By: Lorene Belotti, Guest Blogger
We’re young, connected, and targeted every day by thousands of messages in the media telling us how we should look like, think, behave, and live. Of course, the more we’re similar to the most bankable movie-star of the moment, the best we are considered. Welcome to the 2.0 generation era.
All day long, on the Internet, on social media, and on TV, we’re told about celebrities’ success stories. Most of the time, we buy the same old fairy tales that magazines are selling us about well-known figures. If you’re like me, you skeptically stare at the eye-catching phrase, often a quote: “I don’t gain weight, I have a high metabolism” (when, in contrast, you gain 4 lbs. by only watching an ice-cream) or “I’m so happy with my life now, everything is perfect” (while you’re so exhausted that your whole world seems to fall apart. Even your cat seems to be against you!) or “I have a wonderful bikini body and outstanding abs, nevertheless I only work out ten minutes a day, two times a week” (whereas you go to the gym and run and swim every week for one hour without seeing any result!) Come on guys! They are lying (or at least, embellishing the truth A LOT!).
I’ve always been careful to keep perspective about fame. Of course, I admire some people but I’m far from being a groupie. I couldn’t worship someone. I also know pretty well not to take all the media’s information as Biblical truths. Despite of all this, I caught myself several times comparing myself to “perfect,” famous idols after reading women’s magazines or seeing “perfect” pictures on the web.
The worst part of this glorification of stars in the media is that we feel bad after seeing those pics of celebrities’ “perfect life” proudly posted on Twitter or Instagram or relayed everywhere in the press. We immediately compare ourselves to them and we conclude we’ll never be as talented, beautiful, charismatic, and loved as them. Clearly, we feel like losers.
Why do we inflict this on ourselves? Why do we compare our life and personality to people we don’t even know and for whom image is handled with marketers, publicists, make-up artists and Photoshop editors? Why do we keep pretending this is reality, holding to an ideal that doesn’t exist and worse, an ideal we’ll never reach?
I did some digging on this subject and found several rational explanations.
In a society ruled by recognition, where we have to present ourselves to be respected, being famous is considered the Holy Grail. It means we’re above the others, we’re “untouchable,” and we fit an image of “perfection” required by the media industry and by extension, by the whole world.
If you get to become one of the illustrious people, you’ll be put on a pedestal and considered a special human being. Above all, you’ll be immensely LOVED, ADMIRED, and HEARD no matter what. People dream of celebrity because they imagine they won’t be shut away in their lives anymore, as if glory would free them of their daily routine, responsibilities and bad moments. Fame is an “artificial Eden” where people just NEED TO BE, whereas we, anonymous lambda people, have to fight every day to prove our worth in every field. Fame is seen as a “perfect” place where we can be who we are.
Sorry to disappoint you girls but this is a fantasy. Nevertheless, I promise this is no big deal because you, beautiful ladies, you are all worthy of love, respect and kindness even if you’re not a celebrity. You may not be idolized like your favorite actor or actress, people might not yell at you, screaming your name, along your way but you know it doesn’t count. You must understand that truth and authenticity are way more valuable and fulfilling. Be confident, your voice matters! Your opinion is as precious as the other ones. You have your place in this world, just like everyone else, nothing more, and nothing less. Be your own star, be THAT GIRL.
Celebrity culture rules, but it doesn't have to rule you. Don't believe the hype; perfection is where you find it.
- Try a celeb culture detox for one week: swap out Hollywood gossip sites with news, videos, or fun sites that are less celebrity focused and bypass the magazines. What do you notice? Does this change your views of celebrity culture?
Lorene is a French observer and learner of life. She’s been working as a salesperson and a marketing assistant for four years to learn the ropes of the business world. She used to be a sports journalist while doing her Master’s degree and she loves writing and telling stories about great people too much not to go back to her first love soon. She lives in the French Alps, and loves to try to solve the world’s problems while having a great meal with her loved ones. She is passionate about foreign languages, self-development books, American TV shows, and people. Oh, and she’s a total nerd of Academic studies (when she’ll win the lottery, she’ll go to Harvard).
Image via engage-sbs.com