This post is by TheNotMom team writer Laura LaVoie:
There’s a video going around that you might have seen – this site featured it earlier this week.. Dove, a leader in attempting to change the way women perceive beauty, has released a very interesting video showing exactly how women view themselves versus how others see them.
The drawing at left reflects a woman’s description of herself; the drawing at right is how a friend sees her. Watch the video: It’s powerful. If you haven’t already seen it, here you go.
The skewed body and beauty perceptions that women have in this country are overwhelming and transcend motherhood and not-motherhood. Many people talk about how we pass on these negative body images to the next generation of women. All of us do, whether or not we have children.
So, how exactly do we change this negative body image trend? There are so many mixed messages in media and society it is difficult to know where to begin. Some people talk about body acceptance. Some people talk about being fit not skinny. There are several entire industries designed to make us buy products to change our shapes and most of them don’t work, they just perpetuate a buying cycle.
Body Image is reliant on only one thing – our brains. Only when we change our mind about our bodies and lives can we shine with confidence. Comfort comes at a lot of levels and no one else can tell other women how they should or should not feel about themselves. Why can’t we focus on accomplishments rather than attractiveness?
Dove is working hard to change our perceptions for the better. Watching a sketch artist draw the two versions of each woman is eye opening and some cases heart breaking. It is absolute proof that we are our own worst critics. I was very moved by their experiment and will strive to be better in this arena in my own life.
How can you begin to make changes?
- Regardless of your size, take steps to improve your overall health.
- Make a list of all the things you can do because of your body. Do you love to hike? Do you love to plant flowers? Do you love to dance? None of it is possible without the body you have.
- Dress for your shape. Don’t try to evaluate your beauty based on someone else’s shape. Wear what you love and what makes you feel good.
- Make a list of 10 things you love about your body and read it every day.
Don’t let anyone else tell you how you should look. And remember, it isn’t strangers that are judging you for your body or your beauty. If you can change your own perceptions, you can do anything.
(Image Credit: Dove)