Does money make you happier?
Does being healthier make you happier?
Does being beautiful make you happier?
The truth is that the desire for any one any of these aspirations will not transcend your happiness. We all know this to be true, but it does not stop us looking critically at ourselves and our lives and wanting change.
It’s sometimes argued, including by psychologists, that wanting to make alterations to our looks can undermine us as a person. Some people will shun cosmetic procedures because they feel righteous about the ageing process. Just as many do not tell friends, family or confidants about mini improvements as they do not wish to be judged.
Physical looks have been a preoccupation of women for time immemorial so why are we getting so hung up about whether cosmetic surgery is a healthy fixation? The truth is that nearly everyone has a hang up about a feature that they have always disliked, and the fact is, it’s easier now than ever to do something about it.
It is assumed that most people seeking cosmetic alterations are unhappy, psychologically challenged or self-centred to seek out what is often thought of as beautification. The truth is the vast majority of patients are grounded and not wishing for the unobtainable. Many patients already take care of themselves, their health, exercise and have a healthy perspective of both themselves and their lives.
Many seek a small confidence boost rather than social advantage and are only motivated by positive, not negative emotions. And that’s because although money or pursuing a healthier lifestyle cannot by itself make you happy; they do contribute to confidence and success which can improve happiness.
The press continues to demonise cosmetic surgery and cosmetic enhancements, but this is most often focused on very bad examples where things have gone wrong, rather than the many successful procedures which have been thoughtfully and carefully performed.
The younger generation are more likely to pursue a cosmetic procedure that will physically and dramatically alter their presentation of themselves. Strangely, people in their 20’s and 30’s are more concerned with ageing than the 40, 50 or 60 year old patient.
But while the press seem negative about cosmetic surgery, in some ways they are driving the demand for it. They feed fears about ageing, often presenting it as a negative rather than positive experience. I’ve always said that part of the ageing process is acceptance, and practitioners in this industry should act to dispel myths and teach everyone to prolong their physical and mental health for a balanced and happy life.
Feeling good about yourself requires multiple elements – physical, psychological, developmental and environmental. It is much less about beauty, self-indulgence, money or success.
Cosmetic procedures are for most, a very small part of what is hopefully a very fulfilling, happy and wholesome life. It is disingenuous to suggest that undergoing cosmetic enhancements will either make you look freakish or make you happier.