The Definition Of Beautiful

Alix - L`Anse, Michigan
Entered on March 25, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
  • Listen to This I Believe on RadioPublic

  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

I believe that being beautiful doesn’t mean being tall, skinny or having pretty features, as our society today defines it, but rather being able to love yourself and be happy the way you are. Attitude is what really makes a person beautiful. The most attractive people I have ever met have been those people who do not care what others think because the only person’s opinion that matters is their own. Those are the people I look up to as role models and they define the word “beautiful” for me.

One person who made me realize that being beautiful doesn’t always mean being physically attractive is one of my closest friends. During middle school she developed an eating disorder even though I’ve never considered her to be overweight. But because of the standards that have been put on women, she felt that she needed to lose weight in order for others to find her attractive. She then started skipping a single meal every once in a while and eventually reached a point where she wouldn’t eat at all. After a while she started going to counseling and realized what she was doing to herself. She is now able to except herself the way she is and I’ve noticed she is a lot happier than before. My friend looked beyond what everyone else could see and forgot about what they thought; she became a truly beautiful person in my eyes.

When I hear her story now I start to think about how this affects my life every day. It is sometimes very difficult for me to go out into public without doing my make-up or making my hair look nice even though I believe that my personality is what really matters. This is because of the way that society teaches us to act like young women. For example, they show all these make-up commercials, weight loss supplements, and everything else that can change your physical looks. They give the impression that if you treat others without respect, as long as you look good while doing it, you’re a much more beautiful person than someone who isn’t physically attractive.

Eventually we need to start sending young girls the right message. We need to show them that no matter what you wear or what you look like, as long as you’re a good person on the inside, you will be beautiful. You do not need to change the way you look or pretend to be something you’re not, just be yourself. You’re beautiful just the way you are.