Okay, so I do not use tumblr, but a lot of tumblr overlaps with Pinterest. There are these things called “just girly things”. Here is my problem, many of them are contradicting and completely ridiculous. Like the one below on the right. This, this is purely encouraging girls to become obsessed with wanting “those abs”, “those legs”, “those boobs”, and saying how you are is not good enough. NO. NO. NO. I am all for eating healthy and exercising, however doing cross fit 2 hours a day, which is not good for you, or running an unhealthy amount of kilometres a week is unhealthy. It makes me so mad that girls are so obsessed with exercise and then document it on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram every friggen time they exercise. I am not saying all obsessed people post about it, but many do and frankly I don’t care how much you exercise, I am not saying “hey go eat a cake every night and never exercise”, what I am criticizing is our view of healthy. Yes, obesity has gone up, yes this is a problem, well then maybe we need to try to change the way we view healthy. Back to this other side of this whole “just girly things” none sense. It slaps us in the face with the picture on the left, “beauty comes in all sizes”….wait, so we can be happy with the size we are? What? Give me some clarification! I understand that it is normal to always be trying to lose a little weight, eat a bit healthier, add some exercise. But I think people, especially girls, often neglect that you can be healthy and have other hobbies too; reading, writing, art, crafts, watching TV (this is an awesome way to wind down), hanging out with friends, cooking, music, dancing randomly, telling jokes, Pinteresting, watching funny cat videos, or like me attempting to find a cure to allergies and spread the love for your body through this blog. I makes me sick to see people close to me so beautiful and amazing think they need to starve themselves and workout for two hours to be “good enough” for everyone in their lives. We need to teach the balance of healthy eating, exercising and hobbies to everyone. Really, you only need 30 minutes of hard core awesomeness (yes I am including yoga) to get a good daily dose of endorphins. We need to teach everyone that it is OK not to have a flat stomach, it is OK to take a second helping once in awhile (ladies you know what I’m talkin’ about), it is OK not be as good at your hobby as someone else. You are the only person that knows how to do you and some these “just girly things” are far too obsessed with looks and are followed by many young minds that are still being moulded and are unfortunately caught in the trap of obsession with attaining the perfect body.
P.S nothing against the blogger of “just girly things”
On my internet excursions today, you know since my life consists of Buzzfeed, Desperate Housewives and chocolate. Anyhoo my mother’s friend came across this article about a documentary called “Embrace” that an Australian mother is trying to fundraise for in order to teach women to love their bodies.
A large part of this message is to teach our younger generation to embrace what they don’t like about their bodies and focus on what is great about them. Just like I Am That Girl, women need to support each other in every way possible. The competitiveness with the world of women is prominent, but we need to start embracing everyone and supporting every type of women. For example, an outdoorsy kinda gal might feel superior to the girl that is an avid reader and the avid reader might feel superior to the sports girl. However, I think this competitiveness is the root cause of low self esteem thus distorted body image that the director of “Embrace” Taryn Brumfitt is going to convey. I truly hope this documentary is viewed by the millions across the country because it could be a stepping stone to truer advertising and possibly inspire the entertainment industry to portray women differently, as this is where a lot of young girls get their perceptions of the “ideal women”. If we could all possibly know that what we see on TV and in Hollywood is their sole job to look good, but we also need to portray that that IS their job. Just as it is a doctor’s job to save lives, just as it is a hairstylist’s job to make hair look good, just as it is a teacher’s job to teach math, and a producer’s job find things to put on TV.
Here is the link to the article about “Embrace”: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/14/embrace-taryn-brumfitt_n_5318178.html?utm_hp_ref=fb&src=sp&comm_ref=false
In my years as a person, and especially a girl, I have fallen guilty to judging others. My mother has always taught me that you don’t have to like everyone, but you also don’t have to show that you don’t like them. Meaning there is no need to express your dislike in any form. Which, is where my biggest learning years come in. In grades 4-8, I learned many things about girl drama and gossip. First of all gossip will come back to bite you in the butt. In short, if you say something about someone make sure you can say it to their face. This is when I learned that I needed to keep my trap shut about things I found annoying about my then best friend.
Which brings me to my relationship with my then best friend. So, this girl I have known for what is now going on 16 years. She was my best friend, we had ups and downs, big astronomical fights, but I never once hated her, I never once lost my love for her. It was weird because after grade 9 we lost touch, we were civil and admittedly I don’t forget the things that annoyed me to death about her. But I do remember the years the two of us were bullied to the point of not wanting to go school, all because we were judged for hanging out together and having loads of fun while other girls were doing God’s knows what with their free saturdays. But, when I got into high school these childhood bullies stopped bullying me, but I never forget that they judged me for who I hung out with. I am still judged for who I hang out with, who I am nice too, who I laugh with in public. The truth is I can see why all the “popular” girls I skated with thought I was weird, I didn’t hang out with the “popular” group even though I easily could have. Which brings me to the idea of those who judged me. I feel bad for people who judge a person on their personality based on who they associate with, because, as cliche as it is, it is THEIR problem what they think not yours. When I do things by myself or with kind of “unique people” I try not to care what people think of me. In university I found that no one cares, people will judge you, but it is what you do with your perception of the judgers that creates your perspective of yourself. Plus, if your friends with someone who judges others harshly you may wonder what they think you, but the kind of judging I am not taking about is “oh my god that girl needs a bra” (this is not harsh judging, just the truth), it is the negative connotations where people bully and knowingly ignore people just because of their judgement of you not because they actually know you. A piece of advice, judging is part of human wiring, we all naturally judge people, it is what you do with your judgement that shapes your character, so if you want to ruin someones life, go ahead. However, in most cases it is best to just keep your negative judgements to yourself.
It has come to my attention that I have blogged about actresses such as Sophia Bush and Shailiene Woodley who represent one spectrum of the body image talk in hollywood. On the other end is Mindy Kaling, another woman that has a great, inspiring view on body image. Kaling brings another perspective and has had some great quotes about how she feels about body image and has responded to comments that she is completely accepting of her body. She said:
“I’m also the recipient of a lot of backhanded compliments about it, where people are like, ‘It’s so nice that Mindy Kaling doesn’t feel she needs to subscribe to the ideals of beauty that other people do.’ And I’m like, I do subscribe. They’re like, ‘It’s so refreshing that Mindy feels comfortable to let herself go and be a fat sea monster!’ By the way, I run and work out. It takes a lot of effort to look like a normal/chubby woman.
This quote is a rather true quote of many women. I mean, who isn’t trying to stay fit but also look normal. She also brings up the point that you don’t need to be super model skinny to have a great life. And its totally true. I understand that hollywood projects her image in a more marginalizing fashion, like “how are you so confident in your own skin”, well why wouldn’t she be? In this quote she perfectly outlines that double standard brought on to her. And she is right about the white males being asked about their actual work. Have you ever realized that women always get asked about their confidence and self esteem? Here is her quote are double standards.
“There are little Indian girls out there who look up to me, and I never want to belittle the honor of being an inspiration to them. But while I’m talking about why I’m so different, white male show runners get to talk about their art. I always get asked, ‘Where do you get your confidence?’ I think people are well meaning, but it’s pretty insulting. Because what it means to me is, ‘You, Mindy Kaling, have all the trappings of a very marginalized person. You’re not skinny, you’re not white, you’re a woman. Why on earth would you feel like you’re worth anything?’”
Do I wish I looked like week 20, not at all. This picture bothers me to no end. Why the hell is society promoting this tiny little waist and completely flat abs when this is impossible, unless you don’t eat. Yes, this girl looks beautiful in both photos, but when I pinned this on my health board with my little rant underneath I had to erase the words “skinny fat to healthy and toned”. Why in the name of cupcakes is the first photo not healthy? I look pretty damn close to week one and love my body. I love what it is capable of, what my mind is capable of, what my fingers are capable of, that I can paint, draw, read, learn, and express. I am in no way attempting to bash this beautiful unnamed girl in this photo, but I am attempting to bash societies perception of a healthy body. Is it so bad that I don’t have defined rock hard abs? No. You know what’s bad, if I don’t get an education or if I don’t pass my exams or if I don’t figure out my life soon, not if I have rock hard abs. In fact that is at the bottom of my list of priorities. Frankly if I could get rid of my allergies my life would be set. I think the world would be a better place if we promoted overall health instead of the physique it creates.
On the Today show this morning Sophia Bush had some insightful things to say regarding body image. Okay, so I know so far the bulk of my posts have been about Sophia Bush and her amazing view on life. But, when you look back to One Tree Hill you would never look at Brooke and think “hey what an activist” until the later seasons. She said that it took her until now, at age 31, to be completely okay with her body and has accepted that she was born that way, just as a rail thin 6-foot model was born that way. My question is how come more mainstream tabloids and news stations have not picked up on her message? How come I Am That Girl is not prominent in Canada?