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A Woman's Road To True Beauty
We live in a world where society dictates the norm. In today's society, beauty becomes so stringent that many women develop distorted views of body images and become frustrated at not being able to obtain the "ideal figure." Some women are so dissatisfied with their body size that they are driven to become thin and maintain that thinness, sometimes to the detriment of their health. Some women diet in order to increase their self-confidence, make a partner happy or to fit into the perceived model look hype that is so often seen on television. In some respect dieting trends reflect the cultural norms that say that women who eat less are considered to be more feminine and more beautiful. Women spend thousands on surgery to change their features or gain the nose, eyes, and mouth of their favorite celebrity.
Society's belief on what a female should look like play a significant role on how we as women view ourselves. During the teen years, women deal with two responsibilities: intimacy and identity. How they handle this period in life will have a major impact on their self-esteem, mind, body and spirit. Let us not forget that beauty is not physical appearance but, self-esteem, and humility. It is not what you see outside, but what you discover within, such as a kind heart that counts.
As women we need to be empowered with skills, knowledge, and confidence so we can challenge the entrenched structures that tend to hamper us. We should become aware and responsive to our potential and seek to continuously create and be positive role models to others. In short, we should learn to speak with strength, authority and knowledge and not place our self-esteem in the hands of others who would make money on our insecurities
Ms. Lewis is President and CEO of The Deline Institute for Professional Development, a training organization that provides workshops and seminars geared toward professional businesswomen. Ms. Lewis is a native of New Orleans, Louisiana. She is an Adjunct Professor at National-Louis University, where she teaches Human Resource Management. Ms. Lewis has conducted training for the Federal government on Diversity, as well as EEO regulations and guidelines. Ms. Lewis is a certified trainer with the Professional Women Network, specializing in the area of Diversity with an emphasis in Women's Issues. Ms. Lewis is a member of the Professional Woman Network and Professional Woman Speakers Bureau; the National Association of Female Executives; The African American Federal Executive Association and Federally Employed Women. Ms. Lewis' knowledge of business and professionalism is supported by 21 years of work experience in the military and 18 years of continuous work experience as a civilian with the Federal government. (Email email@example.com)
Illustration by Kevin Van Aelst for The Chronicle Review - Chronicle of Higher Education (subscription)
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