Can we PLEASE practice Ahimsa with ourselves just as we would with others?

by Amy Renee
Can we PLEASE practice Ahimsa with ourselves just as we would with others?

I like to read when I do cardio. I think that having my body moving at the same time as I read enables me to focus more clearly. I know, it sounds counterintuitive. But it works for me. And I really enjoy it. 

I usually like to read books, but for some reason I got a Women’s Health magazine in the mail and decided to bring that along with the latest L.A. Yoga with me to the gym for cardio yesterday. I read a few pages of L.A. Yoga and, although it was enjoyable, for some reason I felt drawn to open the other magazine. I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s because it had been so long since I’ve flipped through a fashiony-fitness type of magazine and was looking for something different? I don’t know.

Everything was normal enough. Decent articles – as to be expected in a main stream “health” magazine. But…then I turned the page to read this, ”

Huh? I mean, what the Hell???!!!

Seriously, are you kidding me? Is this really what the future looks like? Our society is already uber obsessed with counting calories, fat grams and carbohydrates and or sugar grams and finding the best new way to shed fat, whether it be actual exercise or the latest God awful invasive plastic surgery trend. People wear those ridiculously uncomfortable (and potentially dangerous) corsets in hopes of a smaller waistline. We add extensions to our hair, our eyelashes, pump fillers into our faces, spend billions of dollars every year on magical face creams…why are we so obsessed with looking a certain way?

As I continued on with the article I was happy to discover the author DID in fact include the negative affects this type of technology can have to one’s self-esteem and confidence levels. But why is it available at all? I mean, it IS a free country I guess. Of course I don’t think we should regulate what people can and cannot have in their homes to assess their aging (can’t believe I just typed that – ha ha), but it just pains me that we encourage such obsessive and unhealthy behaviors and that companies such as the maker of this mirror are gaining from others’ insecurities. It’s just sad.

Although it is true that the technology of this mirror can supposedly help you identify whether or not the products you use on your face is helping, but can’t we tell if they are already? I know when a product doesn’t work well and I definitely can tell when one does. I don’t need a mirror to tell me that I look 5% older today compared to last week – that my skin is less firm, I have more brown spots and my fine lines are more pronounced.

I have an idea. How about we eat a healthy diet full of phytonutrients and antioxidants and absent of things we don’t need like saturated animal fats, exercise our minds and bodies daily with things like walking, hiking, running and yoga, and practice positive self-talk and gratitude. If I want my mirror to talk to me I want it to say things like, “you’re strong,” “you are capable,” “you have a good heart,” and “you’ve got this.” How about we just take a [non-permanent] marker and write some positive messages like this on our bathroom mirrors?

I’m not saying we don’t have to put our favorite pthalate, paraben and gluten-free creams on to help moisturize our precious skin – of course I will always do my best to reverse the aging process, but I’m just so sick of our society making us feel guilty for getting older. Why is it bad to be over 30?

Let’s enjoy getting older. Let’s do it with pride and grace. I want to enjoy every year just as much as the year before. And being nice to myself plays a major role in that. I hope it is for you too.


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