There is a big problem in society that I have fallen victim too, as well as many others I know and love. It’s called, “vanity.” Men and women alike are told from birth that they need to go to school, go to college, have experiences, travel, get a good job, get married, buy a home, have a family, strive for a vacation once or twice a year, strive for more money… etc. To make it worse, we over expose our accomplishments and experiences on social media for people to see, “like”, comment, and ultimately compare themselves to us.
Is that what we’re striving for? Shouldn’t we speak love and life to others? I understand it is wonderful to share memorable events with friends and family, but if you prerogative is to gain “likes,” perhaps you need to evaluate why that is your motivation to post a status or picture.
What are you lacking internally that is making you having these thoughts and actions? If you are getting your self-worth from social media or compliments, you need to ask yourself if you are measuring your self-worth by your appearance or people’s reactions to the life you portray on social media? Talented, funny, good-hearted, hard-working, loving, compassionate you. All of the adjectives I could use to describe so many of my loved ones, I truly hope that’s not how you measure your worth. If that is the case, this would be a wonderful time to sit in meditation and ask yourself why you feel this way. Perhaps its an expectation society has held you too? Whatever it is, go over in your mind what other wonderful characteristics you possess. Shift your thinking and mindset to accommodate positive changes.
Returning to the subject of vanity, I am particularly zoning in on the beautiful women I see all over Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat. I watched a video about an Instagram model who quit social media because she was completely “empty” inside. I found this to be very inspiring and brave, considering she went on to reveal she spent hours getting ready for photoshoots or selfies, taking multiple shots for the “perfect selfie,” and starving herself to look a certain way. Is being a slave to social media, or to your body image, worth it? Is it living? Shouldn’t we indulge in God, experiences, culture, food, social events/situations, relationships, books, nature?… Even our own 9-5 job is better than being a slave to a screen that plays high-light reels.
Women. Hear me loud and clear. It is not your job, nor do you owe it to anyone, especially society, to be pretty, polite, maternal, loving, hospitable or anything for anyone. If you are not what society deems as, “naturally beautiful,” it’s still not your job to “fit the mold” of what a woman should look like, nor is it your job to amount to society’s standards of how a women should be, think, and act. It’s whatever makes you feel good. Do I forgo makeup everyday? No. I wear it most weekdays because it does make me feel good. It is not much effort for me to put on. But I am getting at the girls who are afraid to leave their homes without it. You should never be dependent on something so materialistic. Have I ever no worn makeup? Yes. Most weekends. And let me tell you, I have been told I “look tired,” or that I “don’t look the same, are you sick?” (literally this has happened), and it is so empowering.
No I am not as “pretty” without makeup. I have acne scars and discoloration on my cheeks from my acne scars, dark circles under my eyes, black heads on my nose, and thin eye brows. It’s me. It’s beautiful. And also, who cares? Since when was I ever the center of the universe?
My point is… when you die, no one will miss how you looked. People will miss how you made them feel and the imprint you left in their lives. It’s time to start working on who we are as people, and stop working on how we look as people.
God bless and Namaste