Am I Beautiful?

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The words rang in my ears...

“Learn how to be beautiful from the most beautiful women in the world.” I sat still and for some reason began to question this statement. I was twenty years old. Of course I had seen the average beauty advertisement before, but this time I couldn’t stop questioning. Why do I need to learn how to be beautiful? Am I not already? Why is there a select group of women deemed as the most beautiful? Why are they all celebrities? What do I have to do to receive such a title? Ultimately... 

Am I beautiful?

This one advertisement was the starting point of a lot of questioning, some anger, opened eyes, and a passion to speak about such issues. As children, we do not understand the impact of words much less the impact of countless media propagations that actually devalue us. The media has created a very narrow and inaccurate definition of beautiful, and we are all expected to measure up to this standard. The definition of beauty has become perfection, and most of us feel insecure because we can’t achieve such a standard.

Why is beauty something that we have to strive for?

Why do we feel the need to change who we are and what we look like to be accepted? But most importantly, why do we allow the media to define something that is found within us? Beauty should not be so narrowly defined as shape, color, and size. Beauty is found in who we are: what we value, what we believe, what we enjoy, our hobbies, our interests, and our ideas. We should not only find beauty in everyone’s unique appearance, but we should look much deeper than that. We should seek to understand what makes up an individual.

Beauty is actually beyond outer appearance. 

Beauty is even beyond ourselves. I would argue that beauty is a concept that we have yet to fully understand. Beauty is in the little things that make us happy. For me that would include a cup of tea accompanied by pen and paper, a warm climate with occasional snow, pretty sounds guided by heartfelt words, happiness captured in a photo, the laughter of a small child, and the nature that is all around.

Beauty should have no standard.

It should never be placed in a small box only to be confined, judged and compared. Beauty is found in our appearance, the world around us, and within us. How can we measure something that comes in so many different forms? More importantly, why should we measure beauty like it is some kind of contest? 

We should seek to understand, appreciate and inspire, and surely we will find beauty in these places.

 

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