I recently started seeing instagram photos which are part of a new challenge for women to show support for each other. So basically what it requires is a female friend to nominate you to post a photo of yourself, which you post, which then shows that they support you. This is indeed a positive social media trend that I believe is needed - especially with our females on social media While it's refreshing to see a positive social media trend among women, it does make you question why women supporting each other is even a challenge to begin with?
Social media is a powerful tool, and one that can be used in a positive way, so this is a refreshing trend. But I can't tell you the number of times I've watched, or listened to, women look at other girls' social media photos/videos for the sole purpose of mocking them. We women are so focused on finding the flaws in each other and social media has, I fear, made the problem worse. It's easier than ever in today's world to pull up a photo of an acquaintance, co-worker, or celebrity with the purpose of finding the "bad".
Women can be especially hard on themselves, and the same critical eye can be just as hard when looking at other women. The criticism often ranges from a hairstyle, to wardrobe choice, and for those with children their parenting. It’s become normal to see girls making fun of someone's shoes, without thinking that maybe she just likes those shoes and maybe those shoes make her feel like a superstar, and that is 100% ok! There are a lot of styles, and just because she’s not wearing a certain brand, color, or style it doesn’t mean she’s an idiot. I don’t know what it is that makes some women feel this need to tear each other down, but I do believe social media has created a space where it’s easy for women to be critical of each other.
While I fully support the current social media challenge of women supporting women, and it's positive message, it's something that I wish was more of an everyday occurance. While I will concede that there are a lot of women whose only connection is through social media, making social media the best way to show support, I hope that is not the point you hang on here. In other words, I wish women could be more supportive of each other without the need to prove it on social media simply because it's a trend.
Women who truly support each other have the ability to understand that we each live different lives, experience different things, and can respect another woman for who she is. Women who support each other understand they don’t have to agree about everything, or even anything, to see and appreciate the good qualities that all women possess. We all have connected with women on social media who are also women we see in real life because of work, family, or hobbies. These are often times the women who need your support the most, and also the ones we have the ability to support the most.
It's not always convenient or comfortable to show another woman compassion during a difficult time, or celebrate an achievement in real life (especially when you feel like a loser) as it is on social media. But those are the real moments when women supporting women are the most important. So to women everywhere, please don't let this just be a short moment of social media magic - make it part of your real life. Who knows the kind of positive change you can be for someone...