I've been really confessional lately. Sorry I can't help it. I love love love Pinterest. I'm a visual person and I find it a very helpful tool to organize my visual refs and things that inspire me. It's a good tool for those who love to make treasure maps or vision boards. I like to see how I can use chalkboard paint or how an old t-shirt can become a new tank top. The only issue I have is that when it comes to body image, Pinterest is a total downer. All those photos of the most perfect body parts, hairstyles, painted nails and arched eyebrows can make a girl feel really inadequate.
Social media in general can be a bit depressing. Twitter is all about being clever, hip and in the "know". It what's fast and hot and right this second. Many find Facebook depressing after "friends" share their amazing vacation photos or relationship statuses. If only Facebook would allow me to chose my status as "in a complicated relationship with myself." Regardless of your social media preference, comparison = depression. I've quoted Miss Vanzant in this blog before but it doesn't get any more true than this: "Comparing yourself to anyone is an act of violence against yourself." That is a very serious statement. I can't say I feel "violent" but I don't feel good. It doesn't feel good when I compare myself to the impossible round buttocks of a Brazilian fitness model. In an act of non-violence we could all do the following:
1. Know that what you are looking at might not actually be real. That perfect posterior, flawless face or 6-pack could be photoshopped.
2. Focus on your strengths. Even models have one or two features that are not perfect. I advise that we all put our best features in the front of our minds.
3. Think of jealousy as a teacher. What I'm jealous of is exactly what I want. If I want better arms then I need to do more push-ups with perfect form. I'm all for looking your best just not being obsessed.
4. Follow only positive Pinners. Most of the Pinners I follow do not share degrading photos of women. Christy Inge, who is also a positive body image warrior, has some really beautiful and inspiring pins.
5. Beauty is subjective no one can define what it is exactly. We each get to create our own version of beauty.