This is your new decade reminder that you don’t have to subscribe to anyone else’s imposed standards. Your beauty, power, and success are not about anyone or anything external, it’s about YOUR mindset. But you may need to step back, look inward, and redefine what that means for you.
I know you know this, but it’s worth reminding you that many of the body, beauty, and success standards that exist today were set by a bunch of white guys 70+ years ago. Not to mention those standards are impossible to meet. Even the women who look like their meeting them are actually not. They are most likely hungry, self-medicating, and faking it for the gram.
The idea of women owning conversations about their bodies, beauty, and success is relatively new. So much so, the beauty and fashion industry are struggling to keep up and respond to the demands for more inclusive products and advertising. Even with all these positive shifts, we still judge ourselves based on what men prefer, what the media tells us, or even what we believe other women will find acceptable.
It’s time for a change.
Being body positivity means “accepting the body you have as well as the changes in shape, size, and ability it may undergo due to nature, age, or your own personal choices throughout your lifetime. It’s the understanding that your worth of and what’s going on with you physically are two separate entities — that no matter what’s happening inside, outside, or to your body, you’re still just as worthwhile as the person next to you.”
As the body-positive movent grows, it’s receiving the same kind of backlash that the feminist movement got in the ’70s and ’80s. Just like how feminism is not about hating men, body positivity is not about ignoring your health or never making changes to your body. The movement is about loving yourself and your body no matter what shape it is in — setting the standard for yourself that you will live in the body you have and dress in clothes you love. To be body positive means to listen more to your inner voice than outer voices. You are not too skinny, too tall, too short, too fat. You are perfect the way you are. Any changes you make to your body are for your satisfaction, health, and well-being. With that in mind, how do you want to show up in your skin to express your true and best self?
Standards of beauty are constantly evolving. Not so long ago long, straight textured blonde hair, fair skin, and blue eyes were the pinnacle of beauty. In 2019 for the first time, five out of the six major beauty pageant crowns went to women of color.
This cultural shift represents our ability to re-examine definitions of beauty and release ourselves from old standards that no longer serve us, allowing us to move toward a more inclusive future. Acknowledging the ever-growing and mutable forms of beauty, how do you go about setting your own personal beauty standards? Where do they come from, what matters to you, and what makes you feel good?
How do you define success? Is it a pile of money, a lofty title at work, or a partner and family. Every generation seems to redefine success. Often the next generation is unfairly judged if they don’t subscribe to the success measures of the previous generations.
“The 2019 definition of success suggests a more comprehensive and balanced view. It’s more about “thriving” overall and a greater desire for wider positive social impact.”
I am sure your parents and grandparents, maybe even your peers, have lots of opinions about your level of success based on things they value, but what do you love? How are creating more space to figure out what you love or do more of what you love? When you are 50, 60, or 70, what are the things you will be able to look back on and appreciate that made your heart sing? Coach John Wooden once said, “Success is peace of mind, which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you made an effort to do your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming.”
Who are you at your best? What are the elements that make up the best version of your life and hat standards will help get your there
It’s easy to read a blog post and feel encouraged in the moment. But tomorrow, when you wake up, will you stay energized enough to set new and empowering standards for yourself that will move you forward in your life?
Grab your journal, or copy and paste this into the notes section on your phone. Answer these questions for yourself and set your standards for the new decade.