Focus on Function

Our current society is plagued by the ideal of beauty as it relates to form. A woman is beautiful if her hair looks a certain way, if her midsection is flat, if her butt is shapely yet firm, if her thighs are thin, and the list goes on and on. But how do any of those ideas define the function of the human body?

When I think of my body, the first thing that comes to mind is how it looks especially my belly, things like my belly can be flatter and what not. What is the function of my belly though, it’s the cavity that contains most of my soft organs and protects them from the outside world. There are a ton of other functions but I won’t belabor the point. I wonder if the form thing is predominantly a woman thing, today I asked my husband to tell me the first thing he thinks when he considers his body and he took a minute before he told me that he uses it as a tool to experience the world, you could tell that wasn’t a question he was used to answering. I wish I had the same attitude.

I have bought into the idea that there is an ideal body, and this definition of an ideal body has absolutely nothing to do with how my body functions. Yes there is the whole heart disease, stroke and diabetes part, that cannot be discounted for its a serious issue, but are six pack abs necessary to reduce the risk for those ailments? I don’t think so.

One of the perks of having free will is the ability to choose what we believe in, what we decide will permeate our consciousness on a daily basis. With that said I think it’s time that we focused on loving our bodies because they help us move through the world without pain. Instead of focusing on the wrinkles on your skin, be thankful that it is an efficient barrier to harmful substances in our environment; Instead of focusing on the size of our things, why not the strength of our thighs and their ability to help us move around the world; instead of the shape of our hips, why not marvel at the fact that a new life can possible come through there some day. I can keep going about how to appreciate our bodies more for what they can do, but not what they look like, but I hope you get where I’m going with this.

Intuitively we all know that change can only occur in a nurturing and accepting environment, so even if you want to change what you have, first accept it. Accept your body as it is to day and nurture it to do what it was meant to do, feed it so that it can work for you, move it so that your vital organs are healthy, and maybe just maybe, a day will come when we all can look at ourselves and see the marvel of creation that we all are as we currently are, instead of the body improvement project that the media would like us to see. I think that’s called taking back our power, and it’s about time we did that.

Have a wonderful day.

You can find me on, follow me at, or on twitter at thematandi. You can also find a different version of this article on my website ( called Function Over Form.


I’m doing an all call for inspirational quotes, videos, short blogs, and articles that relate to improving self-esteem, and developing a positive body image and sense of self. We’re calling it Self-Concept Thursdays! Send your submissions to [email protected] using Self-Esteem as the subject line.

***In the meantime, leave your Positive Affirmations below!