“There must be something wrong with those people who think Audrey Hepburn doesn’t perspire, hiccup or sneeze, because they know that’s not true. In fact, I hiccup more than most.”
— Audrey Hepburn
I think this quote is perfect to start this whole post off. It speaks to the way our culture looks at celebrities now a days – with a sense that they are “perfection”. But what is perfection? Is it being skinny, and not having any fat on your body, because that can be deemed unhealthy? Is it perfect skin, where it is just hormonal and normal to have blemishes? Either way, we all seem to think that it is out there somewhere and is achievable, but since “perfection” is determined and made by society and therefore changes all the time, it isn’t really possible to achieve this ever-evolving way of life.
And more importantly, why do we aspire to be perfect? What is wrong with average and unique? I don’t know how it came to be, since I was raised to love myself as myself, but I still wanted to search for this “perfection” that everyone seemed to have except me. It always seemed to be a step ahead of me, but I later realized that it was impossible for me to grasp since I never saw myself as me. I never even saw me as average, so I had to learn to love myself, as my own perfect. I had to toss away any of my insecurities and doubts because the person I am is the perfect person and there’s no way I can change that into the ridiculous dream of perfection.
To be honest, I do know how it came to be that I dreamed of being “perfect”. Everybody is surrounded by this made-up perfection and the average person looks at 5000 advertisements a day! These ads are in charge of what the idea of perfect should be. They show what people should wear, how they should wear their make-up and how the clothes should fit on the model’s thin statured body. We see these pictures every day and are convinced that those pictures are the idea and truth of perfection. Women strive for the models’ bodies even if you have different body structures to them, instead of owning the idea of average and unique.
This may be because, unfortunately, average always seems to have a negative connotation to it.
“Who wants to just be average?”
“Average is boring!”
But since the view of perfection always changes in society, why can’t the view of average change as well? Back in the 1600’s and even earlier, voluptuous women were found attractive because it was beautiful that you looked well fed. Take it to the first half of the 1900’s where perfection was curves. Iconically displayed by Marilyn Monroe, having hips, a tiny waist and larger breasts were deemed attractive. And now we are here in the 2000’s where square shaped and very thin bodies are the perfection.
The idea of perfection and beautiful has changed so much due to society. So, I think that the average should change into becoming something where everyone is unique, even though that seems like a contradictory statement (how can you be average and unique at the same time?) But wouldn’t it be nice if the majority of the world was okay with being unique, that the average person was content being themselves rather than searching for this impossible target.
A lot of people don’t have this desire to be unique because of the fear of being noticed or being judged and therefore aiming for the current look of perfection, although non-existent, is a sense that will make you blend in. But, everyone is different so uniqueness is inevitable and therefore perfection is just a facade.
“When you stop expecting people to be perfect, you can like them for who they are.”
— Donald Miller
And isn’t this quote say exactly what everyone wants? But we just seem to go in the wrong direction to get it. We search for perfection so that everyone can look at us and accept us but they will never know the real person.
“If you look for perfection, you’ll never be content.”
— Leo Tolstoy
We need to acknowledge that the character of the person is more important than striving for the impossible goal of looks and the “perfection” of outside. Being unique is perfection because you are the perfect you; a better (or best) you and no one else can reach that perfection.
I hope that this all makes sense. I just realized how much I’ve changed since high school in the subject of loving myself. Imagine if our society and our culture promoted uniqueness instead of this impossible perfection, a lot of women, and men, would live a happier and stress free life. A life where it is possible to be content and be perfect in your own way. By no means do I have no doubts or insecurities. I still compare myself to other people that don’t and never will look anything like me. But, maybe that’ll never go away and I can still be happy with being unique at the same time.
Send you all my love,
P.S. Food for thought…