We live in a world that is very exterior-focused. By that, I’m referring to how socially constructed standards of appearances have pushed themselves so strongly into our consciousnesses that how we look and act has become integral components of how we live our daily lives.
To be frank, I find this social pressure to be rather sad.
Think about it. When we first meet someone, what are some of the first things we notice? Looks, clothing, mannerisms … the list of exterior presentation goes on. And, because of the ways in which we interact with new people we come across, I firmly believe that in that context of first impressions, so many of us attempt to convey something we’re not, obscuring a true perception of what makes us unique in the process.
I would argue that considering the contemporary state of society and the world in general, it’s never been more important to be ourselves. As cliche and philanthropic that may sound, I believe it to be true for a variety of reasons.
We live in a world that is driven by internet technology and social media. With that comes the ability to project ourselves however we so desire, resulting in conflicting interpretations of ourselves and others over time. Why are so many of us fixated on giving off an impression that fails to ring true with who we really are? Likely because we’ve been influenced to do so by growing up with technological mediums that encourage us to emphasize our appearances as opposed to who or what we define ourselves as.
With a world so strongly focused on looks and materialism, it’s never been more important to stay true to who we believe ourselves to be. There’s only one of us in this world, so why are we trying so hard to be like others?