Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Understanding Beauty



Beauty is a phenomenal concept which is as old as mankind. Yet, it is a concept which is very misunderstood. Different individuals listen to such diverse views of what beauty entails that quite a number end up confused, frustrated and frankly give up. If someone were to walk right up to you and asked you to define beauty; what would you say? Would you start describing a cover model you saw in one of the popular magazines, or colors of the rainbow? Or would you consider a soft melodious piece of music or even a romantic verse from a lover? All these can be defined within the concept of beauty but one thing that is clear, there is no definite definition of beauty. Beauty is something abstract and intangible. It is something about something. This something about something will vary from individual to individual. A popular definition of beauty is that it is a characteristic about something that gives a feeling of pleasure and satisfaction. Therefore for beauty to be perceived, it must stimulate the senses to evoke a feeling of joy, pleasure and satisfaction. From this definition, the judge of what's beautiful is the person who receives or fails to receive the pleasure.

How is this sensuous beauty applicable among human beings? What makes one be considered beautiful and attractive? Is a person considered beautiful necessarily attractive? These are complex questions which do not have a direct answer. The way the societies we live in view beauty is influenced by many factors. First of all there are cultural factors. In the past, each culture had distinct criteria upon which they based beauty. There are those cultures that considered plump women to be beautiful. Therefore fattening of maidens before marriage was a common practice. Others considered small feet to be beautiful. These have however changed a lot in modern times. With the advancement of technology and human interaction, the differences in cultural preferences have been minimized and we now almost have a standard way of viewing beauty. This is greatly influenced by the parameters set by top fashion houses. The images they project to the public, form the dress, walking style and physique have increasingly become the trend that the reminder of the World is expected to follow. But is what we see on the Catwalk the true representation of beauty? Thankfully, no. Human beauty is so rich in variety that we can have no set parameters within which to define it. One cannot authoritatively say small is beautiful, blonde is beautiful, slim is beautiful, green eyes are beautiful etc. and condemn other characteristics. There is no standard of beauty and each individual is beautiful in her own way. There may only be prejudices as a result of the society around the individual. It for this reason you would find a man married to a blonde having an affair with a brunette, or a lady of oriental or African descent. They are simply beautiful and the man cannot resist!

So, if we are all beautiful, what then is the big deal? Is there any reason to bother or care about how we look? Yes there is! You must certainly take the keenest interest in how you look. We live in a complex and highly socialized world. The image of beauty has become highly commercialized. Non conformity is risking rejection. Studies have shown that what is considered beautiful has a halo effect. A beautiful and attractive person will receive more attention, score higher marks in class, get more assistance, get a better job, be paid more and be trusted more. Coincidentally, people who are considered beautiful are better adjusted, confident and appear more intelligent. Therefore beauty plays a key role in our lives in how we relate with others and in how we choose our mates. It is therefore a responsible thing for us to ensure that we are beautiful. How do we do this? Since we have established that beauty is about evoking feelings of pleasure and satisfaction in other people, we must therefore aim at ensuring that people are pleased with what they see when they look at us. We all have strengths and weaknesses. We must strive to strengthen our strengths and mask our weaknesses. The aim is not to be the most beautiful person around. That is futile in that there is no such most beautiful person. The aim is to ensure we are presentable and acceptable in the society we live in. This will enhance our self confidence and of course our health. In Beauty and Health for Happiness, we will discuss tips on how to enhance our beauty and health. But first we must observe the following fundamental beauty tips.

o Accept yourself the way you are and know that you are beautiful in your own unique way. This is the first step in enhancing your beauty and health, making it shine to all around you.

o Develop healthy habits. Beauty and health are inseparable. Among the many characteristics contributing to overall beauty is health and youthfulness. You must have a healthy body, healthy skin, eyes, good breath, and healthy teeth etc. It is therefore imperative that you have a well balanced diet, exercise regularly and consult your doctor whenever necessary.

o Identify suitable products that you can use to strengthen your strengths and mask your weaknesses. These include moisturizers, creams, perfumes and hair products etc.

o Make a plan and start simply.

Beauty is a concept that plays a major role in lives and affects how we socialize and compete within the society we live in. There is no correct version of beauty and all of us are beautiful in our own way. Our perceptions of beauty are influenced by the society we live in and the modern commercialization of beauty. You however need not follow what you see in commercials. You can instead make a point of improving how you present yourself to others, and in the process, enhance your beauty and health.


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