According to Psych Central, approximately 80% of women are dissatisfied with the way they look, and Men’s Fitness Magazine similarly reports that 44% of men aren’t happy with their bodies. There is obviously a trend in society of individuals believing their bodies aren’t good enough. Children now worry about being too fat or too skinny rather than just being healthy. We see pictures in magazines of the “perfect woman” or the “perfect man” and try to live up to this ideal, and thus are never satisfied with ourselves. And it’s not just about weight. People who have skin conditions are afraid to go out without makeup or clothing to hide it. Those who have thinning hair, for age or other reasons, are afraid to go out without wearing a wig or getting treatment to correct it. There are innumerable ways we believe ourselves to be “different” and try to hide this difference out of embarrassment or shame. This lack of self esteem can lead to the allowance of disrespect, hurtful speech, and can even lead to thoughts of suicide. People who don’t like themselves often believe they aren’t worthy of anything better and continually hurt themselves by accepting harmful circumstances, both physically and psychologically. This is why I think my group should support the cause of accepting who you are. There is a movement now to counteract the unrealistic body ideals that the media has presented. We see this through new magazine covers with all body types, commercials for clothing stores with people of all shapes and sizes pictured, and “no makeup” events that have garnered the support of celebrities through #nomakeup social media pictures. I believe, especially in college where finding and believing in yourself is so important, we should promote the belief that you only need to be the best version of you.
The cause of accepting who you are is already important to the campus of the University of Delaware. UD sororities have participated in this movement by allowing women to take hammers to scales to show that their weight isn’t as important as society has led them to believe. The university’s Student Health Center has also had students write their favorite thing about themselves on handheld mirrors. This way, students see their beauty when they look in the mirror, rather than all of their perceived flaws. I think, as a group, we could easily find other concrete actions to support this essential cause. There are so many ways to help people understand their true worth, and we need to get this message out among our campus.
Self image is so important to the psychological and social welfare of both women and men. People are more successful in relationships, academics, and work when they believe in themselves and are satisfied with who they are. This is why I think it’s so important for my group to support this cause on campus. We need to start a movement of people loving who they are so they can spread this love and positivity to others, even after they leave UD.