Tuesday, February 18, 2014

On Thinspiration

Hey ladies! So I, like a bazillion other people, set my New Year's Resolution to (oh-so-very-cliche') get healthier. I don't have a ton of weight to lose, but I wanted to shed a few that had been inching up. So, with the help of some online friends, I joined the A Little Too Fluffy challenge and did end up losing 6 pounds. I still want to learn better habits for my health and well-being, so I've picked up the Daniel Plan. I'm mostly loving it, actually. It is really based on whole health, spiritually and physically, and is something that I can really hang with for the long haul. There are certainly days that I don't feel like exercising or sticking to my meal plan, and that brings me to a topic that's been sort of heavy on my mind. The Thinspiration Board.

Do you know what these are? Thin + Inspiration, get it? Sort of like a board on Pinterest where you might go to be motivated to lose weight or reshape your butt cheeks. This is the sort of motivation you can find on a Thinspiration board.

They are usually pictures of super thin, model types. Sometimes they have sayings like this. Sometimes it's motivational, sometimes it's a little disturbing. The thing that I've noticed on all of them is that the bodies portrayed are not typical. Not really something you'd see at the pool or the beach or the store. Hyper-sexy pictures of hardly dressed women who are likely very young and very dedicated to their bodies. I'm not really going to knock on the pictures or the girls in them as they are made in God's image too. I actually just want to look at our response.

When we have these boards, there's a strong tinge of shaming in them. Like you need to keep these images of these perfect bodies in front of you, lest you forget why you need to stay on your diet. Like this Brazilian supermodel needs to remind you that you don't look like her... and that you should. That you should try harder. Keep going.

I'm not saying that motivation is bad at all. We do need reminders when we're working toward any goal, certainly. And visual people sometimes need visual reminders. I totally get that. But still there is something that hurts my heart to see the comparison of nearly unattainable bodies (certainly extremely uncommon bodies) to our women. I have seen mothers of 4 with thinspiration boards. I have seen 13 year old girls with them. Beautiful girls that I know. I have seen holy, Christian women with images like these on their Thinspiration boards. I'm not going to post anything racier than this here, but you know if you have them.

You guys, can we just be honest here? This is not motivation. This is self abuse. Your butt is just not going to look like that, ok. Not likely anyway. We are more than this, anyway, y'all. Our bodies are temples, so yes, we owe them some respect and care, but that's not what Thinspiration is, is it? It's more like hating yourself into becoming something skinnier, something sexier. And has anything good come of it? If this picture of a Victoria's secret model all oiled up makes you want to put down that cookie and do a squat... you ok with that? Cause that doesn't really seem healthy and whole and like a daughter of the light to me. Maybe it's just me, but it seems that there's something dark going on here and I smell a rat. I just wanted to mention it as spring (and summer) are headed our way and it's that time where people start getting crazy about bathing suits and such. Just remember who you are. I like visual reminders too. This is the stuff that makes me keep going when I'm at a crossroads. I'm a typography girl, myself.

So, sorry to pick on any of you that have these boards. They make me sad all over, but I'm really just worried about you. I don't want you to feel less than. I don't want you to compare yourself to something so impossible it's probably photoshopped. And I don't want you to make changes to yourself based on a feeling of inadequacy and shame. I really really really want you to make changes (if you need to) based on good stewardship of your body and health. Don't hate yourself thin. You're too good for that, you know?

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