Stop the Photoshop

by Amanda W.

photoshop1Please don’t compare yourself to photos in the fashion magazines. Please don’t compare yourself at all, to anyone. These days, unrealistic images are everywhere. Even photos on Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat can be, and are encouraged to be, easily changed with image editing apps and filters. It is almost always assumed that cover girls, models and celebrities are photoshopped. But knowing this doesn’t make it ok that this impossible standard is out there, everywhere, bombarding us with what is supposed to be “perfect” and chipping away at our self-esteem. It needs to stop.

There is no quick solution to stop what is presented as ideal. We could stop buying the products that promote unrealistic body image or we could protest for change. But the real change needs to come from within ourselves. We need to stop LETTING these images and companies tell us what we are “supposed” to look like. Don’t set yourself up to fail. We are all different, we are all amazing in different ways. Be beautiful in your own way, not theirs.

I have spent a good deal of time and energy trying to adhere to the strict and unattainable body image that is presented to girls and women. And it is futile. Instead of worrying about what I look like, I have started focusing on who I am and what I can do, particularly what I can do to help others realize this hard-won revelation. I’m not saying eat garbage all day and don’t exercise. I am saying please be good to your body; Your body will help you do all those amazing things you want to do. Feed it healthy things, as healthy food gives you energy. Be active in a way that fuels your love of that activity. Be yourself and be proud of who you are. Embrace the things about yourself that make you different and focus on your strengths. We all have things about ourselves we would like to change, but the key is to not waste your time trying to be impossible. Present your true self to the world in real life and on social media. Love who you are and live for the possible.

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