There is a huge amount of emphasis based on appearance in our culture especially for girls and women. So, what does it really mean to be “beautiful”? Well I’m just going to point out the obvious here:beauty is completely subjective. There is no one size fits all version of beautiful. Even more importantly, how important is “being beautiful” anyway? Is being beautiful truly the most important thing we can be? I would argue not even close. Being a kind, loving, caring human being and living our lives to the fullest is far more important than our outer appearance.
This is really important to keep in mind when it comes to our food and body image issues. If we can take some of the pressure of the idea of beauty and this need to be seen by others as physically attractive, it can be such a helpful step in taking our body image to a more neutral place. We may not love how our body looks all the time, but even that switch from “I hate my body” to “My body is just not that important a part of who I am”, really makes a big difference. It’s not necessarily realistic to love our bodies everyday!
In fact, most of us even without a history of food and body image struggles, have moments or even days of not loving their outer appearance. So, this idea of needing to go from hating our bodies to loving them all the time is often actually a set up for failure but sadly, seems to be a far to common message we are presented with in the body positive world. What is not setting us up for failure is putting the importance we place on our appearance in its proper place. If we can slowly work to change this mindset that our outer appearance is the most important thing about us, we can do so much to improve not just our relationship to our body, but our relationship to food as well.
Questions about the idea of needing to be considered beautiful or anything else food/body image related? Feel free to get in touch!