When I came across this phrase, the first thing that crossed my mind is the Fair & Lovely ad. For ages, they only support fairness, and try to point out the so called adverse effects of being a dusky damsel, in Indian context. No hard feelings but complexion is still a dominant factor in deciding match making, even today in Indian marriage market. A tsunami will not hit the shores if a person (read girl) is born fair or dark skinned, but the notion or the mentality that it is unfair to not be fair, is the culprit. Fair is unfair if it breeds discrimination and low self-esteem of an individual. This should be arrested and nipped in the bud, for it is time we start believing in the power of equality and raise above caste, creed, and gender discrimination, and usher the spirit of love and respect towards individuality. I would like to use this platform in sharing with you the lines, which enthralled me from the recent ad campaign launched by Dove, ‘Choose beautiful’: “Feeling beautiful is a personal choice”.
Fair is unfair if it has only one dimensional view of life, because in doing so, it is actually belittling every other things or possibilities. It brings about unwanted differences among people and forces them to be judgmental. This happens in the corporate world as well. It is just not enough to be a fair or an average performer- who wants to be that, anyway? No one, may be. Because it is associated with having low intellect or education. In this competitive world, we are always running a rat race to prove our worth to others, to get grade A in everything, because only the ‘cream’ employees take home a fat pay and bonus. Thus, we need to be perfect and perform exceptionally well, not once or twice but every time, if we have to remain in the good books of our bosses. So what if it takes a toll upon us? Pause, take a deep breath and ponder. Look at life from a fresh angle and see what you can change to make it better. Once you figure out, you will be surprised to see how life greets you. As for me, I figured out that it is important to find inner peace, accept yourself as you are, and compete with yourself rather than with others. That way, you will emerge to be a confident person ready to take on the myriad challenges that comes your way, every day. Stop wrecking your brain over the stereotypes of what is fair and what is unfair, just be yourself in the vast ocean of life and enjoy your being. As Mary Engelbreit rightfully said, “If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it.”
This piece was first written as a sample article for an upcoming magazine. I reproduced it in my blog today.