Sunday, March 21, 2010

standing for what i believe.


well, i really can't get this off my mind. lately i've been thinking a lot about image. i think it started in february when grant and i were spending a lot of time in airports. naturally, i would head to the magazine/book store and check out what looked interesting. i remember waiting in the fort lauderdale airport to head back from the cruise. we spent like 12 hours there. ya. it was a really long day. grant had lost his phone on some caribbean island and so our only form of communication, if we separated, was to use our walkie talkies. i left to go get us some food and while waiting for it to cook (chili's to go, chips and salsa + their yummy cheese dip), i headed over to check out some magazines. i counted over 15 magazines. that had at least something on the cover that went something like this "how to get a celebrity body" "3 minute abs" "2010 bikini body countdown" "lose weight without even dieting!" "a sexier body in just 30 minutes a day" "how to get a sexier body". i mean i really could go on and on. that isn't even the half of it. i immediately paged grant, "hey babe, can i tell you how GAY the country we live in is??", he laughed and said "of course", i then proceeded to read every cover i saw that had any featuring article relating to how to lose weight quick or how we can be sexier (because obviously those are hands down, the most important things we need to achieve in this life). i think everyone was wondering what i was doing but i definitely didn't care. my desire to make a point completely overrode any embarrassment i had. i mean it infuriates me. and then it was just last week, i was taking a small break at work in the back. i was finally able to pull out my instyle for the month and feed my brain. because fashion is the career i chose, my passion and hobby. anyone who reads magazines knows that the first 20 pages are just advertisements for designers. as i was flipping through, page after page with the usual.. michael kors, then guess, calvin klein, gucci... etc. I COULD NOT BELIEVE MY OWN EYES!!! every single spread was absolutely disgusting and offensive. the calvin klein ones were definitely making me the most upset, with eva mendez laying on the ground while a man's hands looked as if they are about to pull up her mini skirt. i mean it looks as if he is practically going to rape her. yes that sounds a little dramatic but that is really what it looks like. i sat there thinking about the kinds of messages the image was projecting and i wanted to cry. i'm so sick of the media for this reason. not just because of the obvious facts:

it crushes the value of women and completely demoralizes us and even encourages men to love us for only that reason. but the reason why it makes me so upset is that WOMEN ARE SO NOT AWARE OF HOW LOOKING AT PICTURES LIKE THESE AFFECTS THEIR SELF ESTEEM TO THE VERY CORE. i have seen in my own life, friends who are immediately depressed after watching or reading something ("why don't i look like this? why can't my legs look like that")(i mean who doesn't do that? especially when we see fake images like this). i guess the point i want to make is that very rarely do you just happen to be in a bad mood. thoughts create moods. THOUGHTS CREATE MOODS. thoughts create moods! now to expound on this a little more let me just give you a math equation. i have learned over the years that....

equation-
pms + brittany marie barnes = no self esteem.

hypothesis-
surround myself with positive things when my spirits are low.

experiment-
on our way to haiti, i had pms. i went to the magazine store. looked at marie claire, instyle, lucky, shape, vogue, blah blah blah. noticed my thoughts and predicted future mood. grabbed real simple instead.

results-
i finished the magazine with a kiss on grant's cheek. i felt inspired to budget my money, try some new chicken recipes, cherish my relationship with grant (loved the fabulous article, "secrets of staying happily married"), try yoga this month and organize my crafts and tools. moral of the story? stop reading things that you know will make you feel sad afterwards.

i was talking to a dear friend of mine and i was explaining to her that i feel self conscious about how passionate i am about this stuff. i expressed to her that sometimes i feel that i am from a different generation, nobody my age seems to get as upset as me about this stuff (okay, there are a few). she said to me that she thinks it should be something that i am proud of. it is something that makes up who i am. it warmed my heart to hear that and i think writing this post is another step in accepting it about myself. i love that i have very intimate feelings about a woman's worth. i chose to be a wardrobe stylist not because i am just oh my gosh like so obsessed with like juicy couture but because i believe that every woman is beautiful and i want to help women and show them that. we are worth so much. and to end my testimony, i read the following on this blog yesterday and couldn't stop thinking about it. it really gave me chills. and since i do believe in giving credit where it is due, let it be known that i copied this straight form her blog.

for you women, here is something to ponder:

if i were satan and wanted to destroy a society, i think i would stage a full-blown blitz on women. i would keep them so distraught and distracted that they would never find the calming strength and serenity for which their [gender] has always been known. 

satan has effectively done that, catching us in the crunch of trying to be superhuman instead of striving to reach our unique, God-given potential within such diversity. He tauntingly teases us that if we don't have it all- fame, fortune, families, and fun, and have it all the time- we have been short-changed and are second-class citizens in the race of life. as [women] we are struggling, our families struggling, and our society is struggling. drugs, teenage pregnancies, divorce, family violence and suicide are some of the ever-increasing side effects of our collective life in the express lane.

too many of us are struggling and suffering, too many are running faster than they have strength, expecting too much of themselves.

and my favorite line--

... we must have the courage to be imperfect while striving for perfection.

read more here.

39 sweet thoughts:

Michelle and Landon said...

Britt- I love that you posted this, I wish we all could remember this more! I have never had a perfect model body, and because of that in the eyes in many people I am fat! Thats not the case! Im beautiful, I am smart, have a great job, I love to run and swim and compete in triathlons and I love my size 10 jeans! I should not feel ashamed about that! WE all need to embrace our imperfections and find out amazing potential!

Ash said...

Thank you so much for posting this! The world as we know it is so harsh when it comes to body image. I was reminded of this when I watched the red carpet fashion thing on E! with a bunch of "celebrities" including Joan Rivers. I didn't catch the actual red carpet so I wanted to see all of the beautiful gowns that were being worn.

I ended up having to turn the channel because of how hideous Joan's remarks were about some of the actresses. She stated that Gabourney Sidibe (The actress in Precious) could have been used as the blue screen for the filming of avatar. She also said that Kate Winslet (who is one of my faves!) was a heavy person. She's a freaking size 6 for crying out loud! When did a size 6 figure become heavy?!?!

It's truly sickening that society, that WE, have let this happen. That this way of thinking is normal and accepted.

I have ALWAYS struggled with feeling less than average looking my whole life. I know that I shouldn't think that way, because it's not true, but I do. I know what helps me a lot is reciting a positive mantra. It seems silly but it really helps. It's kind of like a protective barrier between myself and the outside world. It says:

"I am beautiful. I am a good person with a good heart. My family loves me. My friends love me. And Jesus loves me."

It's simple but it works wonders.

sorry this was so long.

Ash

Kera said...

thank you for this post. i'm sick of feeling fat. i'm strong and healthy and my husband thinks i'm sexy. i need to stop looking at those magazines too. you're the best.

Kyle and Nicky said...

Thank you so much for your post! Growing up in a family of 3 girls and a tiny mom, I've always struggled with body image. It still plagues me today! Everybody needs to read this and remember that we are all beautiful! Thanks again!

lyndsey and joey said...

You don't know me but I come across your blog sometimes. THANK YOU so much for this post. I feel the exact same way when I have pms, I get kinda crazy and I always take it out on my sweet husband who has never done anything but love and adore every part of me. And it is always something about my self esteem or that I am not good enough, pretty enough, skinny enough, why would he want me, blah, blah, blah... And it is always something negative that sets it off. I didn't realize that though. Now I know. I'm glad I am not the only one who feels this way. Anyway, thank you, thank you.

Niki {A*Lovely*Lifestyle} said...

i love this post. very thought provoking. it hits down deep. i love that you are passionate about these things. i think you were blessed with such beauty and poise because Heavenly Father knew you would use it to it's full, positive potential throughout your fashion related career. you draw people in and inspire them to not only be beautiful but to want to be beautiful for the right reasons. your love of a woman's worth is obvious. i can say all of this because this is how you make me feel...and i only know you through blogging...i can't imagine how inspiring you would be if i knew you in person. you are so darling and so sweet and i love reading your blog. thank you for the reminder.

ChloƩ said...

wow britt... i don't even know what to say..this post was so beautifully written. i seriously felt like you put into words exactly how i feel about the media and magazines and all of this stuff that we find our selves addicted to and competing with, and just can't seem to pull away from.. i love that you picked up a different magazine and felt totally different afterwards.. you are my hero..seriously! i love that you did that and i want to be that strong!

you are amazing britt. i know i've told you before but you never stop amazing me! you are such a beautiful person, deep down to your very core and i love that about you!

i also had sooo much fun with you guys this weekend, and i totally felt like it was not enough time at all! i kept wanting to hang out!! we must never go that long again... you guys are awesome and i love you!! i am so happy we are friends. i can't even explain to you how much i value our friendship!

Michael & Mindy said...

Britt I love this. I love that you are so passionate about this topic. You have posted about this before, and I always love reading it.I am so with you! It is SO hard to look at the media and not compare yourself. But then I see stuff like Heidi Montag on the front of People and look at the before and after pictures and think she was so much cuter before, and then I realize that we're totally fine the way we're born, ya know? Why go through 2303 surgeries in one day to change how you look? It's like that quote I have from Sister Hinckley on my blog..."Develp the maturity to stop trying to prove something. Learn to be content with what you are." I love Sister Hinckley and I put in on my sidebar so I read it every day and remember that I'm okay being me. PS, one of these days I'm going to hire you to be my fashion consultant and give me some fashion help. I am in desperate need. And there I go...not being content. But that's different I think. I just need a change, ya know?

Anyway. I love that you are passionate about this and I think it's awesome that you are vocal about it!

Cute pic of you by the way.

Michael & Mindy said...

PS, I'm wanting to buy a flower from you. I know they have a more technical name, but I can't think of it! Anyway. I absolutely love them and want one (or some). Is it easiest to buy them on Etsy or what?

kaysi fox said...

wow, you made me cry!! this is so SOOOo true and i can feel my heart start beating faster just thinking about all of the CRAP out there! it makes me so sick, i feel like i can't watch tv anymore because i am constantly changing the channel because something terrible comes on! ughhh, i could just scream about the body image problems that the media is making us have! it is SO not fair! geezzz, i just love reading your blog! your write everything so perfect! it is exactly how i feel but just cannot convey! love that article! :)

ps. it makes me feel just a tad better that you feel the same as me because you are SOOOOO gorgeous and i would never think that you had issues with it too! you are amazing girl!!!

Shane and Chelsea Elton said...

I loved how you expressed what so many of us women feel everyday. I struggle with my body image all the time--I know it drives my husband absolutely bananas! I love how you basically said we should really be conscious about the entertainment we choose to view because there have been so many times when I've felt so down about myself after reading a certain magazine or watching a certain popular show. Thank you for being so passionate and sharing these thoughts, it has helped me to feel impowered and more aware. You're awesome!

the hopkins said...

Brittany Marie Jones Barnes :) (funny I just wanted to tell you that when you wrote "Brittany Maire Barnes" I said Jones in my head before I even read Barnes cause that's how I've always heard it when you use your middle name)

ANYWAY...
I completley agree with EVERY SINGLE word you wrote. And I have sooooo many thoughts going through my head right now. YOU KNOW I am on the exact same page as you with this subject and so passionate about it as well. And there are so many times I have been in a situation that deals with something along these lines and I've asked myself "am I being to extreme or opinionated about this..?" And I always decide NO! I am not!! Anytime someone brings up something along this topic and I'm with Preston he always makes comments like "Uh oh, you better not say that or you're going to get her all fired up" haha, he'd be saying that right now too.

I just hate how the world is getting worse and worse with this. Although I have never been one to buy or really read magazines, I do see the covers in every grocery store and see this kind of material from commericials, movies, internet.... it's everywhere!!! It disguists me as well. And it makes me furious that there are women who would allow themselves to be viewed that way. (This is why I can't handle Vegas... you already know how I feel about this) I hate that there are so many men in the world that are becoming comfortable with seeing things like this. Because it is so WRONG.

I just agree with everything. And agree you have to be so careful with what you choose to expose yourself too. I love that you weren't embarrassed to read everything to Grant, hahaha, totally something I would do :) And I love that you were using walkie talkies. I'm glad you are standing up for what you believe Britt and that you are sharing it with others!

I'm sure you figured that you would get a super lengthy comment from me about this, but believe me I could go on for a lot longer.. but I'll stop for now.

P.S. I think its been waaaaay longer than 24 hours since my last text ;) But I don't even remember what we were texting about now.
love you!!!!!!

Heather said...

I am a total stranger, but I read your blog every now and then and can I just say THANK YOU?!

You seriously hit a home run on this! I LOVE every word you wrote! We are so desensitized to it and I for one have always felt like maybe I was being a little too passionate about things like this but I'm SO glad you are making a stand. What a great example, thanks for giving me the resolve to continue to take my stance and defend it. We can't just give up!!

tiffany said...

i loved this. i don't really think about it too often, but it definitely doesn't make me feel good.
i really need to pick up real simple when i'm in that mood too. thank you so much for this post

xo tiffany

Meg said...

Britt- God put you on this earth for a reason and for that I am grateful.

Romney Family said...

Thanks for sharing that with all of us. I have to say that I in the past have been one of those girls that felt horrible about myself because I was never a size two. I always enjoyed life but always had that nagging feeling of I am too fat. I was always athletic and played basketball and did track but still felt that way until I met Brandon. He has helped me build my self image more than anybody because he truely loves me for who I am inside not what is on the outside. I know that it doesn't matter if we are a size 2 or 10 or 14 as long as we know who we are and why we are here and try to be healthy. So thanks for those great thoughts!!!

David and Shalynna said...

Perfect, Britt! Your words were just perfect. I agree with everything you said. This is one of those posts that every girl needs to read.

I really love that you have such a strong conviction to let women know their true worth. I'm so thankful that our faith has allowed us to see our divine potential.

So, I don't really buy magazines because I'm too cheap. I love to read them and anytime David's family visits they usually leave theirs for me. But, the times when I start to feel down on myself or my looks or my body is when I read blogs. I have told you before, but sometimes blogs are not good for my self esteem! Most the time I feel that I have zero talents. Other times I feel down because I read/look at blogs with girls who have the cutest clothing, houses with gorgeous decor, perfect swimsuit bodies, and descriptions of non crying babies. I then realize that I end up in a bad mood, but it's just because I'm jealous. It's terrible. I start thinking that their blogs are dumb because all they do is brag, but what's wrong with bragging? I do it all the time on my blog, don't I? Girls are entitled to blog about things they are proud of like their talents, cute clothes, perfectly decorated houses, non crying babies, etc., because it's their blog and they can blog about whatever they want. I'm the one with the problem because I let myself get jealous. So, in so many ways I'm a hypocrite. I posted Oliver's blessing outfit because I was proud of myself for sewing it, but if someone else had done that I probably would have been jealous, mad, etc.

Anyway, thanks for writing this!

beckie. said...

applause applause applause! you're gorgeous!

Rochelle said...

I frequent your blog from Shawnes's and I love what you write and I am so glad you wrote this...it might be that I am pregnant with hormones or that I am ever increasing in size...but this was something I needed to hear. I fall prey to the magazines and the wishing I looked like that so many times - and it's nice to be reminded that's not what God intended us to feel - thanks!

Anna said...

i love when you post things like this. it's so empowering as a woman and reminds me that i'm not the only one disgusted with the media and struggling to love myself for how i am because of it's negative influence. i think i'll be coming back and rereading this post several times. :)

grant + brittany said...

Brittany,

This is Alix... for some reason when you logged in at work it won't let me log out... so... (yes I am at work haha)
I just wanted to thank you for posting about this. I am completely and 100% in agreeance with you. Even recently with that photoshoot, I feel all those emotions that you feel when looking at those magazines. I am totally affected by them and try not to even look at them as I pass by realizing it will just hurt my soul.
I think as women we are constantly comparing EVERYTHING. Our boyfriends/husbands, our clothes, makeup, hair, cars, purses, shoes, houses, vacations... etc. I mean the list is endless. There is really enough jealousy in this world. How awful is it to be jealous of complete strangers? I totally struggle with this and when I don't meet my own standards, I get down on myself. I think it's really about being happy with who you are and what you've got. There is a reason for the way God made you, and for the things God gave you. I am trying to remind myself that so I don't get all crabby, moody and unhappy about my life. Ah... this is such a good post! You are seriously awesome.

Much love,
Alix

Britt- said...

Hi you don't know me but thats ok. I'm a friend of Chloe's so your not creeped out either ha! I don't comment much on others blogs but I thought you should know that your post touched me. You have this talent of writing from your heart. I feel so moved when I read your posts, its absolutely amazing to me. So good job and keep writing!

emily+brett said...

you are in inspiration! seeing someone's heart in something is just that, inspiration. after reading this i feel peace and comfort knowing that i am a unique women. diversity is what makes the world turn. our day is bombarded by evil and satan seeking to destroy the sweet innocence of womanhood. thank you for sharing your passion because i'm sure you will find that you are NOT alone in your thoughts.

on a lighter note, it was fun seeing you yesterday. you always look amazing. don't know how you do it but i love your fresh style.

Carolyne said...

I loved reading this post. It is for that reason that I stick to cooking and home magazines. They truly are so much more inspiring/wholesome reads. Instead of tearing myself down with completely self-centered woes, those magazines inspire me to create loveliness around me and the people that mean the most to me. Really, they inspire me to not focus on myself and to create beauty here on earth.

I absolutely love this:
"THOUGHTS CREATE MOODS." So true. I think that is why we are counseled to watch our thoughts, because much of the time, they control our actions. I'm so glad I found your blog!

Brianna and Byron Putnam said...

I'm finally going to comment... I found your blog a bit ago through mindy's. I started reading when you went to haiti and you were so inspiring! I even called my husband that day and said, "let's drop everything and go to haiti." that, sadly, did not happen. I love this post though. As most people have already said, I agree. But it's still hard not to get caught up I guess. Anyway, thanks for your post and I'm going to be checking out your flowers when they come to AF and Orem :)

{megs in wonderland} said...

im new around here, but from what i am reading, i think i love you! you are such an amazing person brittany! i want to be your friend. you are one cool chick. keep standing up for women, we need more girls like YOU!
xoxo
megs

abby said...

i didn't read all that comments but i'm obsessed with that sister hinckley quote from mindy.

i think everything you said is absolutely true. but i also agree with shalynna- magazines aren't my problem. blogs are. with celebrities and models i can feel detached and not compare myself because they are in a whole different world and a lot of it is so fake. and they spend sooooooo much time trying to look that way. but with blogs i get down because the writers are my peers and they're often stay-at-home moms too and i think, "how the heck are they so talented/beautiful/smart???" etc, etc, etc. "if they are, why am i not?" full disclosure: shalynna, your blessing outfit totally made me feel that way. and brittany, you have a cute little body and i remember seeing your vacation pictures and wishing i had your body. so there ya go. but really we all just need to work on our minds and remind ourselves it's not a competition. and the bottom line is that you are my friends and i'm happy for your successes! a success for you doesn't mean a loss for me. that is something i need to always remind myself. and also that sister hinckley quote. seriously, amazing.

Ash and Matt said...

Brittany-I randomly found your blog a couple weeks ago and love it! Thanks for writing about this. I think so many women--including myself--struggle with comparing ourselves to others and especially what we see in the media... even though we know better.

Have you seen this clip by Dove? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYhCn0jf46U) I think it gets the message across really well, as far as comparing ourselves to magazines goes. I think the article from Sister Holland covers the other end of it really well. We are worth so much more than we give ourselves credit for.

lehi + sasha said...

that denim is soooo cute. too bad i'm too old to wear it! ha.

and my honest opinion?

if anyone else were to wear it... yes, it might look cheap. BUT you make everything look fabulous and expensive looking. so NOT TO WORRY miss paranoia! :)

Jaeme + Randy said...

Thank you for posting this! I completely agree with you, it is sad how many messages we get as women that we are not good enough and that we need to "fix" this or that. I can totally feel a difference in my self esteem when I read magazines like that (even though I do like them...). I feel so bad when I see young women come to the ER because they are having depression problems, anxiety problems, etc. I feel so bad about how they see themselves and I always want to help them and tell them how beautiful they really are! More people need to speak up like you did, good job :)

trudy...{and jamo} said...

amen.
i am so glad you posted this.
you are such a beautiful example-inside & out. i love you.
p.s. the conference talk was really good!

angela hardison said...

so glad i saw this. i can't even begin to explain how much i relate... i can hardly watch tv without getting upset/ feeling bad about my body.

i've always loved holland's conference talk to/about women. thanks for your beautiful thoughts.

here's to having more courage to be imperfect!

Sophia said...

thank you for writing this. i have a special place in my heart for you and the thoughtful workings of your mind.
xoxo
soph

my name is lauren. said...

this is so beautiful brittany.

thank you for sharing this. it really is difficult being a woman and being constantly bombarded with unrealistic "ideals" of what we should look like, how we should act, and what we should achieve.

one of my goals (it's ongoing of course) is to get to the point where i truly love my body and appreciate it for all the things it can do. i'm so not there. even when i was 20 lbs. lighter i still thought i was fat. it's really sad that this is what our culture has put on us....and it's definitely not something that anyone but women can understand.

anyway, thanks for your perspective.

whimsy said...

this is amazing. as are you. and i love that we have pretty much the same name
brittany barney
brittany barnes.

you are seriously really inspirational!
and absolutely gorgeous.
and i really needed this.
loves to you!
britt

Bridget said...

this is such a lovely post.

JoMama said...

WOW! I thought I was the only one who felt so passionately about this. I feel like I have just read what I have been thinking and feeling about the image of women and how what I see on/in magazines affects me, my mood, and everyone who sees those images too. I get knots in my stomach when I see "family" movies and women magazines that are full of innuendos or inappropriate images. I bought a style magazine a couple months ago and was sickened by the advertisements.

I have noticed how it really affects my mood, like you. I just end up wasting so much time feeling sick about it...

This is the first time I have visited your blog and I clicked on the link to your 2-yr anniversary video...I wanted to comment about how you are always dressed so cute and MODEST!! Thanks!

JoMama said...

P.S. I hope you don't mind I put your post on my blog...if you would like to view my blog email me at josweetiepie@hotmail.com

Emily said...

Amazing!

I randomly fell upon your blog via pinterest and then clicked on this post through linkedwithin and it was great to read. I feel the same way!

Cheers :)

♡ Emily from http://bestofthislife.blogspot.com/