Today Body Gossip – a positive body image campaign who, in their own words; ‘campaigns through Arts and Education to empower every body to be the best version of themselves and rock their own brand of gorgeous.’ announced a new initiative in partnership with Cosmopolitan UK to promote kindness and positivity on social media.
‘Ten years ago, if you were stressed, angry or bored you had to do things like listen to whale music whilst attempting to meditate, scream into a pillow or talk about your feelings with another human being. Now, however, all those negative feelings can all be channelled into our social media accounts, where there’s whole universe of people to argue with, injustices to rail against and TV shows mercilessly to slag off.’
– Natasha Devon, Body Gossip
The brains behind Body Gossip are trying to get us to use our virtual voices for good as they are such a prominent part of many (young) people’s lives and it can have a profoundly negative affect to see nothing but negativity on your timeline. I am always 100% behind everything that Body Gossip does but I am particularly in awe of this latest movement. Through what I do, something that I notice on a daily basis, day in and day out, is people putting themselves and other people down. In many contexts. It makes me so sad. There’s just no need for it. People spend so much time saying horrible things to each other from behind a computer screen that not only do they forget that the person on the receiving end of it is just that, a person, but they forget that they themselves have so many talents and are someone with a voice which could be being put to good use.
Positivity is contagious. I regularly talk about giving people compliments and generally spreading positivity on a regular basis. It seems like such a small and irrelevant thing but it can make such a difference to someone’s day(s). Every compliment and nice thing that you say to someone helps to battle negativity of all kinds.
And that’s exactly what Body Gossip are urging you to do for the next week.
‘At Body Gossip, we like to encourage positivity. We didn’t think Facebook, Twitter and Instagram needed yet more “ISN’T THIS AWFUL? SHALL WE GET THIS BANNED?” style interaction from campaigners, so instead we ask our community to reward the people doing good in the world. We draw attention to blogs, retailers and celebrities we love and try to be smart consumers by spending our money on brands actively encouraging body positivity (like Boots’ No7 who use real women in their adverts, Debenhams who have a range of mannequin sizes and Dove who make some awesome body confidence videos).
If you look at our Twitter account (@_BodyGossip), you’ll see in the past week we’ve said a mighty ‘HOO-RAH!” for:
Nupita Lyongo – For her brilliant speech on why everyone should feel beautiful at the annual Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon;
Jennifer Lawrence – For her continued services to kick-assery;
ASOS – For pledging not to photoshop their models on their website;
……And we’re always sharing blogs, pictures and quotes and drawing attention to other Twitter and Facebook users we love.
So, this week, along with Cosmo Online we are challenging YOU to do the same. We’re calling it the ‘Online Positivity Challenge’ –
What has inspired you in the past week?
Who do you know doing good in the World?
What was the last thing you heard that made you feel like your country/city/area was a great place to live?
Who are your style icons?
Which celebrities or public figures do you admire?
TELL YOUR FOLLOWERS.
For a whole week, every time you’re tempted to say something bitchy, negative or engage in combat with that troll, take a deep breath and keep the positivity going.
That way, next time we log on, not only will our social networking accounts be a more inspiring and positive place, we’ll see the ways in which we can work together to make the voices of women heard.’
I’m going to be following the conversation from this initiative all week. It’s only day one and already I’ve spotted a lot of positive exchanges between Tweeters.
Long may it continue!
Check out Body Gossip‘s website here: http://www.bodygossip.org
Follow them on Twitter: @_BodyGossip