What is “Beauty?”

“Nothing makes a woman more beautiful than the belief that she is beautiful.” ~ Sophia Loren. Do you ever look at yourself in the mirror and question what it is about you that people like? Do you ever stare at yourself and only see all your flaws? Perhaps you have a freckle you can’t stand. Or maybe you don’t like the size of your nose or the size of your thighs. We all judge ourselves but it is important to recognize our judgmental behavior and instead of faulting ourselves for our flaws, embracing them. Why? Because they make up who we are. We are all unique. We are all beautiful. How you choose to define “beautiful” is up to you. To me, “beautiful” means the flaws, the uniqueness, the kindness one sparks. The things that make us us. For others, “beautiful” is the color of one’s eyes, the color of one’s hair, and the way they dress like a model.

Every girl and woman goes through a time in her life where she feels as if they are in competition with society on how to look. We are lead to think that “beautiful” means looking like a superstar model, with perfect everything (perfect legs, perfect breasts, perfect teeth, perfect clothes) but the reality is that we are all our own person and cannot look like anyone else but ourselves (though we can get plastic surgery to try). When society tells us that “big” women are not “pretty” we are lead to believe that they aren’t. When society tells us repeatedly that woman who aren’t a size 0 are considered “big”, again we are supposed to believe that. How many times do we have to hear these remarks before we realize it is not true? The more girls and women hear how they are “supposed” to look, the more they start to believe it to be true. The problem is, how can we encourage individuals to just be themselves and not change because of what others are telling them? When a bully repeatedly calls someone a bad name, for example, the victim at times will then start to think, “Hmm…maybe that’s true” when the reality is the bully is just trying to provoke them. When one hears themselves being called a name over and over they begin to have difficulty distinguishing the difference between what is not true and what is true. Similarly, the more commercials our eyes and ears hear about how delicious a hamburger is the more we believe the commercial to be true, leading us to go out and try the burger.

Society continues to make us believe things and when it comes to what beauty is and means, the decision is yours. So when you think about the word “beautiful” and when you look at yourself in the mirror, think about Steve Maraboli’s words, “There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful, than a woman being unapologetically herself; comfortable in her perfect imperfection. To me, that is the true essence of beauty.”

 

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