As with each blog post, I wait for the subject matter to find me and let the idea manifests itself. The idea will crescendo until I can’t ignore it any longer and have to begin writing. This week’s subject matter was not something that I was going to write about as I didn’t feel it was suitable. However, the urge has become stronger and stronger and I am therefore given no choice but to put it down on ‘paper’ if only to bring peace to my mind.
Being a fan of Netflix, I opt to watch that over television simply as it is more fulfilling than the watching-it-because-it’s-on-television syndrome, which I am at times guilty of. However, recently I had the good fortune to stumble across Hulu. I haven’t used it for years and I remember never being overly impressed with it. Things have changed. I decided to have a sneaky peek and as I scrolled down I was overjoyed to find a genre which was British. As I held my finger down on the remote to view the approximate four hundred and fifty shows, I was jumping up and down with joy! So, to cut a long story short I found a show that I loved to watch back in England and the familiarity brought back some forgotten memories. Watching it now has given me an insight that had never occurred before because I, like so many other women was a perfect candidate to take heed of the content.
Seven words. Gok Wan. How to Look Good Naked.
He’s someone that you would imagine would get on with everyone. He’s someone that you’d want to spend a night out with, swilling a few cocktails and laughing profusely. He has a conscious, but a far greater unconscious way of knowing exactly what to say to build confidence in a way like no other. Women LOVE him and yes, I’d very much like him as my best friend.
What does he do? He works with women who have low self-esteem and hate ( yes I said hate) their bodies. There was one episode where a woman had not looked in a full length mirror for fifteen years. How did we get to the stage of being so ashamed of our natural form that we end up taking such extreme measures to avoid any acceptance and pride of our bodies no matter what shape or size? How is it we can think, ‘How could anybody possibly love me when I look like this?’
Females rarely get to see what another ‘real’ woman looks like but this show provides plenty of reality. With five natural women ready in their undies sized from small to large he asks where the subject believes she fits in the line-up. It amazed me how every single woman on every single episode has such a distorted view of herself. I can almost guarantee every woman would overestimate their size, it’s just tragic. The models and celebrities that are prevalent in the media are the only comparable source we have which of course is the most damaging because that’s not your average shape. Having read a number of interviews with him he states in one:
“I think the media and the fashion industry make a huge impact – women are exposed to over 3,000 images a week of models airbrushed to within an inch of their lives.”
That is tremendous number – no wonder females have issues!
As I watched I, like many others have no real comparison of my own body than to that of models. It’s also not helpful when you observe women in public because lumps and bumps can be surreptitiously hidden. To be able to see all the different shapes and sizes has made me re-evaluate how I view myself. The show has been a real comfort because I realize what I have is what everyone else has and I’m beginning to wonder what all the fuss about ‘this part’ or ‘that part’ actually was. For someone who hasn’t had an overly healthy relationship with food particularly in my teens, naturally it went hand in hand with a very negative perception of my body.
I was surprised at the opinions of the men who were interviewed and asked to give their thoughts on the most attractive part of the subject’s figure. They don’t co-inside with what women tend to like about themselves. I became aware not only of how damaging a lack of confidence of self-image can be on a relationship but how you feel about yourself is not what others see. It’s a simple concept yet so difficult to digest.
“There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful, than a woman being unapologetically herself; comfortable in her perfect imperfection. To me, that is the true essence of beauty.”
– Steve Maraboli