So many of us follow hundreds of people everyday on Instagram. You may be into following your favourite celebs, fashion stars or mega-bloggers, with a few added family members and friends mixed into the bunch. You might be selective in who you follow or you may be freely pressing the "follow" button like a nervous twitch. Whatever method you use for selecting who you follow on Instagram, may I suggest you try something different today?
This weekend I spent a fair bit of time taking in what Instagram has to offer. I was sick of seeing the same pictures time after time, from the 800+ people I follow. So, I looked around through pictures that seemed to appear from every continent on the planet and enjoyed every minute of seeing how different we all are, and from what angle we all think we take our best selfies.
While seeing some rather beautiful comments on various pictures, I also came across some truly horrendous troll moments. What is it about hiding behind a computer screen or iPhone that gives people the guts to attack others in such a vile manner? Why do so many of us feel the need to drag people down? This time filtering through hundreds of pictures and thousands of truly horrible remarks set something off in me and it would lead to hours more on Instagram.
I got to thinking that somehow commenting on other people's pictures, in a positive manner, could counteract the hatred that I was seeing all over the social network. So, from a personal account, I went about leaving comments on pages. Women and men of all ages, skin colour, shape and size got some love from this little fashion goose. It started out innocently and then I just couldn't stop. With every comment left, I felt empowered and as if I was finally using Instagram for something other than liking yet another celeb flaunting their latest designer goodies for the world to see. Then I made a decision. Every week (or every day if I can swing it) I would find a way, through various breaks in the days, to leave 100 comments and likes on totally random Instagram pages. Each will have meaning, be straight from the heart, and the dagger in the heart of every troll out there actively hurting the community.
If you feel the same way, may I encourage you do the same? It's amazing how a social network, that can sometimes feel shallow and self-absorbed, can become a vehicle for change and goodness. So, I'm not preaching, but merely suggesting an action to redirect the course of a total stranger's day.
Here's all you need to do:
After scrolling through your followers' images, head over to the search page on Instagram. Go to the hashtag search button and type in the word "Selfie." Then, watch as picture after picture appears before you of both men and women sharing a personal moment and putting it out there for the whole world to judge. Only, instead of judging, show nothing but love. Take to that comment section and share something wonderful with the human being staring back at you. Tell them you love their hair, their unique way of doing makeup or just everything about them.
Trust me, leaving the comment will feel 100 times better than a simple "like" on a picture of a bunch of flowers (but, yes I will continue to like those too).