The Health Perspective vs. What Media Portrays - Where are you?

fitness well-being May 17, 2018

In today’s society, we are bombarded with how we are “supposed” to look. We see media constantly telling us to lose weight. To look more toned. To look better. To look thinner. To look like your neighbor. Your mom. A movie star. You name it. We are constantly told we’re supposed to be an “ideal” shape instead of healthy.

This focus of how we look is threatening to take away some of the benefits we can feel from being healthy.

The purpose of being healthy is to help us be happier. It’s not to look a certain way.

How many of us are guilty of this? We drag ourselves to work out for a few days because someone we know has recently lost weight and we feel bad about ourselves. We suddenly deprive ourselves of all desserts and just want to eat salads.

After we don’t see results immediately we feel even worse and find it difficult to stick with our health goals. Additional harm lurks in what we eat when we focus on comparing ourselves and how we look to others or what the media tells us we should look like. We can start to eat too much food or deprive ourselves of eating which can lead to dangerous eating disorders. 

Overall, we’re not very happy when we are so concerned about how we look.

You know what would be better than focusing on how you look? Focusing on how you feel. Exercise, eating well, sleep, stress management, financial wellness — those things help us feel better.

We have more energy, more freedom, confidence and happiness because we can do more of the things we want to do. We are not limited from our health.

From time to time, I like to do a check-in with myself. I make sure I am not getting lost in how I look but am focusing on how I feel from my health habits.

People can look overweight and be in good health and people can also look very healthy and be unhealthy so it’s good to do a check on your health habits regardless of what you look like!


Honestly pause and consider the following questions in your own life:

Can I walk up a few flights of stairs without getting winded?

Can I go outside and play with children for 10 minutes without getting winded?

Can I play a short game of tag without feeling sick?

Do I meet the minimum cardio and strength recommendations to reduce my risk of chronic, preventable diseases?

Do I eat enough servings of fruit every day?

Do I eat enough servings of vegetables every day?

Do I feel more awake and alert when I exercise?

Do I respect myself enough to sleep 7-9 hours a night?

Do I think highly of myself?

Am I happy?

Do I use exercise and fitness to help me be happier?

Do I allow my workouts each day to give me confidence in the fact that I can do hard things?

Am I comparing yourself to other people? 

This is your invitation to contemplate where you are with your health & fitness! Consider your answers to the above questions. Are you happy with them? If you’re not, use these questions to help you identify in what areas you can improve your focus on being healthy.

As the media continues to try to persuade us what is the ideal, it’s critical to remember true health is about being healthy, it’s not about what you look like.

Do it because you love and respect yourself.

Remember, when you feel good, it’s easier to do good.

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