“I’m not interested in accepting my flaws. I want to analyze why I was made to believe I had flaws in the first place.”
I read this several weeks ago and wrote it down. I am not sure who to give credit to for saying this (please enlighten me and I can update this post). It resonated so much.
As a therapist who works with body image and trauma, I hear about so-called flaws regularly. Body image work is hard work for many of us. We are socially conditioned to work toward an ideal body and appearance…and it usually goes back to someone making money. There is always a product to buy to change the so-called flaws. It angers me to think that I am being manipulated to believe something, so that I can then be exploited! The brainwashing has taken place. It is rampant.
Once we have been socially constructed to see flaws in ourselves, then we often start the process internally. For many reasons, we start to feed these messages internally based on our fears and hurts that really have NOTHING to do with our bodies.
One that comes up often in my office is fear of rejection in relationships.
Who’s going to want me if _______________?
And that blank can be filled with any number of things. Here are a few: I’m fat, my hair is red, I have a big nose, I’m this short, I’m too skinny, I’m flat chested, I’m m ugly, my ears stick out, I fart too much, I have all this baggage, …. You get the idea. The list can go on and on…and can usually even if it is something we can change, that’s not enough…...
And it bleeds beyond romantic relationships. Who’s going to be my friend if ______________? Who’s going to hire me if ______________?
I think we need to change the question around. Who wouldn’t want to be with you? Who wouldn’t want to be your friend? Who wouldn’t hire you? And honestly, maybe someone wouldn’t for the exact reason you fear. But honestly, we don’t need those jackwagons in our lives. There are others who can come into your world and recognize that you are FREAKING AWESOME!
Maybe it is a huge leap to jump from seeing yourself as flawed to seeing yourself as freaking awesome. But I do think it goes back to why do I believe I am flawed in the first place? The answer is usually one of two things (or both)—
somebody is trying to make money
my brain is trying to protect me from being hurt.
The antidote to the money issues is anger. Get angry at the system that is place to subtly (and sometimes not so subtly) convince us we are flawed.
The antidote to our brains protecting us is courage to embrace our vulnerability. This can be overwhelming. Small intentional steps will get us there.