Not Here by Coincidence

Hey dear readers and friends! 

Firstly, a big warm welcome and it’s so nice having you over!

No, I don’t think any one of us is here by coincidence – perhaps we’ve been lamenting at society’s preoccupation with appearances for some time; perhaps we’re just so tired of the whole “survival of the most beautiful” game; perhaps we have our own self esteem struggles and stories to share; perhaps we’re just curious about the different perceptions of beauty across cultures; perhaps a loved one so dear to us is battling with self image and self worth issues; or perhaps we’re simply looking for people with similar struggles so we know that we’re never alone. Whatever our reasons may be – no, we’re not here by coincidence.

Neither have I started this blog by chance. Growing up, self esteem was something I constantly struggled with. Not only was I of mixed heritage and therefore “strange looking” compared to my peers, having lived in various parts of the world, the conflicting expectations and perceptions of beauty in different cultures confused and plagued me. I soon realized though that I was not alone in these struggles. That we all face them at one point of time or another. It’s the kind of experience that we know everybody has faced but not many are willing to talk about.

This blog is not just part of a healing process for me, but it’s also my attempt to use my experiences to make a difference in a small but meaningful way. It is my hope that this site will be a voice for many and at the end of the day, we will not only support and encourage each other, but we will also learn and grow together through the sharing of experiences and stories.

I will be updating this blog regularly with interesting articles on the different perceptions of beauty across cultures, my own personal anecdotes and stories, tips from self help books and authors on how to love ourselves more, and more stories on campaigns and initiatives around the world to spread healthier notions of beauty and sexuality!

So, what’re you waiting for? Subscribe today! And you’ll never be left out! Any new stories or words of encouragement and you’ll be the first to know! Comment away on any of the posts, join the conversation and be part of this community today! May we all grow, learn and inspire together! 🙂

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9 Responses to “Not Here by Coincidence”

  1. Edwin Says:

    I think that is part and parcel of globalization…Well, coming from different can have it strength too…Like being more culturally sensitive and being more understandable…Look at how the pure western culture can be so discriminative at times…Singapore is more bearable of diversity…my 2cents worth of comments 🙂

  2. summerloving Says:

    hello mariko!

    great blog 🙂 i think beauty has many definitions today and we certainly shouldn’t classify beauty as simply physical, or skin deep. I especially like the Dove campaigns for real beauty that has been publicized recently – I think they are truly campaigns which encourage women to display beauty in the ordinary and to celebrate being who they are, or who they are created to be.

    keep writing! will be great to hear your opinions on the different viewpoints of beauty and cultural differences associated with it.

    ~rachel 🙂

  3. TeE Says:

    Hey mariko! 🙂

    Haha, I’ve had less problems with how i look, but more with how people judge you based on your articulation, and how they discriminate just because you have a different interest and opinion about everything.

    So yea, discrimination sux, but it’s everywhere, at least in the Singapore that I know. Life’s a struggle. 🙂

  4. notjustskindeep Says:

    Hey Edwin! 🙂 🙂

    It seems to me that you value not just the physical appearance of the person but also the qualities and traits that the person exhibits such as cultural sensitivity!

    I have to agree with you that although being different and unique can entail alienation and incomprehension but at the same time, it can make a person more open and accepting, which are important qualities and maybe part of inner beauty!

    May I ask just out of curiosity in order to understand some of the perceptions of beauty here, when you’re attracted to a girl, what are usually the things that attract you to her? 🙂 🙂

    Cheers,
    Mariko

  5. notjustskindeep Says:

    Hey Rachellll!!!!!!

    Like you, I loved the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty too! So, I will certainly have an entry about that campaign soon. Do pop over when you can and you’ll probably see an entry on that soon!!! 😛

    I have to agree with you babe that there are many definitions of beauty today which extend beyond the physical. Perhaps part of the reason for this is the emergence of campaigns like the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty which have been championing healthier notions of beauty and celebrating inner beauty.

    Just curious though, do you think our world today is still largely obsessed with physical appearances but gradually shifting towards recognizing the inner beauty of individuals? Or do you think that we have reached a stage when we’ve realized the meaninglessness of physical beauty and are searching for deeper notions of beauty? In other words, to what extent do you think our world today values physical beauty, as compared to inner beauty?

    Cheers,
    Mariko

  6. notjustskindeep Says:

    Hey Tee!!! 🙂

    I find it very interesting that you have broached other factors besides one’s physical appearance that can lead to less acceptance!

    Do you think then that if you want to be deemed as attractive in a particular society, it means having to conform to the norms and expectations of the society as well? In other words, do you think attractiveness and beauty can entail conformity to social constructs and norms???

    I would also definitely like to say… I know sometimes it really doesn’t feel good when people are unable to accept your unique views and perspectives. I experience that too as you well know :). But ultimately, at the end of the day, we just have to be ourselves, and those people in our lives who are worthy of our love and devotion will be those who love us for who we are, weird and all. 🙂

    Stay Tee alright? And see you real soon! I’m still patiently waiting for July 4th!!!

    Cheers,
    Mariko

  7. JANE. Says:

    HELLO MARIKO! :DD
    Your latest post is so very interesting! HHAHAHHA. x:
    ♥!

  8. notjustskindeep Says:

    Hey Jane!!!!

    Thank you thank you!!! Glad you liked my post :). Do keep reading and sharing your thoughts on my posts, okay?

    *Hugs*
    Mariko

  9. maeg Says:

    Ciao bella!

    A common phrase used here, and it’s true – beauty is appreciated and exalted in this country, I suppose, in all countries.

    Beauty is very subjective – as you said, the perception of beauty is different across cultures. Also, it has evolved (think Rubenesque art).

    So yes, no matter how many times we say or hear the phrase, “don’t judge a book by its cover”, we will – maybe not on purpose, but at least subliminally.

    Think about it, how many times has a warm smile and kind eyes made given you the impression that the person is good? and with the growing population of the world, appearances seem to act as that first filter.

    Maybe it’s something so ingrained in us its just part of instinct – maybe, but then I suppose that’s something I hope to find out through this blog =)

    Good luck bella, ciao! baci!

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