Thin is in – or is it?

Things have changed - or have they?

Things have changed – or have they?

We all know that ‘thin is in’. Through movies, TV, adverts, magazines, billboards and the conventional side of the Internet, the media presents us with images of a world where 99 per cent of women wear their skin as near to their skeleton as they can get. Thin is beautiful. And so it is!

The reality is that we are a planet teeming with life. We are animals. We come in a variety of shapes and sizes and, thankfully, we also come programmed with what is essentially an uncontrollable sexual and aesthetic preference. For the sake of clarity if we ignore that, for most of us, attraction isn’t entirely physical, thin is beautiful to a percentage of the human population. What you don’t usually hear is that fat is beautiful to an equal number of people. And another group appreciates all the sizes in between fat and thin.

What we find beautiful is subjective. The media is trying its best to make it objective (Why? Well, it makes a lot of money for a lot of businesses.)

The fact is, if you find fleshy men or women more attractive than the more slender type, there is actually not a thing you can do about it. You can pretend in order to fit in. You can try to persuade yourself that you don’t like the bigger look so that you can remain cool in your own eyes or through the eyes of your peers. Which is what a lot of people do. They deny it, again because of the media pressure to accept a received appreciation of beauty.

Just like if you’re gay and pretending to be straight, this will make you miserable. All efforts to live up to an image that is not mirrored with what you actually feel will create an unhappy life. Truth has an annoying way of foisting itself upon you.

Despite the overwhelming coercion to take on a received idea of beauty, there are still many people out there who are intelligent and awake enough to prevent themselves from being anaesthetised by it. Happy and whole, who don’t feel they have to fit in or be cool or live in denial about what they are attracted to. Thank God for the Internet and the technology that means that we have a future where all voices can be heard.

I am not saying that the compulsive overeating that causes the storage of fat on the body for some people is something any of us would want to live with – because it is actually a very painful way to live. But the pressure to be almost skeletal is one of the direct causes of compulsive overeating and other eating disorders.

Imagine how wonderful the world would become for all of us if everyone were truthful about what they find attractive. Imagine if movies and TV and magazines and adverts reflected reality. Look around you and wake up to the real world. Everyone is different. Everyone likes different.

Why passively receive a message that makes you unhappy when you can be free? There is nothing more exhilarating than thinking for yourself. Self reliance and self trust increase self esteem and this makes you happy. External dependency, trying to fit in and approval addiction decrease self esteem and will cause you nothing but misery and emptiness.

Low self esteem is closely linked to compulsive overeating. Think about that.



*First published in 2009



4 thoughts on “Thin is in – or is it?

  1. Dinneen-Eat Without Guilt

    Love your message and I agree: ” Low self esteem is closely linked to compulsive overeating.” On a daily basis I help women lose weight and/or get healthy by changing their relationship with food. And part of the reason they have a dis-connect with food, is because of the way they think about themselves.

    The media affects all of us and our perception of ourselves. When you have better self-esteem, you look at not only your body differently, but food differently too. And your learn that being a size 2 will not make you happy.

    1. Hi Dineen,
      Thank you for your comment and for loving my message. Low self esteem is indeed closely linked to overeating and it is in fact a root cause, as you probably know. I have an instinctive understanding of how this process works and I know that raising self esteem is very important in the treatment of the problem.

      I wish you luck in your very valuable teaching.


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