Notes from self

Notes from self

Notes from self

Evolution is a word that resonates very deeply with us. But what is evolution? Is it just a trendy word we want to imbibe in our conversations or a concept we really understand? The dilemma regarding this is what started my journey towards self-love.

As strange as it may sound,  the concept of beauty is defined by trends that change every decade and now, with the fast changing lifestyles, every few years. When  I say beauty, I am not talking about clothes or fashion but body type, face type, the colour of your skin, hair type and so on.

I grew up in the 90s, at a time when the concept of beauty was still a bit raw. A little fat on the body was not seen as blasphemy and frizzy hair, awkward fringes and big ear hoops
were considered trendy. In my mid-teens, I was often referred to as plump. However, that
did not bother me as I was still very young and unaffected by the  so-called  'influencers'.

In 2002, I entered the glamorous world of Bollywood and pop stardom  at the age of 19. I  had already shed a lot of weight by then but what hit me next changed my   life.
Influenced by the stars and yesteryear pop celebrities, I  had started dancing and working out to look my fit best. But the standards of beauty were changing. Skinny was in and raw was out. Hoardings showing people with light, flawless, poreless skin were filling up the Mumbai skies,
hair was getting straighter and tummies flatter than surfboards.

Much to my misfortune, my hair was curly, my tummy round, my face a bit acne stricken and my body voluptuous.

I was constantly picked at by my management for my body; it was the one place where I could never seem to win.

This phase of my life changed the way  I saw myself for years to come. From a popular  teenager who didn't have many issues with herself I became a person who would take a decade to fight these demons and come into her own.

There was a time when I actually believed that I could not be a very successful pop star because I did not have a flat tummy.

Today, many years later,  I am wiser and understand how we are all brainwashed every day on a sub-conscious level. Yes brainwashed! They say who ever controls the media controls the mind.

The golden question is - have you ever seen acne, pores, flab, aging skin, wrinkles or natural frizzy hair on any hoarding or advertisement, unless its a commercial for a product claiming to cure these 'issues'?  Have you seen healthy models displaying clothes on online shopping sites (despite the fact that most  Indians are size UK 12)? Have you seen gyms displaying posters of normally built people?

So are we doomed to live with this conditioning that we are not good enough? Or can we create a better environment for future generations by nurturing the thought that diversity is beauty. By driving the thought home that a colour can be a trend of the season but not a method for differentiating human beings. By being a little bit more compassionate towards themselves and others.

Most people I talk to measure their self worth and others by their outward appearances wherein my seven-year-old niece feels she is the best thing to have happened.

For the sake of those flawless seven-year-olds, can we love our imperfect selves?

Perfection is an illusion we chase when we were indeed born perfect.

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