I personally have to go all the way back to my childhood to remember any moment in time when I can honestly say I experienced complete satisfaction – that moment when you finally get exactly whatever it is your heart desires. I guess it’s just one of those joys of being a child we’re never really aware of until we grow up, but this got me thinking about the world we live in, which appears to be a big world of unmet expectations. You turn on the television and while enjoying any show aimed at the female demographic, all one really gets is a message that we’re not good enough in some way or the other, and that trying to better ourselves is as easy as buying some or other beauty product, weight loss product, or just some or other clothing item.
Don’t get me wrong, I love shopping and I love dressing up and looking gorgeous, but I just wish we weren’t made to feel like we’re just not good enough the way we are. I get the sense that you can buy all the beauty products on sale, each and every last one of them, and yet somehow they’ll always be someone else trying to sell you something else, motivating your need to buy their product by either directly or indirectly telling you that you aren’t good enough the way you are.
It goes beyond TV though, with the internet in a sense amplifying this idea that there are more unmet expectations than there are those expectations which we can realistically meet. Look, a healthy body on the inside feels and looks good on the outside too, so I’m all for watching one’s weight and engaging in a healthy fitness and nutrition plan, but only as far as it’s for health reasons and not to fuel some vanity-driven offensive for profit-pushers to bump up their sales.
Weight seems to be one of those issues which the media just loves to play on, mostly through their promotion and somewhat of an elevation of a certain look, reinforced by a certain weight-range, heavy make-up that makes the wearer almost completely unrecognisable and even lifestyle choices. You see it quite clearly in an analysis of the UK’s most popular fitness questions as typed into Google’s search engine, that being the fact that we seem to have internalised these expectations the media has forced down our throats – expectations which in reality are out of our reach.
For as long as search terms such as HOW TO LOSE WEIGHT FAST will keep outnumbering more realistic searches like BEST EXERCISE TO LOSE WEIGHT, we’ll just keep perpetuating the cycle of unmet expectations. It would’ve been more encouraging for searches such as those looking for sports supplements to appear somewhere near the top of the most searched phrases in the UK as this would demonstrate a little bit more of a realistic approach to bettering our bodies through the likes of fitness, exercise and nutrition. This would’ve indicated that we have a better understanding of how leading an active lifestyle should be just that – a lifestyle, as opposed to chasing quick-fixes that prove time and again that they just don’t work.