You’re Hotter Than You Think
Especially if you fall into one of the following categories, according to Psychology Today:
You compare yourself to models
Fashion magazines are all about unachievable ideals (and pushing products to “help” you meet them). Those who buy these glossies have worse body images than those who don’t.
But as UC-Davis psychology professor, Richard Robins, points out:
When women evaluate their physical attractiveness, they compare themselves with an idealized standard of beauty, such as a fashion model. In contrast, when both men and women evaluate their intelligence, they do not compare themselves to Einstein, but rather to a more mundane standard.
Women with better body image don’t feel inferior to a starved and airbrushed standard.
You must be perfect all the time
Along these lines, some feel they must be perfect all the time. These folks are intensely concerned with how they appear to others. As Carlin Flora, over at Psychology Today put it,
We all know someone like this—a friend who never runs out of the house to grab coffee without fixing herself up first.
While most people find these women very attractive, they don’t think they are. Their point of comparison is the very best-looking people. And their inability to live up to perfection brings them down.
Your parents praised your looks
Interestingly, kids who are praised only for their looks can become very self-critical, feeling attractive only if they meet very high standards of beauty. If they aren’t Angelina Jolie, they’re “ugly.”
Your parents put you down
If your parents said you were ugly, that can be difficult to overcome. Exhibit A is Michael Jackson who spent years going to plastic surgeons as a result of his father pointing out his supposed flaws. Fortunately, this is not common.
It doesn’t mean we’re ugly. It means we have poor parents.
You think everyone’s judging your flaws
Some people think their flaws are always in the spotlight.
Psychologists, Ann Demarais and Valerie White had a client who thought everyone was focused on his crooked teeth. They helped him see that other people were actually more worried about their own supposed faults than his, and suggested he try smiling broadly when he met new people.
He took their advice and was surprised that no one drew back in horror. In fact, they were actually friendly! It was very freeing.
You got chuckles and stares as a kid
Some kids get teased for being too tall, too short, too heavy, for having too big a nose… And the childhood label can last a lifetime.
When they grow up, others may see the same feature as making them interesting and giving them character.
I don’t know if Jennifer Grey, of Dirty Dancing fame, experienced anything like this, but many feel that when she “fixed” her nose she became more conventionally beautiful, but lost some spark, some allure.
Women are especially concerned with looks because their social status so often hangs on their appearance. And we seem to think there’s one universal standard. Yet beauty varies by culture and from person to person. Some prefer taller, others shorter, some thinner some thicker, some smaller, others larger…
And we tend to be our own harshest critics.
If you are especially body-focused, or if you are uncomfortable in public due to worries about your looks, you are surely hotter than you think.
This is a rerun. I’m on vacation.