Dove Ad shows strangers may see you more clearly

female self criticismWe’ve found the holiday break is the perfect time to catch up with a few viral videos. You know how it is, you start looking at a single 3 minute video and half an hour later, you’re watching a random TED talk on a topic you didn’t even know you cared about!

We’ve certainly seen several great videos recently – inspiring, humbling and worth sharing. One in particular, sponsored by Dove, which is one of our client, Unilever’s brands resonated deeply with us at Female Breadwinners. Self-criticism is rife among professional women but it prevents us from reaching our true potential.

Women are frequently self-critical: at work, as mothers and certainly on our physical appearance. Interestingly, this unkind view is not shared by those around us. Watch this surprising video and contemplate how you would describe yourself. While it’s widely recognised the cosmetic and fashion industry blatantly photoshop models, we still aim for an ideal that literally does not exist in nature. Women become self-conscious and negatively biased in how they view themselves.

Dove’s recent experiment gave a fresh perspective on this trend. A forensic artist asks women belonging to different ethnic backgrounds and age groups to describe themselves. Without actually looking at the women, the artist created a portrait of them – based solely on their self-descriptions. He then created a second image of the same women based on the description of their features by another individual. The two portraits were then shown to the women. The difference between them was stark – with the self-description drawing being far less flattering.

The video highlights the need for women to become more appreciative of how amazing we already are. The truth is that people around you probably see your beauty far more clearly than you do. Imagine the toll this continual ‘blindness’ takes on our confidence with loved ones and in the workplace.

What could you achieve if you viewed yourself as positively as other people saw you?

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