…. the vast majority of marketing is fear based and the vast majority of people fall right into it. Myself included. I am much more aware of the choices I am making now and why I am making them but many times when I make a decision that goes against the norm I have this twinge of… hmmm…. maybe I am wrong to not be afraid of this, or maybe I am the one making the wrong decision about my body or my health. No NO NO!!!!!!! We are all built with these amazing feedback systems that tell us what we need, we just have to be tuned in enough to listen.
How do these negative thoughts and feelings about ourselves become habituated? They are repeated over and over and over again. It is just like anything really. If a kid grows up and feels like they are worthless it’s because they were told that over and over again. Sometimes that is a direct insult from parents or loved ones or a significant other but there is so much media influence that is present EVERYWHERE to pound that into our brains. We aren’t enough. We aren’t thin enough, smart enough or pretty enough. We are too different, not different enough. We are too fat, too tall, too loud. You can find conflicting evidence everywhere. The positive body movement is no different. Models are either exceptionally skinny or unhealthily overweight. There is never an in between which is unfortunate since most of us reside there. There is never just a you are enough. All of these conflicting images and outlooks leave people feeling lacking and confused.
How do we change that? We, as consumers, force industry to do better. We refuse to pander to their small thinking. We decide what is best for us. We decide what we need and want. We listen to our bodies and fearlessly move in the direction laid out for us by these badass biologic machines. We choose us.
Does this mean you have to go live in a van like a hippie and refuse to wear deodorant and live off grid in the mountains? No! If that’s what you want go for it. It means we can wear makeup because it makes us feel empowered, not because we think we need to cover our true selves. We make the choices we make for us, for what it brings us, not because we are afraid that if we don’t we will be viewed a certain way. We live for us and for no one else. We choose. We insist on better. We stick to our ideals and our ethics and we demand that consumer markets rise to meet us. We stop accepting companies and products that play on fear and we choose options with positive business models. We have so much power as consumers. Way more than we, as a single unit or person, give ourselves credit for. Become mindful in your day. Ask yourself why you are doing what you are doing? Is it because you want to? or because you feel like you need to in order to fit into society?
Make decisions for you. Trust your gut and your heart. ❤ ❤
Image by TheDigitalArtist at Pixabay.com