Visit our Sister Sites:

Overcome Unrealistic Expectations

Overcome Unrealistic Expectations Patti Ashley, PhD

In her Academy Award-winning performance as Judy Garland in the film Judy, Renee Zellweger eloquently portrayed the hopelessness hidden beneath the studied appearance of a seemingly bright and happy woman, a movie star who by all rights should have had it all. In her acceptance speech, Zellweger attributed her award to Garland, saying, “Judy Garland, you are certainly among the heroes who unite and define us.”

A hero is a person we admire or idealize for their courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities. Based on that definition, Garland might not seem like a hero, but her suffering unites us in the collective hope of overcoming the pain she was incapable of healing in her lifetime. Garland’s pain derived from the constant and unrealistic expectations she tried to live up to. So many of us suffer from similar expectations pushed on us by the media, social media, family, friends, and even ourselves. Isn’t it time we learn to overcome this pain by embracing and loving our authentic selves?

Zellweger was a perfect fit for the role of Judy Garland, successfully conveying Garland’s vulnerability and sensitivity. Zellweger lost quite a bit of weight to play the role. In the Bridgett Jones movies, she played an average-sized woman who was sometimes fat-shamed because she didn’t live up to the ideal body-image standard. As Bridgett, Zellweger portrayed the experiences of many women wishing to match society’s body-weight expectations.