Why diversity in the blogging community is so important

#ILiveItIBlogIt

I like to think I am a person who advocates for diversity in society and is passionate about achieving equality for every person on the planet. So when I saw the campaign my friend John Sennett was running to promote divesity within the blogging community I was proud and excited  ( I may have even done a fist pump In the air) 

During my time being in the blogging community ive spoken to some amazing relatable people who understand the sometimes troubling times and experiences I have as a women  who is a wheelchair user, has epilepsy and a mental illness, reading there ecxpirence’s and how similar some are to mine has made me feel more “normal” and like I wasent alone in what I was going trough.

I hate using that word normal is this context but the truth is minorities arn’t the normal within society. The media has a big part to play in that . I see adverts promoting  diversity and they are really not! The most recent example I can think of is Boohoo’s #allgirls campaign that was meant to be promoting all girls right to enjoy fashion and have their own sense of style, within the campaign a women who was plus size or disabled was no where to be seen. This is just the latest example I can think of where the media have ecxduded women who are disabled or have a different apperence to what society would consider normal. And I am sure there a many other instances of diversity exclusion that I haven’t regonized because I am not in that minority group. 

We have a chance to change this us bloggers are part of a new wave of media, we can share our stories and support each other in our real lives warts and all without the glossyness that even many bloggers feel the need to present. Im in my 20s now and confident enough to most of the time being comfortable  with my disablities and mental health problems but at school I was not, but if I was to go into my school times it would be a whole different post. However can say that I would have loved to have someone older than me showing how life really is for them as a disabled person.

Let’s change this for the next generation let’s use the power we have as influences to share the life’s we live our real lives and support and love each other for who we are not the normal were told to be! Let’s all take part in the #ILiveItIblog it campaign and let that just be the start of embracing our diversity.

Do not define yourself by your mental health

time-to-change

Hi again after over a month of not blogging as I’ve said before I love this and if I ever don’t blog for a long period of time its because of my social anxiety, which is slowly getting better after a bad month or two I might explain that in more in another post if you want me to but I’m fed up of being negative at the moment so instead I thought id share why I have decided to pluck up the courage to write this post and whats changed for me.

 

 

While I haven’t been blogging I’ve still been reading blogs from amazing people who struggle with mental health conditions but still continually post amazing and insightful post. I was always in awe of them everytime I read a post this at times made me feel guilty that I couldn’t be as strong as them to do this and then led to my anxiety getting worse and letting negative thoughts creep in such as ” yer it doesn’t matter that your not blogging cause no one likes you anyway so they won’t care or miss you” ( sharing that bit of negativity is for the purpose of positivity I promise)

This constant getting inspired by people and then comparing myself to people I couldn’t match up to or didn’t think I did was a rut I was getting myself into I wanted to be like these people but I just couldn’t.

But then I had a lady who was a representative of the #timetochange campaign come into my lecture in the mental health module of my course, she was introduced as a professional and not someone with a mental health condition who had used services herself. I heard all these amazing things she had done in her career, to be honest, its a career I could only dream of and then we were told details of her mental health conditions and the depth of how serious they were.

I was shocked, but i wasn’t shocked she was able to do this amazing job with a mental health condition I was shocked she chose to due to the nature of the parallels her mental health had with her job I can’t go into detail about what her job was but all I will say is that her colleagues also ended up being here care providers while during the times she was servilely unwell and then she would go back to work with them when she was better. I just sat there in shock that she was one brave enough to do that and not scared of stigma and two had the self-confidence that she was able to do the job with the confidence that she was still an equal to her colleagues. Questions about stigma and confidence in her abilities as a practitioner were brought up by my peers in the lecture and her replies just gave me a new outlook on my abilities both professionally and personally such as hobbies like blogging. She said:

” my mental health is part of me but its not all of me it also gives me a different outlook on the way I look at things which are a strength, it also helps me relate to people with mental health issues but I know that I can still treat them because everyone condition is different and I’m here today telling you all this to break the stigma so you can see that everyone with mental health is an individual and shouldn’t just be seen as their mental health”

This amazing lady made me realise that my blogs won’t be like the other amazing peoples in this community if I do blog and if I can’t blog when I’m ill that doesn’t mean I’m less brave them then cause I might have things in life that they can’t do while they are struggling with their mental health due to our individuality as people.

So lastly before I end this ramble I realise this post has been a bit jumpy that’s because I’ve had to miss out details and not to say how it affected my personal feeling for my fears of my abilities in my career and instead stick to how it helped with blogging because of privacy issues. but i hope i got the point across that if you have mental health issues or no someone who does don’t compare yourself to others don’t put yourself down don’t stigmatise yourself by seeing yourself as your mental health condition instead see yourself as an individual with a mental health condition who still has personality and invalid strengths and weaknesses and have confidence in yourself.

Thank you so much for reading I hope to post again soon!

Courtney