Is it just me or has the term body positivity been thrown out the window?
When I was walking outside this past Sunday, I was behind two girls who were around the age of thirteen and one of them said “I am so fat and I just hate the way I look” and in response, the other girl said “ugh me too.” It broke my heart when I heard them say these words. These girls were the size of my fingers and definitely did not need to think so negatively about themselves. Regardless of their weight, this is not okay ESPECIALLY coming from a thirteen year old. I was fortunate enough to grow up in a world without Instagram and social media (FB became popular early High School and Instagram not until college) and I am ever so thankful for that. Imagine constantly strolling through Instagram at such a young age and seeing all these models or girls with the “perfect” body and having society tell you this is how you should look? It would absolutely consume me.
I never used to be self conscious of the way I looked until college. Growing up I played sports so I was pretty active and never had a “weight problem.” In all honestly, my self consciousness started when Instagram became a thing. I kept comparing myself to how others looked and always wished I had their bodies even when I was a size 0/2 throughout college. It also did not help that all my friends would constantly talk about working out, wanting to lose weight, and needing to look good at all times to impress a boy. I would always ask myself if I needed to watch what I’m eating or do an extra workout just because I was surrounded around that negativity 24/7. To make matters worse, two of my best friends had pretty bad eating disorders years prior so I would always be careful about what I mentioned to them because I didn’t want to trigger those emotions in them again. To this day I always feel so uncomfortable talking to people about working out, eating, and any aspect of how we look. It is such a personal thing and it needs to stop consuming everyones lives. It is so extremely unhealthy! Don’t get me wrong, I love to workout and eat healthy but I do it for me and not because I want to look a certain way. My body gains/losses weight all the time and I’ve finally accepted that I don’t have the body that I had when I was in high school / college and I’m OKAY with that! And you should be too. Regardless of what size you are.
Alicia wrote an incredible post on the importance of staying positive in the age of social media. In 2019 we live in a world where people constantly face-tune their bodies to look better. Let’s take a moment and ask ourselves, why? Why do we do this? Who are we trying to impress? If we don’t love ourselves first then our followers won’t love us or will they? Let’s stop being fake to ourselves and finally stop trying to be the someone who we aren’t. I may not be a blogger but as a “normal person” I follow people because I love who they are. The ones that are genuine and are true to themselves about their daily struggles are the ones that I relate to the most.
Now…let’s go out and spread more love! As a blogger or social media influencer, YOU are the voice of our generation and can influence people on how they should love their bodies and accept who they are. If we encourage a fad diet, diet pills, working out all the time, what does that add to society? Nothing. It tells those two thirteen year old girls that I saw this weekend that their bodies have to be a certain way in order to live a happy life.
What are your thoughts on body positivity?
Thanks for reading Elle’s Edit. If you have any topics that you would like for me to discuss, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to hear from you! xo