I have to keep reminding myself that beauty is a socially constructed phenomenon that is constantly changing. There was a time when it was considered beautiful to be overweight ( by today’s standards). There was a time when it was considered beautiful to have small feet. There was a time when it was beautiful to be short.
What all of these measures of beauty have in common are the fact that they are out of our control. Our weight, height, and the size of our feet is completely out of our control. While we can do things to change our weight temporarily, in most cases the weight will eventually come back. Similarly, some people just have a bigger frame. This doesn’t mean that they are “fat”, it just means that their genes are different than the ideal size 0 body type.
This is important for me to remember because I am constantly judging my body for not being skinny. I have idealized skinny as a connotation of beauty which has resulted in poor self-esteem and body dissatisfaction. I am constantly struggling with the urge to return to my restrictive diet in an attempt to control my weight even though I know that this would mean sacrificing my mental and physical health. One of the triggers for this urge to lose weight is my constant need to compare myself to other people. I often find myself comparing myself to my friends and even people that I see in the media. However, recently I can across a video by Laura Lejuene that inspired me to stop comparing myself to others. While I haven’t been 100% successful yet, I can at least catch myself when I am doing it which can help me stop the comparison.