American society is pre-occupied with the self. It is not just health, but “Beach Bodies”. It is not just making a living, it is “Think and grow rich”. It is not just security, it is extreme safety we’re after.
In all of this, people are led into self-judgment and self-doubt. The (legitimate fear) of others’ judgment develops. Insecurity is fed. Shame grows.
Or, the opposite reaction develops. Haughtiness, arrogance, and superiority complex are fed.
Either way, these attitudes are not just unhealthy (even if you do have a “Beach Body”), they are disproportionately weighted on the superficial and transitory.
These attitudes and expectations make slaves out of all who submit to them.
In theological terms, they are unwritten laws that demand perfection. No one can attain them, so people effectively become hypocrites, hiding behind the mask of their projected image.
Deep down, this develops anger, anxiety and depression because no one is free to be their ‘true self’. How very sad.