What excites you? What fascinates you? What makes you lose track of time because you're so engaged? We all have unique interests and abilities and thus many gifts to give the world. Yet, we spend each day attending to whatever fire needs put out and whatever will lower our anxiety in the moment. While these things provide momentary relief, they don't connect us with our true selves. We succomb to the pressures of the world around us – whatever grabs our attention at the moment. I read recently that the average attention span in our current society is 9 seconds. Our brains are on overdrive. Messaging about what our body "should" look like and quick-fix ways to achieve this status are everywhere, constantly competing for your 9 seconds of attention.
When we spend all day long worrying about our appearance, it detracts from engaging in the world in a meaniningful way. On your deathbead will you be glad you spent your entire life in an endless pursuit of thinness, or would you rather reflect on the way you passionately made the world a better place?
You see, passion is extremely underrated. We have been trained by our society to conform – in our appearance, at work, with our friends. People with passion are seen as risk takers, and most of us would rather sit back and watch these people from afar. Taking such risks ourselves feels, well, too risky.
If you added up all the time you have spent thinking about your body, researching ways to make it more attractive, dieting, exercising, beating yourself up when you didn't lose weight – how much time would this be? More than you'd like to admit? That's ok. The dieting and beauty industry has spent a lot of money to make you do this. (And the more ineffective their products and methods, the more you'll keep buying the next best thing, right?)
Take a deep breath, forgive yourself, and consider what you're truly passionate about. Think how much more fulfilling life will be when you pursue your passions rather than an endless cycle of dieting. Sure, it might be scary, and you might stumble. The nature of passion is that it will pull you through these struggles. And the next time you find yourself sucked into our culture's attention-grabbing distractions, pause and refocus on what really matters, your passion.