I'm starting a little series called Thursday's 7. Every Thursday I'll share 7 things. To educate, entertain, help, wonder and love. I hope you'll enjoy it. If you've got some suggestion you'd like me to write about, leave them in the comments. Some will be short others will be a little longer like this. It'll be interesting to cover lots of subjects. Can't wait to begin!
I'll start the series with a rather heavy topic; 7 things we need to stop glorifying.
- youth - in the media, commercials, hollywood.. they all flood with young young people. I'm pretty sure over half the lotions we can buy nowadays advertise with being anti-wrinkle or anti-age. Why are we so afraid of getting old? Why do we take it as an insult if people think we look older than we are? Why do we take it as a compliment when people think we look younger than we are? Looking young or youthful isn't the only kind of beauty and it doesn't equal health nor success. We aren't outdated until we start acting like we are and letting it limit us.
- thinness and weight loss. (if you've struggled with ED; triggers may come, so if you're vulnerable in that area, proceed with caution or skip this part) Those times when I've lost weight enough for people to notice (compliment) it's usually because I had a period where I almost didn't eat. I remember one time, I was 17 and just started 1st year of gymnasium (the Danish school system is different from the US/UK, but it's a combo of high school and college) and I was crushing on this boy who mostly liked thin/"hot" girls. I never thought I'd measure up to his standards (turns out I didn't in the end, anyway, but that's another story), but a mix of wanting him to be attracted to me, falling in "love" and society's (stupid) beauty standards I managed to convince my mind and stomach that I didn't need to eat. I think I eat only around 25%-50% of what I normally eat and what probably should be healthy. Not. Healthy. At. All. I'm not gonna talk about how much I lost, but it was enough for people to start noticing - and complimenting me. I'm pretty sure the complimenters did it with their best intentions, but if you look at how and why I lost the weight (and I wasn't overweight btw) it wasn't healthy! And changing yourself for someone to like you. Then is it really you that they'll like? it's crazy that we live in a society and culture where not eating is considered culturally acceptable and not only that it's actually a great accomplishment. Not. Healthy. At. All. I've heard people losing a lot of weight during their chemo-treatment and receive compliments. I know people who live healthy normal lives and workout, but because they aren't thing enough for societies beauty standards they're considered "unhealthy".
We weren't put on this earth to be attractive to everyone. As a matter of fact, I'm pretty sure that's pretty impossible.
Wuah, can you tell I'm passionate about this? I've already deleted half of it and started a new blog post with my body image story. (That'll be up shortly!)
If you're struggling yourself can I recommend Megan Jaybe Crabbe? She made a video with Grace called "why is everyone so obsessed with being thin?" She's @bodyposipanda on instagram and has a blog. She also wrote a book. You can get on Amazon right here. (affiliate link). In my August favourites, I also talk a little about another brilliant bopo-babe Allison.
- depression + anxiety - it may be mostly in the teenage-culture and on Tumblr, but this needs to stop. Depression and anxiety are two very serious mental illnesses. Depression has killed people and anxiety have made people miserable for decades. It's not something to be glorified!
- making Hollywood the only types of success - being in Hollywood and on every front paper does not equal success and it does not mean you're happy. Earning big money or singing to huge crowds isn't the only types of success. Celebrities, musicians, actors etc. aren't "perfect" human beings, so let's stop worshipping them just because *everyone* knows their name. There's nothing wrong with being famous, but the society we live in worships them and put them on sky-high pedestals. Which isn't fair to anyone. No one can live up to those "perfect" standards. Success looks different to each person. We can define our own success. Doing what you love surrounded by who you love is a pretty good definition of success for me.
- getting wasted aka drunk - I had a friend of mine who didn't drink any alcohol at all. His classmates didn't get it, neither respected it, so they tried to trick him into drinking by "jumping" on him from behind and putting a beer bottle into his mouth. That's not okay. If someone said they didn't want cake we wouldn't try to stuff their mouths with cake, would we? Why is it so "glamorous" to drink yourself so drunk you barely have control over what you do? I've never really enjoyed alcohol and I've never been drunk. I've been stared at like I was crazy or being labelled as boring because I simply said "no thanks" when offered a beer. At a social event at my new school, we weren't allowed alcohol, one of my classmates argued he was a shy guy and couldn't open up and be social before he'd at least had a few beers. Really? So you're relying on alcohol to be social? For many people, fun & alcohol go hand in hand. I know people who can't have fun without alcohol. What a sad sad life. I've never been drunk and I've had plenty of fun. The best parties I've attended or hosted have been alcohol-free. And are the ones remembered! Bonus: no hangover.
If this somehow made a reaction in you - good or bad, you want to learn more about it or you want a perspective from someone who actually enjoys alcohol I highly recommend listening to Lucy Moon chat about alcohol, her relationship with it, being an alcoholic and going totally sober. I'll link 2 videos here and here.
- being busy - don't we all know that one person, who's always too busy. Or don't have time to meet up until the month after the next month *heavy eye roll*. I think this has so much to do with prioritizing. I don't get why people are busy. I understand there are seasons (i.g. having a newborn or preparing, preparing for a big exam etc.) where the resources and energy may not be on top, that's not what or when I'm talking about. Filling a schedule so full you don't have time to think or feel, just makes me wonder what you're running from? I wanna share I quote with you; "I don't say no because I'm busy, I say no because I don't want to be busy" (source). This is a quote I wanna live by. I also think this quote from Alice in Wonderland is brilliant: "the hurrier I go, the behinder I get". (source)
- numbers - whatever is in our bank account, the number of facebook "friends", the number on the weight scale or followers on social media. Numbers don't define us. No matter big or small. Someone isn't cooler or better just because they have 100 more friends on facebook or 10k more followers on instagram. Let's preach this to ourselves and our (future, at least for me though) kids!
I'd love to spark some conversation in the comments. What are your thoughts on this? Are there other things we as a society need to stop glorifying? Do you disagree with something I wrote? I'd love to hear your thoughts. Be kind, though!
That's all. Until next time..
// Line Thybo xx