Anyone else feel like their Instagram feeds are just full of semi-naked people? I’m all about nudity being an art form etc etc, but I feel like I need to remind people sometimes that they can post about different art forms too. And then there are all of the fitness gurus whose entire accounts involve taking pictures of themselves in varied states of undress to showcase their abs and arms and “booty gains.”
I feel like in America, there is only one kind of nakedness, sexual, when in fact there are many: innocent, vulnerable, authentic; however, nudity has become synonymous with sexiness, and social media continues to propagate this idea that sexiness equals perfection.
Does anyone else think it’s odd that it’s become more commonplace to see someone on social media with clothes off than on? I feel like sexy has become the only value attributed to photos and videos. I just saw a girl wearing sexy lingerie, drinking orange juice, overlooking the Tour Eiffel, perched in a way to perfectly accent her figure, all by herself. I’m sorry. Have you ever known anyone to sit and drink orange juice super sexy by herself just for the fun of it? Some of these photos are absolutely beautiful, but they have become the standard by which we judge ourselves. Drinking orange juice in comfy pajamas seems less Instagram worthy because it isn’t sexualized.
There is absolutely a place for being, feeling, and looking like Aphrodite, but it seems to be the only part people want to showcase on social media. Where is the real life? Why are we so reluctant to show authenticity? Do we fear rejection?
This has created an impossible standard of perceived perfection, and it is crippling women into unparalleled states of self-deprecation. How many friends do you have that have struggled with eating disorders or body image issues? Because my answer is every single one. Social media and impossibly edited photos continue to make women feel inadequate and insecure.
Women are not only told by these photos that they are deficient physically but that they will most likely not find happiness unless they look like an Instagram model. Many of the photos swirling around the internet involve sexy men and women in an intimate embrace, and the subtext is that you will never find a relationship unless you look like one of them. This is simply not true. I am far from perfect and very happily married 🙂. In fact, it is my imperfections that bind me to my husband. Our strengths and weaknesses complement each other.
And newsflash: we have so many more attributes than just physical ones. The happiness of my relationship has a lot less to do with how we look and a lot more to do with how we feel. This is derived from our faith, purpose, pursuit of joy, family time, mental health, physical health, financial stability, and the list goes on. If we spent most of our time focusing on our physical appearance, we would be missing out on many other aspects of our life.
And so I encourage you to examine the role that physical appearance plays in your life. I used to value this above all other attributes, for myself and for my future partner, but I’m telling you ladies, empathy, intelligence, communication, and killer insurance benefits quickly become far more important than how chiseled his abs are 😜.