Sunday with Eden | Feb 01,2019
May 4 , 2019
By Tsion Fisseha ( Tsion Fisseha is a writer and head of foreign languages in the news department at a local TV station. She has been a part of a pan African poetry slam competition representing Ethiopia and is a member of a rock band entitled the Green Manalishi. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. )
I was in sixth grade when a skinny cousin of mine looked at me from head to toe and uttered words that would upset and affect me for a long time.
“You’re getting fatter by the day,” she said.
I hated the idea of eating food after that, and worse, looking at myself in the mirror. All I kept thinking about were my flabby arms and tummy. I wanted to be thin. Not fit, just thin.
People rarely shy away from speaking their minds in Ethiopia, however simple and insignificant the matter may be. It is a favourite pass time. And one of the most popular subjects is physical appearance.
If one is thin, then that person must be poor or stressed. Likewise, if one is fat, then that person is wealthy and pacified, at least that is the popular assumption. Or someone is chubby because that person is bad at taking care of their body. The list goes on. These thoughts are thoroughly communicated without the fear of causing anxiety and depression on the receiving end of a conversation.
Body image is a concept that has evolved throughout the ages. The concept refers to a person’s perception of their own body as compared to society’s predefined standards. It includes the memories, experiences, assumptions and comparisons of one’s own appearance.
This concept, as expected, varies from one society to another but is and has always been a significant idea that eluded and eludes our understandings. Body image could be of both positive and negative attitudes, both holding their own connotations. It does enormous damage to one’s psychology which leaves a huge imprint and takes quite a lot of years to get rid of.
Due to the predetermined standard that is set by society and exploited by the media, an obsession of altering one’s body sets in, which can be followed by eating disorders. This also leads both male and female individuals to have an assumption of others being more attractive than them and eventually developing low self-esteem.
Body image has slowly but surely become a relevant topic in Ethiopia. Having the desire to have an hour-glass figure or a muscular feature has become an obsession.
A compounding factor is social media, which has been found to be a significant catalyst in widespread body and weight dissatisfaction among girls and women, according to a study titled “’ Selfie’ Harm: Effects on Mood and Body Image in Young Women” by Jennifer S. Mills et al.
This is not to say that physical fitness is unimportant. It is something that we all should aspire to for the sake of living a longer life unencumbered by diseases. There is nothing wrong with starting a weight loss diet or hitting the gym.
The problem appears when all the equipment and remedies are used for the wrong reasons. Body image has more relevance in the thought process of a person than the actual body one carries. Much of our work should be focused on loving our image before attempting to change it.
“You are no less valuable at a size 16, than a size 4. You are no less valuable as a 32A than a 32C,” said Mary Lambert, an American singer and songwriter.
We should not allow external bodies to have an immense effect on the way we feel about our own. Only when we believe our worth can we truly achieve a positive body image. Physical health starts from how healthy our mind is - fixing the former without the latter is pointless.
PUBLISHED ON May 04,2019 [ VOL 20 , NO 992]
Sunday with Eden | Feb 01,2019
Life Matters | Feb 09,2019
Covid-19 | May 31,2020
Sunday with Eden | Jun 18,2022
Life Matters | Apr 02,2022
View From Arada | Jul 18,2021
Viewpoints | Aug 10,2019
Sunday with Eden | Jul 18,2021
View From Arada | Nov 23,2019
Photo Gallery | 54703 Views | May 06,2019
Fortune News | 47173 Views | Jul 18,2020
Photo Gallery | 46530 Views | Apr 26,2019
Fortune News | 46184 Views | Sep 01,2021
Commentaries | Aug 13,2022
Life Matters | Aug 13,2022
My Opinion | Aug 13,2022
Sunday with Eden | Aug 13,2022
Agenda | Aug 14,2022
Editorial | Aug 14,2022
July 2 , 2022 . By RUTH TAYE
On a rainy afternoon last week, a coffee processing facility in the capital's Akaki-Qality District was abuzz with activ...
November 27 , 2021
Against my will, I have witnessed the most terrible defeat of reason and the most sa...
November 13 , 2021
Plans and reality do not always gel. They rarely do in a fast-moving world. Every act...
October 16 , 2021 . By HAWI DADHI
Residing in a country with no capital market, an organised marketplace for trading se...
Leaders of the National Election Board are in a charm offensive mood, of a sort. Last week, they organised a rare tour for members of the me...
When the country’s most senior diplomats and envoys return back to their posts after two-week debriefings, they leave behind a point or tw...
August 14 , 2022
The call for lofty ideals such as national dialogue and consensus has been as old as...
August 6 , 2022
Few initiatives by the administration of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) have been pu...
July 30 , 2022
Ethiopia’s banking industry is not merely underdeveloped. It has historically regre...
July 23 , 2022
The flip side of a government spending plan is financing. Behind the campaign promise...
PM Abiy Ahmed (PhD) at a Gala Dinner Called for the Awarding of the Félix Houphouët-Boigny Peace Prize
May 6 , 2019
Having studied psychology, I am fascinated by how our thoughts shape our lives. I am also interested in mental health and try my best to cre...
August 14 , 2022 . By RAHEL BOGALE
Federal authorities approved submissions by the Addis Abeba University (AAU) administ...
August 13 , 2022 . By BERSABEH GEBRE
The federal government is imposing a new tax, hoping to generate an additional 22 bil...
August 15 , 2022
Agricultural authorities have backpedalled on a decision to raise the minimum price t...
August 13 , 2022 . By ELSHADAY HAGOS
Transport authorities have introduced unique license plates to vehicles owned by indi...
Or see contact page