Great question... but I guess you answered it yourself... the meaning of vanity is conceit, futility, vainglory, pride, arrogance - add ignorance to it or just foolishness and lack of priority!
That's a good question, ii3rittles. It all comes back to comfort; often, it is easier to do nothing and dream than it is to actually carry said dream out. The accomplishment of the dream requires effort, work, time and choice. Choice is the hardest motivation.
If I leave it a dream, it is perfect and pure. There's no lopsided portrait trees, decks that slant or mistakes to be fixed. In the dream, I didn't have to make six nail holes for one nail, trying to get the frames straight. In that dream, I did it perfectly.
Many of us put a lot of stock in how we are seen; I don't like to be seen as a failure, so, more often than I'd like, I stick to what is safe, what I have an aptitude for. This is not healthy, but is a sacrifice my pride feels willing to endure as my mind's eye says I'm perfect. I so desperately want to be a great Dad, not just a good one, but there are things I have to do to make that so. I want my kids to look up at me with pride. Messing up, makes me feel like a failure, so if I stick to what I'm good at, then I won't disappoint them.
And then there's laziness. I'm too comfortable on the couch, the game's on, I only have 16 hours of awake time, I can dream it better...
I hope this helps.
There are lot of factors to this. One that is pretty obvious these days is how media over emphasizes and capitalizes the current society's idea of 'beauty'.
Because they want to be "accepted"
What is terrifying is also our definition of "healthy" is changing to support the masses who want to be underweight.
Take a look at BMI for instance, this "tool" that doctors use to determine whether an individual is overweight or not statse that a 5'4" woman should fit into a weight range of 105-140lbs. It doesn't take into account bust size, bone structure, or muscle mass.
What this means is someone like myself, who has a lot of muscle mass but weights outside of that category is "obese", despite the fact that I am stronger and more fit than a girl my size who weighs 105 lbs. the 105lb individual (depending on her bone structure and bust size) may have too little body fat which will result in hormonal issues that can do such things as make it impossible for her to have children.
People are risking their health for vanity for two reasons: firstly because they are being told that everyone should look a particular way, including by the health care system (the government support BMI usage as opposed to % body fat, which was popular in the early 90s. BMI is very quick, you need a calculator, body fat percentage requires measurements and takes time). Secondly they are risking their health because they are afraid of the social implications of not fitting in with the "norm" that they are told exists.
Because they yearn for acceptance and our society has some bad ideas about how to look good. If you ever look at the models on those shows on TV they all look under nourished, yet that is what is touted as "Beauty". It's sad because real beauty comes from within yet the pressure to look like these people is tremendous and promoted even further by the media and their photoshopped pictures.
It could be that people who do this do not realize that they are risking their health, but more than likely is due to wanting to "look good" by society's standards.
Unless there is a well known risk to what they want to do, health is never thought of,like everyone else you jest want to look good.
Because they want to love themselves and they want others to adore them as well. But in their attempt to love themselves, they become obsessed with becoming perfect. It is upsetting and they will have many issues because of it. At all times, they will be able to point out something that is wrong about themselves. If someone comments that they weigh too much, they could go on a depressed rage of bolimia or anorexia.
Most people consider it a sign of weakness. However, they force themselves to undergo physical and mental pain to reach their goal. It's kind of like an obscession. There are many reasons of doing these things. Wanting to fit in, wanting to change something about their life, control, retaliation, OCD, social reasons, etc.
In psychology it is at times a sign of control issues, but not always. They don't think they can control much or control their lives. But how they look and what they appear to be is something they believe they can control. So they take out their lack of control on themselves. It is a kind of self-harm. There are many psychological reasons they could be doing it.
If I had to guess I would say it's because of low self esteem and confidence.
beauty lies in the eyes of beholder..it depends on ones outlook ...but (sadly) in todays scenario beauty has been taken up as a sellable commodity...the race of materialism has changed its definition & now one who is capale of adding to finances some how is considered as beautiful no matter if moral & ethics are turned down.....this materialistic greed maekes one dare to experiment over their bodies on the cost of health.
Many are simply uninformed and others value some perceived gains if they are vain. Still others may have a combination of these two factors in play.
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