Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the prettiest of them all?

Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the prettiest of them all?

You remember anything from this line? Anything crossed your mind; it is something that we must have heard when we all were kids. This is a very famous line from the famous story of Snow White where the queen used to say this line to her magic mirror. The lines were “Mirror mirror on the wall who is the fairest of them all?” The mirror always responded that it was the queen but when one day when she asked the mirror the same question, the mirror showed that it was Snow White, who was the fairest of them all. It raged the queen and all the hatred and jealously was seeded in her for Snow White. We must have seen Snow White or heard about the story when we were kids; do we remember the learning that we gained from it or the message that queen spread? Most probably we don’t remember it and even if we do then we can think of it again and evaluate that thought. It was clearly evident that the queen was in awe of her beauty and considered herself to be on top when came about that. Less did she know that comparing herself with others and trying to be the number one and that probably fetched her nothing but negativity and an irrational thought process. It was all about the way one looks and a particular standard that we all set for ourselves when it comes to perceiving us. In a way it was also about accepting the fact that there can be others who can be better than us.  Let us think and ask questions like what beauty is? Who decides that I am beautiful or not? Why certain standard are made for it? Who made these standards? How these standards are leading us to contribute in making us perceive ourselves in a faulty manner? Why do we look for validation for our beauty? Why there is a need for a second person to tell us that we are beautiful? Lastly and the most important one that, why do we compare ourselves with others? These answers could have various answers and the can be objective as well as subjective, but the key aspects should be rationality.

We see so many people around us; let it be actors, our daily acquaintances or people who are just there. We talk, judge and evaluate other people on the basis of how they look. We do that. We might deny but if we think, it is something that we might have done it some point in our lives. Is beauty really what we see and understand it as? Is it the appearance of an individual? Or is it the characteristics or qualities that a person has? A type of processing and thinking makes us alter the subjectivity as there are more ways available to distort it, rather than to correct it. Beauty has been an abstract concept with having a vast array of meanings. What beauty means for someone might totally differ from what it is for you. It could be a task to come to an understanding that is accepted universally. 

From very beginning we engage in learning and discovering new things and the impressions that we make about those things is how we see those things in our life. Beauty has been a concept of question because the standards that have been set are damaging on so many grounds and people have been bullied, harassed, rejected, or has faced something that has impacted them psychologically. Beauty is associated with looking a particular way, it is about have a particular type of body and also it is about being fair skinned. There has been a constant procedure of establishing these endorsements regarding acceptance and people tend to fall for such unrealistic realities. It can be saddening to see kids calling someone as pretty or ugly and that could be a starting point for something that can seriously affect the other individual or the person himself or herself. Another thing which is important here to understand is the desire for being perfect and accepted. Each one of has a different way of processing and perceiving things, with that the existing models help us shape the bits about a concept or the experience. It can be formed on the basis of comparisons that there are certain statements and you think that you have to have minimum to fit in that criteria. It cannot always be possible for everyone to have what the standards are asking for because most of the time they are too demanding and unrealistic. There are certain things and standards that have been existing from so long and along the way people have tend to accepted those aspects and at the same time, it is not easy to change the entire though process of people. It has been rooted in our collective unconscious. We have been involved in a misunderstood procedure of evaluating ourselves and deciding if we are beautiful or not. We look at other people and without even thinking, we start comparing and feeling bad about it and eventually about ourselves. This gives the insecurities to seep in. We start feeling insecure about the way we look and we start looking for ways to get evaluated in a way that we want. It feels important, the validation acts as a coping mechanism or a coping strategy to deal with the insecurities. More than that, it can start taking a toll on our mental health and we might end up distorting our identity just because we thought that we do not or are not able to match those standards. When we feel like that and when we begin to get caught in this cycle, we should ask these or think about these questions that why do I have to look like a certain way, a way that is the most conventional way of looking beautiful. What type of happiness would it get me? And most importantly, how far I will be going to get the acceptance or validation? We often miss to think about the fact that while we are engaging in such behaviours might lead us in gaining experiences that can disturb us or lead to other psychological disturbances.

It is an essential step in understanding oneself from their own eyes and not fall for what the people say and tell. We should be the one to validate ourselves and think about us as the most beautiful human and to keep this fact intact. It is important to understand that beauty is an idea, it will keep on changing; what is beautiful now might not be tomorrow. As an individual we have been overcoming hurdles and gaining experiences and knowledge and that what is the most beautiful thing. Looking in a certain way, having a certain skin colour, or having a shape can be the standard. Beauty can be a feeling. Accepting yourself just the way you are is beautiful, standing up after falling in life is what makes you beautiful. Believing in yourself is beautiful, having the courage to embrace your imperfections and scars is what makes you beautiful. Perfection is something that we should not always look for. Rather, accepting ourself and loving ourself is important. When you will start loving yourself, that is, what will bring the change. It is going to take a lot of time to twist and bend the standards of beauty that have been existing for years and years and we cannot even expect them to change overnight. We all are unique individuals. There can be few similarities but that uniqueness is pure and evokes a soothing sense. Start looking at the good that you have in you and stop comparing yourself with others. According to this world where there will be a hierarchy in everything, and there will always going to someone who is going to the most beautiful individual according to them. We should know that even if that person is on the top still that person is not you. Also start to accept the fact that this is a competitive world and someone will always be ahead of you, having a positive thought about it and not deriving insecurities or a sense of competition could really make a difference. Learn to embrace yourself and love yourself. All you need is you. You are enough. Next time when you look into the mirror just smile and tell yourself that you are beautiful and no matter what others say to discourage you it will not matter and this thought in itself beautiful.

About the Author

fariyal asad
Student.

Hi! I am a graduate psychology student. I've completed my graduation from Ambedkar University Delhi. I am a psychology en

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