Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Who Are We Really Trying to Impress?

I don’t think I’m generalizing when I say that everyone wants to look good. But at the end of the day, who are you really trying to impress?

Is it some boy in school? If he’s worth the effort, he will love you no matter what your dress size is. A guy who won’t notice you until you lose weight is someone who puts way too much emphasis on physical appearance, and not enough on the things that matter. I know this sounds so cliché, but it’s really true. Guys who value girls based solely on their bodies aren’t the guys you want to be involved with. Someone who wants you to change any part of yourself, including your weight, isn’t appreciating you for what you are. There’s no reason to try to impress some dude who doesn’t know you exist. If he’s the guy you really want, he’ll have noticed you already.

Are you trying to impress your sister? As an only child, I can’t understand sibling dynamics from personal experience. However, I’ve lived in this world long enough to know that some sisters are constantly in competition with each other, especially when they’re closer in age. I really don’t think this rivalry is worth it, either. Of all the people you want to impress, your siblings should be the last on the list. They’ve seen you toddle around in diapers. You don’t need to prove anything to them.

Or is it your friends? If you feel the need to impress your friends, then it might be time to reevaluate why you’re friends with them. A true friend will love you no matter how you look. She won’t go out of her way to hurt your feelings. Of course, everyone has bad days and says things they don’t mean, but if you have a friend who constantly rags on you because of your appearance, chances are she’s not someone you want to hang out with.

I only keep in touch with two friends from middle school, one of whom is female. When I think back on it, she’s also the only friend I had at the time who never made any obnoxious comments about my appearance.

Why should you work so hard to impress others and constantly hold yourself to somebody else’s standard? The key is to worry less about how others perceive you. I don’t know if it’s possible to ever be completely indifferent to what people think about you, but we should always try.

My former school guidance counselor once said that she was talking to an older friend. The woman said to her, “When I was twenty, all I cared about was what people thought about me. When I was forty, I didn’t care what people thought about me. When I was sixty, I realized that people didn’t really think about me all that much.”

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