“I don’t care if no one likes my Facebook photos.”
Said no one ever.
Serious blog alert. The social media generation is now being accused of being addicted to their smartphones, with one of the reasons being touted as their constant need for positive reinforcement by their friends, fans and followers.
With people constantly flouting their rock hard abs and bikini bodies (with the help of an Instagram filter, naturally) there’s an overwhelming amount of ‘likes’ on photos of young people in their underwear, whilst a photo of a beautiful sunset doesn’t quite draw in the same level of attention.
Worryingly though, statistics released this week by the anti-bullying charity Ditch the Label, claim that 40% percent of young people said they felt bad if nobody liked their selfie’s and 35% said their confidence was directly linked to the number of followers they had on social media. I mean, seriously
Since I grew up in a pre-social media world and only really got into MySpace in my 20’s, this was never an issue for me. I’ve seen some of my buddies’ social media followings leap from 2k to 20k overnight (bought some followers much?) in a rather cringe worthy bid to appear more popular.
Marciel Hopkins is a body-positive activist, Miss South Africa 2016 finalist and plus-size model for London-based MOT Models ‘Curves’ division. She is a motivational speaker and Instagram star (with a following of 51,300,) and campaigns for positive body image. Guess what kids, she’s a size 14.
Marciel said, “Young people should not let what they see on social media get them down. It’s not worth fighting a daily battle with your food and body. Bodies are different and we can’t all look the same. We are spoon-fed images of unrealistic body goals where people are airbrushed to perfection. Social media has influenced the way people want to look and this is dangerous for those of a younger generation as this could influence their health for the rest of their lives
“Too many young girls think they have to be skinny and slim to be popular. People instead need to strive towards being the healthiest and happiest version of themselves whatever their natural shape. I’m happy and healthy as a natural size 14. I haven’t weighed myself since the Miss South Africa pageant, to stay away from ‘negative voices’. Weight does not determine anyone’s worth
“I want to encourage people to embrace who they are and realise that a healthy body can take many forms. I work as a life coach and there is nothing better than seeing the transformation of someone who has been fighting with body issues.”
Well said Marciel. Pass me that last piece of cake.