I was just on the Victoria’s secret website and I’ll confess, while I’m not a big girl, who can’t help but compare themselves to these waif looking women with long legs and arms that grace the website in teeny weeny clothing.
We can say well, not everyone is supposed to be that thin. We can say it’s in their genes. We can also say that they don’t have to do anything to look like that. In that same token, we can also lie to ourselves.
I’ll never forget when I was an event coordinator and we auditioned models for a Vera Wang clothing panel. A young girl about 5’10 tried on one of the outfits, this girl might have been 110 soaking wet and it was suggested she shouldn’t eat until the show. I decided then and there I really couldn’t continue working in that field because the chatter between the stylist and the event choreographer made me feel sick. The idea this girl might be too big was so ludicrous it made me take a second look at my own body regardless of all the self-confidence I’d been spoon fed.
Today’s world is much more difficult on women then it ever was before due to the amount of technology we are exposed to. Never before was it so easy to compare yourself OR have yourself compared with models and women whose main source of income is based on how they look. Not only is it not realistic, it’s the gateway to poor self-image and warped expectations which all lead to greater objectification.
How can we look in the mirror and feel sane again without a series of self-talk and affirmations so we feel we have value too? Being fit and lifting weights helped me come to terms with my body and accept myself for who I was. It was a long time struggle with weight loss, weight gain, self-image and self-examination.
I really feel the shift towards strength, largely attributed to being fit. Though I don’t cross fit I feel the sport itself has helped us reimagine strength and fitness for women. It has really shifted the lens with which we are looking at women’s bodies and our own mirror images. I can only hope that the future holds more female depicting strength than the 0 waistlines we see today.