In her song “Flaws and All,” Beyonce sings about the beauty of being accepted for your imperfections by the one you love. But far too often, acceptance and beauty standards are subscribed to how others view us and not how we view ourselves.
As cliche as it may sound, true beauty is found from within. No matter how beautiful people may think someone is, if they don’t see it for themselves it holds no true value. Just look at the many celebrities who’ve turned to cosmetic surgery to achieve some self-imagined level of beauty, though the public believed they were just as beautiful before going under the knife.
When you stare yourself in the mirror and love what you see looking back, you not only free yourself of the pressures to be something you’re not but also caring about how others perceive you.
Sadly, most people don’t live by the code of loving themselves flaws and all. While they may proclaim to be confident and happy with who they are and what they look like, many are actually self-shaming themselves behind closed doors, nitpicking any and every imperfection they can possibly find. Truthfully, perception is reality and if you reject the perceptions that only slim, light with straight hair is what beauty looks like, you can redefine what is real beauty in your life. But it’s easier said than done.
Getting to that place of unconditional love for oneself is a journey that requires unrelenting effort and patience. It won’t happen overnight. But if you start with affirmations of self-love, and begin to name something beautiful about yourself every single day, slowly but surely you will find yourself beginning to love the skin you’re in.
Expanding what you believe to be beautiful will help you dispel the skewed and narrow standards society force-feeds us, and begin to accept others, and more importantly yourself, for the universal beauty that lives from within.