I followed Essena O’Neill WAY WAY WAY back, before I even know what blogging really was. I used her to inspire me to live a fit and healthy life style (I didn’t get far). But the start of November kicked off with Essena announcing how she has quit social media based on how it portrays a false reality. She edited her captions on Instagram to explain why her photos weren’t real.
Although I agree that social media can create a lot of anxiety amongst those who use it I do believe it’s also an incredible source of information and understanding. Ironically, I discovered that Essena is on a social media blackout via Twitter. I find out much of my information through there and I think it’s wonderful to get instant updates like that.
The same goes with blogging. I discover so many new and wonderful things through blogs and the internet as a whole. In addition to that I find that not only do I discover, I also grow because of it. Since blogging for example I have become occupied, full of ideas and feel creative. I can speak my mind, share advice and try to help others look at things a different way.
If I only reach one person then that means more to me than anything. But imagine if I had a huge following? I could help them too. That’s why followers matter to me, in that sense. Helping people, inspiring people and being inspired by them is what is so wonderful about the internet, social media and blogging.
Okay, so a lot of bloggers tend to create an idea of what life is like that perhaps isn’t quite how it is. But that’s why I urge my readers (who are also bloggers) to discuss things from the heart, be real and be themselves. It’s entirely your choice if you want to create an escape for your readers which will inspire them to move to New York, Paris or London. Just because you are giving off that “fake” reality, doesn’t mean that it isn’t achievable. People have done it and you can do it too. Just do it for the right reasons.
PAID TO SHARE
One of the things Essena mentions is how she was paid to wear clothes and write articles on behalf of brands. I’m glad she clarified that there is nothing wrong with doing this as we shouldn’t feel bad about working with brands we love and believe in. But there seems to be a stigma attached to collaborating…
There was an image shared on Twitter via Leanne Woodfull taken from a magazine she’d worked with in the past saying about how everyone is “over” blogging. How blogging is fake, contrived and irrelevant because people are plugging brands and getting paid/free things to do so. Why is that a problem?
Personally, I like to show styles which are achievable, something in which you can go out and buy. For example, if Prada were to offer me £2,000 to promote a leather handbag I would refuse. Why? Firstly, I don’t wear leather (personal preference) but also because designer fashion isn’t what I’m particularly interested in. It’s just not me. That’s fair enough right?
You can be a paid blogger and still care about what you’re writing about. That’s all that is really important.
YOU’RE IN CONTROL
Although I admire Essena for taking a stand, I do believe she could use social media to fight the fakery as opposed to leaving it altogether. All it takes is being real and showing people it’s okay to have acne or wear PJs all day.
You are the one who has the power to show the world what your life is like.Whether it’s just how you see it or how you want others to see it. I love Twitter accounts of blogger’s who share their POV with their followers. I think it’s important to not just share what will be “approved” by others. It’s YOUR choice, speak up and be yourself.