How Social Media Has
We all know the negativity that surrounds social media and more often than not it's something we've all experienced time and time again. The anxiety it can instill in us, the comparison we force upon ourselves and the idea that someone else lives a perfect life - when in reality it is simply a highlight reel. But what about the positives?
What about the ability it has to bring like minded people together? To offer inspiration? To empower people? To empower women!
This industry may well be new and it may well have its doubters but look at what women are achieving with the help of social media platforms. This isn't to say that all of us aren't also empowered by the rise of social media but as a feminist who surrounds herself day in and day out with women who are pushing the boundaries of what was once expected of them, I think it's time we celebrated what social media has done for us.
Inspired by International Women's Day and the rise of the female entrepreneur - here's how social media has empowered the next generation of women.
Social media has given many of us the ability to connect so easily with people who share the same passions, the same loves and the same interests. It's given us an outlet to be able to share topics, opinions and content that we ourselves have created and to share them quickly and with ease. Stereotypes in the work place have often seen women as the quieter worker, perhaps lacking the confidence they need to realise how important their voice is, but social platforms in the 2000's allow us a safety net to grow our confidence and our voice. Often seen as a negative for some, the ability to work on our most confident voice and being able to counteract and break down previous stereotypes, is surely a positive for those who crave a secure platform for their voice. A platform that bolsters our ability to network safely and confidently is something I thrived on in the early days of proving my brand and it's worth in the industry.
Take the #metoo movement as a prominent and global example of social media used to not only give a voice to those who deserved one but to also empower that voice to be heard worldwide. Yes, the need for a voice to shout about sexual assault was a need we all wish we didn't have to witness, but my first hand experience of the movement showed me how even years after my assault, my voice travelled all the way to an arrest and conviction. Social media has given voices to those who previously weren't believed, previously didn't feel strong enough to come forward and previously felt like they may be alone - they could not have been less alone. These platforms are now a hub of support, of change and of action for those of us who felt our voice drowned in a sea of stereotypes. A 5 letter hashtag from a prominent name gave so many women globally the power to have their voices heard and had an impact both on and off social media - that is the power of our voices. That is how we empower ourselves and help to empower those less privileged than us.
Social media has helped us to create an industry that barely existed 10 years ago. The rise of the influencer, of the blogger and of the content creator has been phenomenal and quite simply has exploded into the mainstream. Look at how many girl boss entrepreneurs are being created because social platforms have given women an outlet to share their creativity. Whether you agree with the industry as a whole or only choose to follow the occasional female creator online, the impact influencers have on shopping habits, on brand power and on raising other women up is undeniable. I have a career that has reaped the benefits of social media, allowing me to create and maintain my brand image and to continue to earn a living through my work. Social media has empowered so many women to turn their hobbies into careers and their side hustles into huge brands - just think of how Mrs Hinch has turned her cleaning habits into a full time job. Or how makeup artists now have a global voice to share their skills. Or how those with interior goals have opened up their houses to the social masses and offered pinspiration worldwide. Or people like me - with or without an education in fashion, have been given a platform to share their fashion choices and tips. What an incredible industry to be part of.
So the next time you feel inhibited by the negatives of social platforms so often shouted from the rooftops, think about how empowered women are becoming and how we can continue the trend and empower the next generation of girl bosses who will continue to change the world.