HUNGER FOR CHANGE

February 14, 2014

Annabelle Pendlebury

WHAT’S ON THE OUTSIDE SURMOUNTS WHAT COUNTS

You’ve all heard the cliché: “It’s what’s on the inside of a person that counts.” Yet somehow, in our world of supposed modernity, this message is getting shoved to the dusty back corner of our brains (kind of near where you stored your mother’s warning to “clean your room, or else”). It seems it is becoming less relevant in our image-obsessed society than ever before.

Suddenly, it’s what’s on the outside that counts. Pressure for young women to look like human Barbie dolls is a way of life for us today.  Interestingly, it’s not just us plain ol’ regular folks who feel the pressure of this sad reality either – celebrities such as Portia Degeneres have admitted to having eating disorders at one stage in their lives. Celebrity or not, dreaming of being stick thin shouldn’t have to be a reality for women or girls – yet for many of us, it is.

As a result, it’s so much harder to find a girl who aspires to be the smartest, the kindest or even the healthiest in her class – instead, it seems like looks win out. Meanwhile, the guys have to worry about their body, too. They’re not allowed to be fat any more than girls are, but they can’t be skinny either – ew!

Imagine if we could convert all that energy spent dreaming about having the ideal body shape (which would be a lot of energy all put together, cause let’s face it, every one of us has spent time doing so at one stage or another) into other, perhaps more productive outlets. Pretty sure we’d have flying cars by now.  Yet for guys and girls, there is only one type of physique that is acceptable and if we don’t meet expectations, we become worthless in the eyes of society. It’s a mentality that makes everybody feel bad about themselves at some point, so why is this our reality?

Perhaps the answer lies somewhere behind the scenes of movies or between the pages of our favourite magazines.

We look at the cover of a magazine and the first thing we notice is how the subject looks. We can’t help it because, as much as nobody wants to admit it, the eye makes an assessment of someone before we get to know them.

How refreshing would it be to see magazine covers showcasing something different such as, say, the bravest, smartest or funniest girl in the world at the moment, instead of the “sexiest” every time?

The star of the (brilliant) second Hunger Games movie and my newest girl crush, Jennifer Lawrence, is that kind of refreshing. She’s the world’s latest “It” girl because she’s hilariously “normal” and makes no effort whatsoever to hide who she is. Even better, Lawrence is vocal about the importance of things other than appearance. Combine that with her kick-ass attitude and you have the awesomeness of J-Law in a nutshell.

So, although it’s human nature to meet people with our eyes, I recommend you take a minute to Google J-Law and meet her with your ears and listen to what she has to say (plus, I promise, it will have you cracking up in no time).

Here’s Lawrence, for example, on skipping meals: “There’s that Kate Moss quote that’s like, ‘Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels’. I can name a lot of things that taste better than skinny feels. Potatoes, bread …”

See why I love her?

I say we bring that corny little cliché back into style and, instead of worrying about how we can best mimic her weight-loss regime, aspire to be as gorgeous as Jennifer Lawrence clearly is on the inside.

– Annabelle Pendlebury

 

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