Wine Hourglass is a two part series, which aims to depict how we use body types to determine first impressions.
The truth is I did not look at a wine glass filled with wine and thought something controversial might come out of this. That came later. I only aimed to capture my moment of drinkable bliss. It never struck me that I not only captured more than just a half-full wine glass but I also locked in on a trait of our human nature – judgemental.
Only the two extremes became part of the story, with everything in the middle such as fit, athletic, normal, flabby, slim, etc. falling under the radar as lets face it, the chances of these body types drawing our attention are quite low – we might not even notice them as they walk past. So why then do we point out the ones on these two ends of the scale with such condescendence?
Do not misunderstand me, I do not mean that singling out these bodies with admiration and appreciation is something to be ashamed of; it is when we disparagingly lace our thoughts out loud that begs the questions – Why do we do it?
I’ll give you some examples.
“She is so skinny, she probably doesn’t eat.”
“Look at all her flabs showing, I don’t understand how she dares to wear that tight clothing. Doesn’t she have any self-awareness?”
“He is so overweight, he needs to go on a diet. He must be very unhealthy, look at him!”
“He’s got very skinny legs for a guy. They’re so stick-like. I could not see myself with someone like that.”
We also have the unspoken – How many of us have treated someone more civilly, nicer in fact, because of how they look and how many of us have avoided someone completely? How many of us could not look at another in the eye because of the judgemental thoughts running through our own heads while we are in their presence?
Did we ever pause to think – perhaps they noticed? We are a complex species after all. The unspoken quite often is a deadlier weapon than the spoken.
Part #1; The Skinny
Part #2; The Curvy
Now that the above controversy is out of the way, I want you to look very closely at yourself. While it is almost impossible to like everything about ourselves, as we are our most critical judges – and we have to be fair, there will be no room for improvement if you favour everything; but have you learnt to accept yourself?
I’ll give some examples.
You are aware that you are not as tall in height as your peers or family members however you have acknowledged this and while it may have taken you a long time to come to terms with this, you are now surprisingly okay with this.
You have not been eating well and you noticed that your body looks unhealthy however you are quite aware that this is because of certain reasons such as a stressful period and you promise yourself to relax and go a little easy on yourself. You acknowledge that you will have to change certain habits and traits. (It then begs a question of will you be willing to – but I will leave this for another day.)
You may wonder if the aim of my blurb was on how we judge others based on how they look, then why am I now turning the focal point back on you?
So I ask:
“Why is it that we feel the need to judge others based on how their body looks? Does it make us forget our own insecurities especially when it is so easy to lock in on someone else?”
What if instead of judging, we merely state our observations? For example “She is so skinny” or “He’s got very skinny legs”.
What if we told ourselves:
“I am not tall, but I am okay with that.”
“I am not happy with being overweight but I know exactly what I can do to be healthier.”
I believe that when we are comfortable with who we are and how we look, we will stop searching for venues to distract us from our own dissatisfaction, and this includes our harsh judgement of others.
Some of you may be thinking I could be promoting extreme acts such as anorexia or bulimia with my last quote; I can only assure you I only wish to promote self-awareness, acceptance and love of oneself. I wish to promote a society where we no longer feel ashamed of our body shapes. I want a day when you are no longer blind to your own beauty. Then perhaps another day, you can look at others in the eyes with the same kind of acceptance you have given yourself.