As we all know yesterday was International Women’s Day…a day to celebrate ALL females no matter the age, ethnicity, size, shape, color and everything that’s in between! I spent the day hanging out and shooting with @OfficiallyQuigley, @FrankVinyl and @DaniDazey (the woman behind these amazing photos and graphic tees).It was the perfect, on-the-whim way to spend Women’s Day…with four creative, beautiful, unique and inspiring women! The afternoon inspired this post…which was not a planned one, might I add. I just felt compelled to write my thoughts on the blogging space and how we can all be collaborative female bloggers and not competitive ones.In this day and age we talk so much about female empowerment, supporting each other, raising each other up. But, are we really putting our 100% into it? I question that A LOT when it comes to the blogging space and that’s just my honest opinion. Sometimes, as much as we post kickass quotes, comment, like and share…are we REALLY supporting each other or are we putting on a show for our own selfish reasons? Really think about it…if a blogger was to ask you how you gained 1000 followers in a day would you share your secret? If they were to ask you for the contact to the amazing hotel you stayed at last month would you send them the direct contact email? More often than not the answer is NO…you wouldn’t. And that you guys…is NOT the example of female empowerment.I get that this space is oversaturated and filled to the brim with girls trying to do the same thing. But if we all TRULY support each other, from an honest good-loving place then we all grow together, there is space for everyone! Below are some simple things I thought we could all do to collaborate rather than compete with each other.
- Connect on a deeper level – We are all so consumed with getting the perfect shot, having the most dreamy feed, growing our numbers that we forget…OH HEY WE ARE ALL REAL PEOPLE. We are not our Instagram accounts, we are not the number attached to our handles, we are not our engagement rate. I think the first step in NOT being competitive is pretending that number does not exist. Erase it! At the end of the day we are all human. Connect on a deeper level with the blogger you are sitting next to at an awkward brunch, don’t ignore her because “UGH she only has 50k followers”. Build connections and foster those connections because they will last longer than the lifetime of your last Instagram post. Trust me.
- Share the 411 – This is a tricky one because personally I have been in both situations. a. when I was asking for information and b. when I was giving information. I get that too much info may not be the most ideal scenario but if a blogger who you consider a friend asks for something…then share it! Don’t you want to see you friends succeed too? Hoarding your growth tactics, editing secrets and things of that nature is not the definition of “women supporting women”.
- Create Together – Once you have solid blogger friendships…you know, the girls you would invite to your wedding, baby shower and early retirement party. Create cool shit together! I left yesterday’s shoot feeling so inspired and empowered. People love to see girl gangs…there’s a reason the Spice Girls were so popular. Girl Power does exist, it’s out there in the universe with all it’s powerful energy!
- Support via Stories and Tags – This is a new trend on Instagram and I have a love-hate relationship with it because I was doing it long before it became a “thing”. But, the main point of it is awesome and if you do it from an honest place then YAY! Share accounts you truly love and are inspired by. Share smaller accounts that you want to support because you are a nice person.
- Give Credit where Credit is Due – Things are getting foggy on Instagram and a lot of girls content is starting to look the same, mine included! Things can get weird, competitive and nasty if people feel you are “stealing” ideas, edits etc. So, if you are inspired by a specific photo then give credit to the person who inspired your shot! If you are using someone’s preset then tell your followers that. Giving credit to those who inspire you makes them feel good inside and doesn’t make you a photo stealing copycat! It’s a more positive collaborative approach rather than a negative one.