The 2015 Super Bowl XLVI was viewed by 111.5 million people. If even half of those commercials were viewed by women, that means that [hopefully] at least 55 million women saw the "Like A Girl" commercial by Always. It nearly made me cry! Even Brix thought it was a powerful commercial! If you missed it, though, it went something like this: They asked women and men in their early twenties and adolescent boys what it looks like to "run like a girl", to "fight like a girl", and to "throw like a girl". All of them had similar responses -- sissy throws, flailing arms, and legs kicking every which way. Then, they asked adolescent girls the same questions. Not only were all of their actions strong, one of the girls even said, "to run hard".
It's baffling to see how society changes our opinion of women as we grow up!
Dove had a similar approach to the issue last year of asking women in their 40s-50s to describe themselves to an artist. Then someone they had just met described them to the same artist. At the end of the commercial the women got to see the sketch of how they see themselves vs. how someone else sees their physical appearance.
More times than not, I've found myself victim to myself. My hair. My smile. My thighs. My strength. My speed. My intelligence. I can tell you a lot of it was who I was friends with in school. I had one friend in particular that to this day, I don't know why I was friends with her. We played softball together. She was my "best friend" since the 2nd grade. She'd always say, "You run like a girl. You throw like a girl. You have chubby cheeks. Look at your fivehead." And while we haven't even spoken in a couple years, it's hard to look in the mirror everyday and not catch a glimpse of all of those things--the physical things that don't even matter. Not really.
Now I've entered this crazy limbo of post-college adult life, and I'm battling this dynamic of having it all right -- right now! I have purely confident days where I say, "I ran 9 miles and I can have this giant cinnamon roll and I still look great!" Then I have other days where my run sucked, my hair won't curl right, I'm late, I spill coffee in my lap, I come home to a giant pile of laundry and my day just sucks. At the end, when I'm ready for it to consume me I just have to stop and say: Not now. It doesn't matter. And start fresh the next day!
So I challenge you to empower not only the young women in your life, but also the young men. To teach them that your mind is more powerful than your looks. Your health is more powerful than your looks. And your heart towards others makes the most lasting impression of all.