Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Goddess Within

It is the weekend here and I have lots to do (marking) and lots I'd like to do (footy, sleeping). I'm sure your weekend looks something like that too, perhaps without the marking.

This week I listened to this incredible talk by Naomi Wolf - you know the one - she wrote The Beauty Myth in 1991. I've never read it, but I think I should. Half a dozen times at the start of her talk I almost turned off because I didn't fully agree with her but then, wham! She hit me with her conclusion, which she'd be building all along. It is that if women spend their time thinking about their bodies, their appearance and measuring their desirability against other women they are not using their beautiful, smart and incredibly creative brains to think, solve, create and believe. That the enslavement of our brains to this 'beauty myth' means we are not free and that we cannot become all we could be. Breaking away from this, she argues, is freedom; is happiness.

A big call, yes. I have to admit to spending stupid amounts of time in my day thinking (obsessing) about these things and I think many women do this too. Since I listened to Wolf I've tried consciously to stop those thoughts in their tracks, which has been an interesting exercise. It is about being mindful - using mindfulness to alter habits. Something I've been working on for a while now, but not in this area.

Anyway, well worth a listen if you have some time.

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