Health Magazine

If You Don’t Have Anything Nice to Say…

By Healthhungry @Healthhungry

Remember hearing this in your youth; “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all…”  Have you ever joked that you’d never speak if you followed this rule?

How many times have you sat around and talked trash about the the way other people look?  I am in no way exempt from this one… I grew up regularly hearing, and eventually saying things like… Did you see what she was wearing?  How could she possibly think that looks good?  I can’t believe she is dating HIM!  Look how skinny she is! 

I have also been very guilty of the old comparison game that sounds a little something like… Wow, at least I’m not THAT big.  Clearly, that beautiful thin woman can’t relate to me, I bet she has never had issues like mine.  Whew – she’s the same size as me, I’m okay here.  I may be fatter than her, but at least I get to eat!

Our society has a number of TV programs that are based on changing how people look, and shows that are all about discussing others’ appearance.  Oscars anyone?  How many of you (be honest) sit around with your besties and dissect every detail of celebrities’ outfits, bodies, hair… right along side Ms. Joan Rivers and her entourage of “fashion experts”?  Why do we think it’s entertaining when others are judged for these things?  It’s like junior-high for adults!

If You Don’t Have Anything Nice to Say…

Put yourself in their shoes, how would you feel being picked apart for your appearance?  In fact, if you are like most women and gay men I know -  you have experienced that very regularly.  How did it feel?  Why do you do that to others?  What are you getting from it?  Does it really make you feel better to talk about people in that way?  If there always people “beneath” you – then there will always be people above you too.  You cannot actively judge others without placing yourself in the seat of the judged.

All of this judgment generally comes from one place: you are not happy with yourself.  Often times the hurtful words you have for others are kind in comparison to the words you have for yourself.  You deserve better.  You are better.  You can do better.  Make a commitment right this very second to stop the criticisms out loud.  It’s fine if you notice things, just stop saying anything about anyone’s appearance in any way.  No more verbally drawing attention to anyone else’s age, weight, clothes, height, make-up, hair or lack of, etc. etc.  Try it for one week.

My boyfriend and I made the commitment yesterday – I of course think he has the issue much more than I do.  15 minutes after making the pact, I almost text-ed him about how a well-known newscaster appeared to me – and then I caught myself.  Nope, not going to comment on anyone’s appearance out loud.  This week give yourself permission to notice it, and notice your urge or perhaps your knee-jerk reaction to say something – then don’t.  Just don’t.

If You Don’t Have Anything Nice to Say…

If we don’t want to be judged for how we look, then shouldn’t we start practicing that ourselves?  Look around, and see the beauty in others – look for the beauty in everyone, and soon you will see it more clearly in yourself.


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