If you conceive of your "best self" as physically fit and slim, that's great. But you don't get to tell me I am not my "best self" if I'm a fat couch potato.
What bothers me about the phrase "best self" is the sense of judging someone's overall quality. I don't believe I have a best self. I can be more or less happy, more or less healthy, more or less connected to others, etc., but I don't believe changes in my subjective well-being make me "better" or "worse." I certainly don't believe changes in superficial factors such as looks, weight, or income make someone better or worse. I'm not comfortable with judging and rating myself or others that way.
I didn't see that Fluer or anyone else said anything about you or your best self. That is something for you to decide.
I think you are misunderstanding how I use the phrase (and see it used elsewhere). It is not a judgment someone makes about another person. It is a judgment someone makes about oneself. Actually, not so much a judgment but an investment or attitude of "I will be the best I can be" or "I will make the best of this situation."
Exactly. And I mean no judgement on anyone, as I've said, I am overweight myself. I'm not going around 'hating on' people for not meeting my standards. I think that 'standards' are probably the wrong word, anyway. 'Criteria' would be better. Again, I'm not going around at men saying 'not you, not you, not you, oh, you are six four with a six pack, you'll do'. (Moot anyway, as I'm in a relationship) I just find that in my experiencecertain characteristics are linked with certain others which I find attractive. Others may have different ideas, and that is fine as well! I'm a little bemused as to why that seems to be causing so much offense and consternation.
As I said in the part of my post you deleted when you quoted it,
It's totally reasonable to want a mate whose lifestyle fits with yours. But there is a difference between judging someone's suitability to be your romantic partner and simply judging someone. Your choice of words -- "too much time slumped over the television" -- implies that you are doing the latter. How much is too much? Why is slumping assumed? What does "an upbeat, can-do attitude" have to do with fitness/activity level?
Fleur, do you really not see how the phrase "I would also not be impressed by someone who spent too much time slumped over the television" can be taken to mean that you would think poorly of someone who watches a lot of TV? If not, you are correct that we will just have to disagree.
TD, if "best self" is a concept you apply only to yourself, why the statement that your hypothetical weight-gaining SO would no longer be his "best self" and wouldn't like himself? How do you know unless you ask him? Since you can't ask him because he's hypothetical, it seems you're making an assumption based on stereotypes of overweight people/couch potatoes.
I admit I've never seen the term "best self" used by anyone else and I personally find it distasteful because it implies some objective standard of quality and seems to mean something very different from making the best of a situation or striving to be the best you can in some particular domain
that you value. But you obviously have the right to judge yourself however you like. Applying it to others, which you have done in this thread and others, is what I find problematic and potentially offensive whether you mean it that way or not.