Instagram challenge encourages self-love among teenage girls

Anushka Mukherjee | Staff Writer

In the face of the confused state of the world, many girls of the Mason community have taken to social media to spread positive messages of self-love and gratitude. 

For 24 hours, many girls’ Instagram stories were filled with posts about spreading positivity during times of gravity. Each girl posted a picture of herself with a positive message about self-love, acceptance, and appreciation and tagged 10 more girls to do the same. Senior Anwesa Basa joined the trend because she said that this was a great way to ignite hope and unite everyone. 

“I felt that in this unprecedented break people were feeling low and that this pick me up would unite everyone,” Basa said. “Honestly I was one of the first people to post and I could feel a positive energy radiating from my Instagram (for the first time) when all the girls were posting and loving themselves.”

As the quarantine has forced people to take on a new daily routine, many are feeling an absence of love and appreciation. The isolation is leading to a greater appreciation of friends and family. According to Basa, this trend serves two purposes. 

“One was to appreciate one another more,” Basa said. “Being away from all our friends and being confined in our houses kind of leads to a reminiscence in my opinion. I think that this trend allowed us to (on a large scale) connect with our friends. The second purpose was to just remind everyone that they are beautiful, and they need to love themselves first.”

Senior Shweta Swain joined the trend when she was tagged by her friends. She said she believes that this simple trend was needed to unite everyone and remind them of the positivity that still exists. 

“It’s simple,” Swain said. “I think it’s the little things that really make the difference and that is the purpose of this trend. Posting a picture and tagging some people is not that hard but it can make a huge difference in someone’s day. Those little bits can lead to widespread positivity and that is a really powerful thing. It reminds you of all the strong and awesome women and people in general, that are in your life.” 

And it’s not just Mason, people all over the country are adding to this chain of positivity. 

“I saw stories and was tagged by people that lived in different states,” Swain said. “I mean it’s not just in Mason or even Ohio, it’s all around the country. Also, when I posted my story, the people I tagged immediately reached out to me and said thank you and just sent out very positive vibes. I did the same thing, and it was a huge positive atmosphere for all of us.”

It’s not just about spreading positivity to others but also raising awareness about accepting each other and celebrating their strengths and flaws. Senior Tani Madichetti said she always tries to advocate for women’s appreciation in one way or another, and was happy to see this trend come about. She said that this was a great way to hype each other without judgement. 

“It was just nice to see us collectively building each other up for once, and honestly it felt good to unashamedly accept my worthiness,” Madichetti said. “I think the purpose was to spread positivity and I think it has done so much of that! I’ve gotten so many compliments or had so many girls tell me they cared about me and that I was worthy and it feels so good!”

Whether it’s about spreading positivity or recognizing each other’s worth, this trend allowed people to appreciate the good in their lives despite the crisis that’s looming over. Basa said that it’s a great distraction from the negativity of the crisis as it allows people to focus on something good. 

“Not everything is going as planned right now, and I think this push is letting people see and spread positivity,” Basa said. “It’s not just a girl thing, but it’s important to have this push to stay sane in away. Yes, it may not be huge, but this trend had a positive impact of reminding people that this crisis is not the end of the world. That despite being away from each other we can support each other, in a nonsuperficial way.”

Graphic by Riley Johansen.