Are you feeling beautiful?... March 04 2015
Or are you waiting for a hashtag to come along to tell you that you are?... If like me you use Instagram, then its probably the latter.
Now if you know me well, you will know I love IG, its a nice place to hang out, to post pretty pictures and to connect with lovely people and it is 'mostly' really good fun, until that is a hashtag comes along that makes you feel a little uneasy.
I'm talking about the one thats been doing the rounds lately #20beautifulwomen .. yeah .. that one.
I think the idea behind it, is that you pick/tag 20 women who inspire you, women that you admire, women that you find beautiful, strong or otherwise and I'm guessing it was intended to make you and those around you feel good and beautiful and empowered?... women championing and supporting other women? a show of solidarity?
How can that be when so many women are excluded, remember way back in the day (think secondary school PE skirts and sports knickers, no actually don't, those days are best forgotten!) when you never got picked for that netball team and you watched the tallest or prettiest or sportiest girls get picked first every time?... yeah ... that. all over again.
And thats where my problem lies.
I just don't get it... picking 20 women? Impossible. What about all the others that haven't been tagged? If you happen to end up being the little beaut sitting at home feeling like 'Billie no mates' tapping your screen over and over again, looking at the names popping up and hoping to get a mention and still its a no, how can that possibly make you feel good? It was a 'no' for me for a while too, so I 'get that feeling. Then suddenly like buses the 'tags' all came along together 'phew' yay ... finally I had been welcomed into the beautiful club! It was beginning to feel like I might be waiting at that bus stop for a very long time.
Ok, ok, so I totally get that hashtags are just a bit of fun and maybe I shouldn't be taking this whole thing so seriously and I can hear some of you shouting at the screen "don't get so hung up about it, its just a frickin hashtag" but on this occasion it didn't sit well with me. Social media is a very powerful tool that can make you feel wonderful if the likes are rolling in but can leave you feeling crushed if you ain't feelin' the love!
I just don't feel comfortable with the idea of people (women) anybody feeling excluded or left out and those feelings turning into any kind of insecurities, it makes me want to reach out and protect those looking in from the outside wanting to be a part of it, I want to run and open the door and let them all in. lets face it, we all want to feel popular and we all want to be liked, its human nature and its natural to want to be told that we are beautiful too, however strong we may appear to be.
So. I just want to shout out to every single woman on the planet or can I change that to every human being on the planet?... remember what I said about not leaving folk out! If you've been waiting to be told you are beautiful, the bus just stopped especially for you, hop on board baby! You don't need to sit around waiting for a hashtag anymore.
Allison x x x