It all started with a non-stick pan and an innocent picture on Instagram.
I was just about to make some homemade ghee, and I posted a photo of the pan with 3 gorgeous sticks of grass-fed butter waiting to get all melty. Then it happened. Someone decided to shame me for using a non-stick pan. The fact that I’m temporarily living with a roommate with all my own kitchen pans packed up in storage was really of no consequence to the shamer who got pretty snarky about me [paraphrase] “not using my influence as I should be.”
It made me angry for a little while, but more than that, it made me think of the image that I and other healthy-living personalities / bloggers put out into the world. And too often, what I see is this expectation that we appear perfect. We tend to get called out on it. It’s exhausting.
But, it’s not just me. Recently, a fellow blogger posted a picture of her dinner—including some wrinkly looking hot dogs—and felt compelled to justify that she’d just microwaved them. Turns out she’d just spent the day preparing a meal for 40 other people and was too exhausted to cook but she didn’t want to get called out for her microwaving ways.
What this makes me question is why we, as a collective, push into non-stick-pan-shamer’s territory and instead of trying to hide that fact we’re not perfect. Yes, I have a responsibility to educate, and I’m well aware of the social audience that I get to work with on a daily basis. I don’t take that lightly.
But what I don’t want to convey is that if you can’t afford to grow your own produce in pristine soil that’s then washed by unicorn tears and dried by fairy wings, you suck and might as well pack it in. It’s this tendency to jump on each other’s imperfections that really has to stop. The dietary elitism isn’t serving us.
So you know what, InstaShamer, here are a list of other imperfect things I do:
- Bake food on aluminum foil sometimes! Oh, the horror.
- Wash my hair with regular shampoo and conditioner. (Gave no ‘poo an honest try a few times…I didn’t love it.)
- Use plastic ziptop bags. Gasp!
- Consume way too much chocolate. Sometimes even the stuff with soy lecithin.
- Eat meat that’s not grass-fed or organic. Grass-fed meat from Uruguay makes it into my cart, too.
I could go on.
You know what though? I do lots of other things right, and I don’t need people to think that I’m perfect, just that I’m real. Not only that I’m real but that living a Paleo lifestyle isn’t just doable, it’s awesome. I care about helping others be better, not perfect.
After all, the world needs more encouragers and fewer critics. I’m off to cook my breakfast, and you know what? I’m using that non-stick pan.