When you consider that hustling to fit narrow, reductive, and arbitrary beauty standards is actually taking on the work of the oppressor, it becomes much easier to stand in your body with autonomy and power.
Choosing to look however YOU want to look is an act of rebellion against a system that has conditioned you to believe that you need to conform in order to obtain worthiness—a system that doesn’t exist to serve you but rather to profit from your pain. Choosing to feel joy, pleasure, and ease in a body that doesn’t fit the standard is, in a grand sense, the work of the activist.
In the same vein, criticizing other women’s bodies or how they live within them is also the work of the oppressor. It’s a form of internalized misogyny that results from generations of conditioning and indoctrination. We’re in this together and that means celebrating and collaborating with each other, rather than competing with and criticizing one another.
Therefore, if we seek to dismantle a system that marginalizes us, we must have the courage and self-awareness to identify how we’re complicit.
Are we working to treat our bodies according to our own desires and preferences? Do we allow other women that same space?
This is how we rebel.
This is how we stand powerfully in our skin—by being the boss of our own bodies, and encouraging every woman to experience that same autonomous ownership over hers.