Psychical Beauty: The New Scale of Self Esteem? | Teen Ink

Psychical Beauty: The New Scale of Self Esteem?

June 6, 2021
By Reagan0703 SILVER, Bakersfield, California
Reagan0703 SILVER, Bakersfield, California
7 articles 0 photos 1 comment

I’ve always been bothered by the fact that some people feel lesser than other people by the mere concept of physical beauty. I, myself, have felt less than others because I’m not as pretty or as good looking. But in the dictionary (Merriam Webster Dictionary to be exact) the definition of beauty is defined as: “the quality or aggregate of qualities in a person or thing that gives pleasure to the senses or pleasurably exalts the mind or spirit.” In other words it is saying that beauty is the qualities in something that gives others happiness or joy. The very definition of beauty itself says that it’s the qualities IN a person or thing. So when did we decide that beauty was the qualities of a person, in other words the physical characteristics, and not the qualities they hold? 

I can’t help but wonder how that then leads to a scale for self esteem. We began measuring ourselves on how beautiful we were or how good we looked. Whereas qualities such as being kind, patient, caring, and so much more faded into the background. It wasn’t as though we completely got rid of those qualities, it's just that they didn’t seem as important or as meaningful compared to being pretty or looking “good enough.” It was as though helping each other wasn’t the main thing on our minds, rather we were too busy staring at the mirror depicting everything we found wrong with ourselves. 

With each minute that passed we managed to find another thing wrong with ourselves, another thing we wanted to change, another reason to convince ourselves that we aren’t the physical depiction of beauty that society has told us we should be. But in truth the definition of beauty is the qualities one has within themselves. It could be your kindness and ability to care for another, or your hard work and devotion, or your patience and resilience or perhaps it’s something else entirely. You shouldn’t feel as though your beauty is measured on how good you look or how pretty you are but rather on your unique qualities. The very qualities that give life to those around you, that bring others joy, that makes others smile brighter or laugh a little louder. It’s important to recognize that beauty within is the beauty you should be prioritizing because in truth beauty is the qualities you already have and the future qualities you can develop. 

That is why the scale of self esteem should be more directed towards the person you are inside, not the person that is just seen. The person that is just seen can’t even begin to go in depth to the person you truly are and the personality you have. Society has made it so that people are to fit their definition of beauty, a twisted definition that demoralizes the very beauty that everyone carries. But it is through searching for our uplifting qualities that we’re able to find our beauty and that process in itself is beautiful. 

The author's comments:

I mainly wrote this piece to address how a lot of self-esteem issues have been related to looks rather than qualities that one has. I want to be able to change other's views of the definition of beauty so we can search for internal beauty in one another and not just in the physical characteristics one has. 

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