Click here before you read! Dove Commercial
Yesterday, I was scrolling through my Facebook feed and I saw a link for a Dove commercial that says “This Might Be The Best Dove Campaign We've Seen Yet”. I have a B.A. in Advertising and the moment I received my diploma, I never really thought about it again as far as my career goes. Getting that degree ended up feeling like a relationship gone bad and I had no interest in it being a part of my life. All told, I have 8 glorious years of college under my belt. It took me 6 years to get a degree in Advertising and one in Art History. I wish I could say it took me 6 yrs because I was out binge drinking, partying and having the “college experience” but that wasn't the case. I changed my major and transferred schools several times. I was also in the Army all 6 years, worked full time, toured with a band and commuted an hour each way for the last 3 years. I was also trying to stay awake long enough to keep a relationship going. I was tired…real tired. So let’s just say the people I dated during that time of my life really got the shaft.
I was a Fine Art major for a while and finally realized that I did not actually need a degree to make art. I was burning the candle at both ends and when it came down to it, I was probably not going to make a living with that degree. Even the best artists can’t live solely on their art, and I knew that as much as I wanted to be a great artist, I was mediocre at best.
So I switched my major to Advertising because I thought I could still be sort of artistic and pay my rent too. I quickly realized that it wasn’t really artistic at all. It was essentially a degree in lying and manipulation with the goal of getting people to buy a product. I hated it. I’m a straight shooter and have never possessed the ability to bullshit or kiss ass to claw my way to the top. Once again, my perception and expectations did not live up to the reality. I was out of money and energy and decided to stick with it just to get a diploma and get out. It was one of the few times in my life that I settled and knew it.
Looking back, I’m glad I did. Like a relationship, at 22, you don’t know who you are or what you want to be. All you know is what you have been told you are supposed to want and be. I think people should not be allowed to go to college or get married until they are at least 30. You need real world experience with people and professions to figure out what it is you truly want. I would probably be still in school and on my 15th major if I waited to figure it out the first time I went to college.
I found my career or actually my career found me when I was 31. I was a tattoo artist, made prosthetic limbs and fried bacon up in a pan for a while until somebody at the gym told me I should consider teaching a class. I thought to myself “Surely this bitch has lost her mind.” But she could not have been more right. And now almost 10 years later, I’m still at that same gym and it’s my world. I truly believe, it’s what I was meant to do. It comes easy for me and work doesn’t feel like work. I come home, binge eat, scoop some cat shit and hop on my computer to prepare for the next day. I’m addicted to my work and I’m on the constant search for knowledge to become a better trainer and I love every minute of it.
And there ya go…once again, the blog is going in a direction I had not intended….shocker. Allow me to redirect :)
Anyways, with my background in Advertising, I’m painfully aware that these companies care about one thing…dolla dolla bill y’all! $$ They don’t give a shit about anything but cash money. After all, the reason most of us work is to make money, so I can’t blame them for that. As much as I love my profession, I wouldn't do it if I found some sweet sugar mama to buy me endless pizzas and cats and live happily ever after…<holding breath>
I know that I’m a big ass sucker for packaging. I will pay $3.00 more for ice cream based purely on the container. My thought is, if they put that much time and energy into the container, surely they spent the same time on the actual product inside. I know that that is pure bullshit and more times than not, my expectations almost always exceed the reality….pretty much sums up my entire life….except for Totino’s Party Pizza. 4 pizzas for $5 and fucking delicious every time! My expectations were low on that shit, and that was the best surprise EVER!
I’m also a sucker for a good story. If a commercial can hit a chord in me that either makes me laugh or cry…I’m buying that shit. No questions asked…even if it’s not the best product. I get this brand loyalty for a good storyteller that is unexplainable. I don’t feel I need to analyze. I’m just going to take it for what it is. LORD knows, I've got much bigger fish to fry when it comes to fixing the shit that is wrong with me… (SHUT UP! I can hear you all agreeing with that statement. I know :)
So, here comes the point….
I clicked play on that Dove commercial and it sucked me in. Before I knew it, I was sitting at my desk with a cat in my lap crying. And when it was over, I just sat there, and then I watched it again. And then in my usual form, I felt it was my duty to spread the word. I posted it on Facebook and sent out the link to any of my friends that weren't on Facebook and demanded that they watch it and report back to me. They were all like “What is it about?” And I was like “I can’t tell you, It will ruin it. I want you to have the same experience I did.” I know they were all like “This bitch is cray.” But they also know that there will be a quiz later, so no point fighting it. Then I went to work and told all my clients about it and then sent them a link. So clients…take note…there will be a final exam and if you fail, the price will be 100 burpees…try me :)
I’m desperate for my clients who are also my friends to watch it, because every single time I train them, they are beating themselves up in one way or another. I spend a good part of my day saying “You are beautiful” “You are not weak” and most of all “How much of your life are you willing to sacrifice in the quest for the perfect body? Because I got news for ya, the moment you achieve your goal weight, you will find another flaw or something else wrong with your body to obsess about. You are going to spend your entire life working towards something you will never have because for some reason, you can’t see what other’s see.” And I have been there and battle that same issue everyday…it’s fucking exhausting. I want a day off from that shit. A day that I don’t think to myself…you are fat and ugly.
It’s especially hard to watch my clients lose weight after their “friends” and family told them they were fat. They kill themselves dieting and exercising and lose a ton of weight and then they obsess over the loose skin. And once their body fat drops out of their face and wrinkles they never had before suddenly appear. And then those same “friends”start telling them they look “sick” and they’ve “gone too far.”
I speak the truth when I say, not ONE of my clients has gone too far. They look amazing! The BEST part of my day is watching their face light up when somebody compliments them while we are training. THE BEST! Unless they compliment them too much and then they ask me…”Was I really that fat???” It happened again last week. And I said “Don’t take something good and turn it into something bad. Just say thank you and accept the compliment.”
I usually tell them they need new “friends” as well. Good friends build you up and support whatever path you are on. They will try to act like they are degrading you because you are either too fat or too thin and that they are concerned about your health or some other bullshit excuse. Those people are not assholes…they are the WHOLE ASS!
So for those of you that haven’t seen the commercial, I will give you the gist of the message. They went all over the world and put a sign that said “beautiful” over one door and another one that said “average” over a door next to it. So everyday these women had to choose a door based on how they felt about themselves. Almost all of them picked average. Some because they felt average and some because society told them they were. There were some that felt beautiful, but thought they would be viewed as vain in they chose the beautiful door. The one that really got me was the woman that walked up, looked at the signs and then turned around and left. I saw myself in her. THAT is probably what I would have done a month ago when I was feeling like a complete failure at life…unless one of my clients were around. Then I would have walked through the beautiful door and dragged them kicking and screaming behind me.
It’s just sad. The world we live in is hyper focused on the surface. They like me are buying “products” aka people based on the outside package, not the actual product itself. It’s so hard to watch my clients and friends who are beautiful people inside and out struggle for the perfect body and completely forget that they are SO much more than that. What makes them so beautiful to me has nothing to do with the scale.
Do I think Dove gives a shit about building women up? Hell no! They are using our emotions to sell products and I’m all in! Because no matter what their intentions are, the message is beautiful.
I know that getting people to see beyond the surface is a losing battle. But I do believe showing this commercial to your daughters is a step in the right direction. It can start a dialogue that can change the way they treat others and more importantly, how they few themselves. Generation after generation has repeated the same mistake, because that is how they were raised. I think it’s time to break the cycle and skip some generations and start a new cycle. A cycle of kindness.