Personality Cafe banner

1 - 20 of 52 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
977 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
It seems like there's so much coverage about feeling insecure about your body and how to feel more 'body positive'. Any conversation about how you feel about your body, I get the distinct impression that I'm supposed to not be happy with it if I want to be a part of this conversation, I can't just be happy. I'm not about to send nudes to anybody or make sex tapes. But I'm happy with my body.

I was thinking about it this morning when I got up and took a shower and was looking in the mirror. I like how my knees, hips and joints align perfectly. I like my curves. I like how my breasts are in proportion with my body and fit my aesthetics. I especially love my legs. I have to work very hard to keep my waist looking nice but my legs are amazing. I'm proud of my body and I'm happy with how I look.

The thing is, if you are a woman who is happy with her body, it very much feels like society is frowning on me. Any time a woman is happy with her body written as a character, she is vain and promiscuous and uses her sexuality to manipulate people. What's so wrong with a woman just liking her body? Why is it associated with negative character traits? I look after myself and put a lot of work into my diet and exercise. My mother started it and I never stopped, I've kept up what she started.

I have wondered it's a personality thing. There aren't a lot of ESTP women but it's common for us to put a lot of focus on diet and exercise. But also as a Se-dom, I believe I have an objective view of my body. I look fit, healthy and feminine. As far as I can tell, my body is beautiful. My face is above average in attractiveness, but I wouldn't rate it as highly, but I'm still pretty. But I get the strong impression that I'm not supposed to be happy with my body. I'm supposed to be on some never ending quest for perfection. I'm not a perfectionist and never have been.

If society always associates negative traits with women who are happy with their bodies, when will it be okay for women to be happy with their bodies? Which is it? Do we want women to look after our bodies and be happy with how we look? Or do we want to be distrustful of women who are happy with their bodies? Do we, as a society, even want women to be happy with their bodies?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
226 Posts
To get inspiration from the right mindset sometimes you have to go through a lot of ordeals and I, too, wish it was easier. If we grow up in an environment where most of the people we interact with display a negative attitude towards healthy body image, and instead are encouraged to be simply skinny rather than fit or stronger for instance, then it will be hard to not copy their behavior on a subconscious level. At very least, you will have to fight it. Take out of your head the idea that people do it because they are just mean. They're closed off, worried, stressed as well. As much as we love to think we're advanced, people believe in the pseudo-scientific market of face and body creams like there's no tomorrow. There are so little products that actually do what they promise that it's insane, yet people are still willing to pay for perfumed deception. Now we can afford and access for free scientific studies and articles that explain us what is going on a molecular level, so that we understand better that not everything that is oily affects what we think it affects, and that skin elasticity for instance will be regulated through other mechanisms...

It is essential that you seek methods to empower yourself, by in accessing what we do best: mimicking behaviors, either from nature, either from other people who have reached a state where they feel self-fulfilled. While not everyone feels attracted to doing sports 3 times a week and looking fit, I feel like saying that I disagree with you when it comes to people not appreciating healthy bodies. If you will pause and take a look, you may see that people who work on their bodies to improve stamina, resilience, flexibility, etc. are appreciated in every culture around the world, though there have been very sad times where women for example were not allowed to go outside the home or do forms of physical exercise that would increase their independence such as ride horses, sailing, etc.

I won't negate that we haven't had the horrific fashion industry promote anorexia and vitamin deficiency. It's a long chapter, but what i want to say now is that I believe people fail most often to understand is the process of getting there or obtaining a result, the way they link cause and effect.

There are entire industries built on throwing dust in the eyes of people. Even in pharmacology and with pharma companies, they will pay doctors to promote specific pills, regardless of them being the best option on the market or not. The same happens in the beauty industry if you go to dermatologists, nutritionists... hell, hairstylists, and so on and so forth. Sometimes the best cures and ways to happiness are simple and pertain to spending more time in nature for example, but with less and less "adepts" and individuals who fall into "honey traps" and consumerist caveats, it will become harder to enjoy peaceful moments without people thinking you're doing it the wrong way.

External beauty isn't a guarantee for not having other diseases or problems, won't pave your way to a successful career, personal fulfillment, or make you more intelligent if previously you were an idiot, but it does appeal to our need of symmetry, or as a reminder of beauty ideals and standards that we ourselves tend to forget in our daily struggles. Most people (especially males) can't even tell when someone is wearing make-up or have had cosmetic surgeries, unless they are specifically looking for it.

Can you describe more in detail a specific episode where you feel like people don't appreciate you wanting to maintain a healthy body?

The worst unhealthy body culture to me is that of drinking, smoking, doing drugs, high heels, and uncomfortable bags/purses and footwear. It's to do with the skeleton, joints, internal organs, lungs... Through promoting these values and seeing them as fine, through frowning on those who don't feel like spending every weekend in a club, and through looking at those who do as superior, we are doing one of the biggest deservices to our society.

The second big de-service state is that of unhealthy workplaces where people can barely enjoy their meal break without rushing or go to the bathroom. Where they can't sit up and do some exercises or stretch to feel better, or take a breath of fresh air and stay in the sun for a couple minutes. If they do want to sit up every 50 minutes and do exercise, they may be seen as crazy, perhaps even questioned by superiors, on the lines of "what, this job too hard to you, you need a break?". That is extremely toxic and counter productive, and people saying such things should be forced to do public service. Offices should have fresh air or some plants in them. There are so many things wrong and so much wrong done everyday I can't even start to put my finger on it. I never understood why we've historically condemned ourselves/each other to such lives of slavery, with such horrible effects on our minds and bodies, but the road to betterment is rather slow, and not very promising unless you have the emotional and financial resources to fight and impose your view, or refuse those toxic places where human rights and happiness are optional.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
375 Posts
Maybe it has to do with everyone has there "type" and unless women became shipshafters that instantly shapeshifted based on someones type that was looking at them then no! :p

But as a serious answer you could give society the bird. if you've met what youve viewed as "objectively good" and youre happy then just enjoy :)
 

·
Registered
INTP
Joined
·
3,909 Posts
OP, you're coming from a place where you are attractive by society's standards. But you still say you have to work very hard at it. What if you couldn't--for example if you couldn't exercise during an illness or after surgery? Or if you lived in a situation where you couldn't always eat healthy? Would you love your thick waistline or flabby legs?

And we all get older. At what point will you freak out about a wrinkle or a gray hair? And after that, saggy jowls and thinning/breaking hair? How about after a mastectomy? Will you really be happy with your body then?

There are women who don't have the ideal looks, but truly love themselves. They have a confidence that others find attractive. I think that's what the whole conversation about loving your body is about. Women want to have that kind of self-love and confidence. As in, "Okay, I'll never be [whatever], but I deserve respect and love, and I'm happy." Instead of "My life will be okay after I lose this weight."
 

·
Registered
ISFP
Joined
·
2,239 Posts
I believe I’ve been told by my female coworkers that women “don’t do it [get pretty] for guys” but for other women. Like its a competitive thing.

Any chance that could be a factor in how you feel? Like staying content may leave you in the dust of racing competitors?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,116 Posts
"Society" is not a hive-mind; societies are made up of individual people. There is no "what society wants." Different people want different things, and there are a million different societies on Earth.

I've never noticed any association between negative personalty traits and satisfaction with one's body, but, even if I had, I see no reason to assume that fictional characters have anything to do with anyone's attitude towards reality, and I see no reason to assume that the negative personality traits have anything specific to do with satisfaction with one's body. In other words, X trait isn't necessarily related to Y trait just because a fictional character has both traits.
 

·
Registered
ENFP
Joined
·
4,195 Posts
It all goes back down to money... all of these advertising agencies would be out of jobs if it weren't for finding ways to make people feel insecure just to make a buck or two.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
977 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Can you describe more in detail a specific episode where you feel like people don't appreciate you wanting to maintain a healthy body?
Not exactly what I'm saying. People appreciate maintaining a healthy body, they don't like it when you're healthy and happy with it. And it's not specific episodes. It's an attitude. If a woman is comfortable with her body, it generally doesn't go over well. It's a fast track to people labeling you with negative stereotypes.

You used clubs and heels as an example. I don't wear heels all the time and when I do, I carry ballet slippers in my purse to change into. I normally dance in a professional capacity, going out to a club with friends, is fun because I don't have a choreographer to please and I'm not there to work on a specific skill set. I just get to dance. There are stereotypes, at least in America about women going out to clubs or just wearing heels. Two things associated with women confident with their bodies are also associated with promiscuity and being unhealthy. I've done a lot more damage to my feet in ballet than a couple of hours wearing heels will do once or twice a month.

A woman with a healthy body and happy with it, isn't well received.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
977 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Maybe it has to do with everyone has there "type" and unless women became shipshafters that instantly shapeshifted based on someones type that was looking at them then no! :p

But as a serious answer you could give society the bird. if you've met what youve viewed as "objectively good" and youre happy then just enjoy :)
That's not what concerns me. It's the hypocrisy of pressure to look pretty but don't you dare be aware that you're attractive. Because if you look good and know you look good, people are going to look for a reason to bring you do. You're shallow, a gold digger, slutty, something. But you can't just be a healthy, happy woman. That would be wrong.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
977 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
OP, you're coming from a place where you are attractive by society's standards. But you still say you have to work very hard at it. What if you couldn't--for example if you couldn't exercise during an illness or after surgery? Or if you lived in a situation where you couldn't always eat healthy? Would you love your thick waistline or flabby legs?

And we all get older. At what point will you freak out about a wrinkle or a gray hair? And after that, saggy jowls and thinning/breaking hair? How about after a mastectomy? Will you really be happy with your body then?

There are women who don't have the ideal looks, but truly love themselves. They have a confidence that others find attractive. I think that's what the whole conversation about loving your body is about. Women want to have that kind of self-love and confidence. As in, "Okay, I'll never be [whatever], but I deserve respect and love, and I'm happy." Instead of "My life will be okay after I lose this weight."
That's not relevant to my point though. I'm happy for people finding acceptance for their bodies. That's great. I support that. What I'm taking issue with, is the prevalence of negative stereotypes against women who are physically attractive and know they are. To a certain degree, the same happens to men. But you would never see a writer feel the need to say that their male character was attractive but didn't know it. Meanwhile, if a woman knows she's attractive, what a bitch. I've seen this in books, movies, scripts. We want people to be healthy and comfortable with their bodies, but if they reach that point, let's take them down a peg or two.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
977 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
I believe I’ve been told by my female coworkers that women “don’t do it [get pretty] for guys” but for other women. Like its a competitive thing.

Any chance that could be a factor in how you feel? Like staying content may leave you in the dust of racing competitors?
In my industry, looks are very important. I grew up dancing competitively and haven't stopped and intend to keep my competitive edge. Being happy with my body doesn't mean stopping at any point.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
977 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
It all goes back down to money... all of these advertising agencies would be out of jobs if it weren't for finding ways to make people feel insecure just to make a buck or two.
I'm not spending a fortune on my health or trying to buy it. So no, it doesn't come down to money here.
 

·
Registered
ISFP
Joined
·
2,239 Posts
Right now it sounds like you’re dealing with haters. Everyone runs into haters, they come and go. The more prevalence you have, the more haters you can encounter all at once. Consider it a measure of your success, and a reason to be able to defend yourself.

I believe confidence is important to have, and more people need it. Don’t surrender your confidence to anyone. Avoid pride, but keep confidence.
 

·
Registered
INTP
Joined
·
3,909 Posts
That's not relevant to my point though. I'm happy for people finding acceptance for their bodies. That's great. I support that. What I'm taking issue with, is the prevalence of negative stereotypes against women who are physically attractive and know they are. To a certain degree, the same happens to men. But you would never see a writer feel the need to say that their male character was attractive but didn't know it. Meanwhile, if a woman knows she's attractive, what a bitch. I've seen this in books, movies, scripts. We want people to be healthy and comfortable with their bodies, but if they reach that point, let's take them down a peg or two.
Okay, that makes sense. What @YearseRayneDon said is right. Haters gotta hate.

I'm not beautiful, but I do play down my strengths, accomplishments, etc., because people will try to trip me up, prove me wrong, whatever.

I knew a woman who ran a school. She said she would just tell people she "worked at" a school; otherwise they turned nasty.
 

·
Registered
I Thimk INTP
Joined
·
14,151 Posts
I'm a male and I can tell you how I feel about a woman looking good. It doesn't matter what the woman looks like, short of severe health problems. It's what is evident in how she takes care of herself. If she does, I assume she does want to appear her best and I can respect that. I'm happy with a woman who wants to appear her best.

It's more complicated than that though. I can appreciate natural movie star beauty. But if I were a suitor I would want a woman suitable for me, on my level in some sense so I don't have to deal with an uneven match.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
13,604 Posts
It all goes back down to money... all of these advertising agencies would be out of jobs if it weren't for finding ways to make people feel insecure just to make a buck or two.
And the cosmetics and diet industry. Probably even the fashion industry to a degree.
 
1 - 20 of 52 Posts
Top